I suppose that I've never seen signs to the Giacomini Wetlands because land access is fairly limited. They are muddy marshes subject to periodic flooding, after all. But as I discovered on my most recent visit to Point Reyes Station, an easy trail from town leads onto Dairy Mesa, a dry, elevated portion of the Giacomini parcel with sweeping views over the wetlands themselves.
At the intersection of 3rd and C streets, I found the trail, passed through a wooden fence and began to walk toward a historic, whitewashed barn about a quarter mile away. The path of crushed granite loops around the mesa, passing a few informational panels and benches with prime views of the bay, marshes, and surrounding hills. I sat on one bench, taking in the green, spring landscape, watching cotton ball clouds drift by and enjoying a mini-concerto of meadow-bird tweets and duck quacks.
The barn proved an unexpected attraction. Although the structure is officially closed to the public, its doors and windows were nonetheless wide open. Peeking inside, I saw evocative reminders of its former function: empty feed buckets in stalls; wood worn smooth from contact with countless cows; shadowy corners where a trace of barnyard scent surely lingered.
From outside the barn, I looked out over the wetlands and the bay in the distance. Standing there, I felt happy that this whitewashed old-timer—a beloved relic, really, of a business that remains important in West Marin—has survived to witness Mother Nature's return.