Naked fun in the sun!

Our 36th annual guide to Bay Area nude beaches


Entertainer Wavy Gravy and Pentagon Papers leaker Daniel Ellsberg like Red Rock Beach; Marin Superior Court Commissioner Roy Chernus favors Bass Lake, and Marin County Sup. Steve Kinsey says he's been naked at Red Rock, Bolinas, Hagmier Pond, and Mount Vision Pond.

"I've probably hit every nude beach in Marin," says Kinsey, who has described his visits as "exhilarating and normal." "My last dip was at Bass Lake last fall. It has beautiful, fresh water, and the swimming environment is wonderful. I look forward to the next opportunity."

But on their next trips to the nude section of beautiful Muir Beach, visitors may notice something new: a warning sign is being erected by the county this summer to urge users to be "respectful" of each other and to notify authorities if there's trouble.

The sign is the result of a compromise worked out by nudists, law enforcers, county officials, and local homeowners, some of whom wanted nudity stopped. Under the agreement, cops are making a few more visits than before. But through July 1, 2010, only four complaints about nudity and one citation for improper sexual conduct have occurred since January 1, 2009, and none since August 13, 2009, according to marin county sheriff's office crime analyst Susan Medina. "We keep responding to complaints, but I can't recall any recent citations," says Lt. Cheryl Fisher, commander of the Marin County Sheriff's Office's West Marin Station. Fisher says the subjects are usually suited up by the time deputies arrive. "A deputy showed up on a very hot Sunday," says regular visitor Michael Velkoff of Scotts Valley. "As soon as he left, everybody was naked again."

"Of course, guys in spiked penis rings not parading themselves around also have helped," says Sup. Kinsey, who, for now, has spiked his previous threat to fight back by starting an effort to make Muir and other beaches clothing-optional under a 1975 law giving Marin County the power to exempt areas from its anti-nudity provisions. "Sometimes the best thing we can do in government is to stay out of the way."

Homeowners remain wary. One, who wants to remain anonymous, tells the Guardian: "We are optimistic" about being able to "coexist" with the naturists, "but we also remain very clear about what is legal and what will and won't be tolerated." And a former advocate of the ban told me that instead of not going to Muir Beach "a person wanting to use the beach nude might do it in a manner that doesn't draw a lot of attention."

As if the Marin mashup wasn't enough, nervous naturists also got ready to do battle with state authorities, who they feared would eventually ban nudity at Devil's Slide in San Mateo County and at Bonny Doon Beach near Santa Cruz, both of which are state beaches.

The jitters came in the wake of an October 2009 California high court ruling allowing a crackdown on nude sunbathing on state beaches, even in areas traditionally used for such activity. "All it takes now is an individual ranger with the desire to issue a citation," warns R. Allen Baylis, a Huntington Beach attorney representing the Naturist Action Committee, the country's biggest nudist lobbying group. "It could have a chilling effect [on nudity] on any state beach."

"Our thin line of security has been overturned," says Rich Pasco, head of the Bay Area Naturists, based in San Jose. "So let's hope that in today's economy, the thin level of state park staff has better things to do with their time than dealing with naturists."


As a long time resident of Muir Beach I am in no way opposed to having nude sunbathers on the beach. As an adult, I am also not opposed to men walking around with hardware dangling from their units. What I am opposed to is lewd conduct on the beach that may offend any of my neighbors and their children.

I have seen just about everything you could imagine, including men jerking off and walking around the beach with hard-ons. This to me is not what I would call sunbathing.

The only thing a sunbather has to remember when coming to Muir Beach, is that, if they are cited for indecent behavior, its very likely that they could be tagged as a sex offender. This is a label that will be difficult to remove. So, you corporate types, yes the Google, Sun Microsystem and BofA worker this won't in anyway enhance your career. Try getting a job at the NSA when you have to explain that you were cited 8 years ago for walking around a beach with a set of rubber bands around your nuts.

Bathers beware!

Posted by Muir Beach Resident on Jul. 09, 2010 @ 2:11 pm

you are right

Posted by sterling belefant on Jul. 27, 2010 @ 11:48 pm

The other day I saw two men nude on Market and 4th. They are often seen walking around the Castro. They were holding some sign to elect someone for something.

I honestly don't know what they are thinking. If it was really just about being nude they wouldn't have been wearing cock rings with their penises semi-erect. Also, if a person is going to be naked.... go to the gym!!!

The bad news is what ever statement they are trying to make is not the one that is coming through.

Posted by Guest Greg on Aug. 11, 2010 @ 10:11 am

It's perfectly natural for people to walk around in the nude all over the world.But westerner's are so blasted uptight and twisted about it. All the gawking by the men on women and men on men.I thought the purpose was to enjoy the water and sun.If you want to have a contest of who has wins whatever award for this category go have a contest on the internet/cable for that.
Stop trying to make these beaches all about your selfish ego driven pleasure center's.
You want all this freedom but will not take any responsibility. The way we treat ourselves,each other and the Planet. It's really time to get real people. sorry. Just telling you how it looks from angle.
I am all for fun. someone has to clean up the house after the party.

peace to all-

harold Z

Posted by Harold z on Aug. 23, 2010 @ 9:09 am

Harold, what are you saying? Nudity is ok with you, but not lewdity?

Posted by johny why on Sep. 18, 2010 @ 7:28 pm

That is not right at all.. Walking naked on Market St? Have a little respect to your self - naked person!!

Posted by Guest on Aug. 23, 2010 @ 9:56 pm

the naked body is the most natural and beautiful thing in the world (ok, maybe not all bodies). be proud, naturists, be proud! share your bare with the malls of humanity and the halls of justice!

don't let Christian shame besmirch your good name.

but i agree that lewdity should be discreet. i don't want to see other people's sexual activities in public. that is disrespectful.

Posted by johny why on Sep. 18, 2010 @ 7:34 pm

Why be opposed of a man's hard on. Some men like myself have a big dick. My dick looks like I am hard and sometimes I am.That may be lewd to some but impressive to others. If a hard on is caught by someone being stroked then that is one thing but if my dick is just hard and I am mining my business then that is another. That is no difference than some women with big butts and some with their butt hole exposed because their tiny butts. who can judge why some people body is different.

Posted by Guest Farris on Mar. 04, 2011 @ 10:44 am

very naked issues.. !!!!

Posted by jigar on Apr. 25, 2011 @ 1:55 am

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