Mighty Mountain

It’s a prominent feature that’s synonymous with Marin as well as a beacon that marks home. As with many monikers in the county, it is said that the name Mount Tamalpais comes from a Coast Miwok term, in this case for the landmass támal pájis, which translates to “west hill.” However, the mountain has been spawning legends and groups have been trying to lay claim to the name ever since the designation first appeared in 1845. One myth contends that Tamalpais is Coast Miwok for “sleeping maiden,” a native folktale of the same name. Another assertion has Asian and Siberian roots, and on top of all that, there’s folklore that points to the mountain being haunted. The Coast Miwok warned of a wicked witch who lived atop the mountain, though it’s believed they only said so to keep settlers away from the hallowed peak.