Summit 'n' Sip
May 15, 2008
Pair a hike to one of Sonoma's highest summits with an après tasting at its smallest winery, and you've got a vintage Wine Country day trip. At 2,729 feet, Bald Mountain's summit is a few hundred feet higher than Mount Tam's, offering views well worth the 7-mile (round-trip) hike. On clear days, the snow-capped peaks of the Sierra Nevada glint on the horizon and Mount Saint Helena looks close enough to touch; below, the lush green valleys and vineyard-latticed hills of Napa and Sonoma roll away. Descend via the same route, or make a partial loop by dropping down Gray Pine Trail to a mostly canopied section that crosses a creek, dips through forests, and pops out onto an open ridge with broad views. On the drive back, toast your successful ascent with a stop at Kaz, the smallest—and quite possibly the friendliest—winery in Sonoma. (The winery closes at 5:00 p.m., so be sure to time your hike accordingly.) Richard "Kaz" Kasmier is the big guy at this family-run winery, which makes only 60 barrels of delicious organic wine a year. Buy one of their uniquely labeled bottles and Kaz will happily sign it for you.
Kaz Vineyard & Winery, 233 Adobe Canyon Rd., Kenwood; 877-833-2536. Open Friday to Monday from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Tastings are $5.
For more spring activities in the Bay Area, check out Weekend Sherpa.
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