Best of Napa Valley with Pam Starr

Experience Napa Valley Like a Local

 

Pam Starr - Winemaker, Crocker & Starr

Winemaker Pam Starr puts in long hours overseeing the production of Cabernet Franc and other varieties at Crocker & Starr. But she also makes time to soak up her surroundings. "Napa Valley is more diverse than eating and drinking your way through 31 miles of happiness," she says. Sure, Pam enjoys visiting wineries, but she also likes to go hiking and mountain biking and seeing artists at work. "Napa's unique, we just have a really creative, wonderful lifestyle." Read on to see how to follow her lead.

5 Recommendations from Pam Starr

 

Oxbow Public Market

"If you go to our own local market in Napa called the Oxbow, there's a spice company there, and you get to open up all the lids and smell the spices," says Pam Starr. "I like to go and be inspired by different smells. They invite everybody to come in, and they have these huge wonderful jars in multiple colors, and you can just crank off the lid and hold the lid up and smell it. I have to say I really love doing that."

Oxbow Public Market in Napa Valley

Nature Walks with the Land Trust of Napa County

"You can go on a nature walk with the Land Trust, and a guide will tell you about all the plants that we have here – they're all really important to the Napa Valley life," says Pam Starr. "It's worth the membership, and you should sign up in advance. Offerings have included a full moon hike at Tuteur Ranch, Hoffnagle Loop at Wildlake Ranch, and Linda Falls."

Land Trust of Napa County Hiking

Di Rosa

"There are a lot of artists here in the Napa Valley, and you can go into their shops and watch them weld or paint; they're really interesting people," says Pam Starr. "We also have one of the best preserves ever – di Rosa, with art inside and out. We hired one of the docents for a Crocker & Starr company team building activity where we toured the art and were challenged to describe our thoughts. It was super fun."

Di Rosa in Napa Valley

Hiking at Table Rock and Beyond

"There's a really great trail that lets you hike the ridgeline of the eastern hills," says Pam Starr. It begins with the Table Rock Trail, which meanders for about three miles through forests to a lookout point with rewarding views. Along the way, you'll pass open chaparral, volcanic cliffs, and seasonal wildflowers like poppies and lupine. Table Rock connects to Palisades Trail (about four miles), which in turn connects to Oat Hill Mine Road.

Hiking at Table Rock

Skyline Wilderness Park

"Skyline Wilderness Park is known for its mountain-bike racing, which can be very challenging; I don't do all of the challenging trails, I just do the ones where I won't fall off my bike and skid my knee anymore," says Pam Starr. "It's a great place to go and ride your mountain bike. You can do archery, spot wildlife, and there's major hiking there as well."

Skyline Wilderness Park in Napa Valley