Cataract Falls from Rock Spring Trail is a 8.5 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Stinson Beach, California that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.
dogs on leash
Enjoy the beautiful Catact Falls as it drains into the Alpine Lake, Manzinta groves, redwoods, and chaparral biomes offer a plethora of natural habits to relax and enjoy the soothing sighgts and sounds of nauture.
Beautiful trail. We did the loop of Cataract Falls, Helen Market Trail, Kent Trail, High Marsh Trail, 75 Yard Trail, Laurel Dell Fire Road, and back to Cataract Falls. Definitely start at the dam and then take the Helen Market Trail. It's much easier to do the stairs of cataract falls at the beginning of the hike compared to trying at the end.
It had rained for quite a few days before our hike and it rained most of our hike. The falls were so fast and loud, it was amazing. The manzanitas on the High Marsh Trail were beautiful. It was such an amazing hike.
Print a map and take it with you if your not familiar with all the trail names. This saved us from taking the wrong path a few time. It also let us change our original plan since we were running out of daylight.
Also give yourself plenty of time. We ended up hiking 45min past sunset and it was difficult to traverse. The gate locks at sunset(we got locked in), luckily we took the road the other way and went around Alpine and Bon Tempe, otherwise we were locked in for the night.
The incline and stairs can be tiring, but doable. This hike took us about 5 hours with a very short lunch break and multiple quick stops to catch our breath on the stairs. My phone gps said it was 12.5 miles and 165 flights of stairs.
Great hike but we were nearly run over by some mountain bikers who were recklessly speeding down a single track trail. Please note that bikes are NOT allowed on single track hiking and equestrian trails per the MMWD policy. Bikes are only allowed on paved and unpaved roads.
3 days of rain gives you amazing waterfalls! Great family hike. Parked in Rock Spring.
We hiked the full loop clockwise, AllTrails says 7.5 miles / 1811ft elevation gain / 4hr 42min. The time includes a brief water snack break at the lake, and a few stops along the way. This route is a more gradual hike down to the lake, and a slightly steeper, tougher hike in the second half. Which was is easier? Hard to say. I kept wondering how the heck we are STILL going downward?! And how the climb back up/out was going to be brutal! I was stunned by how much water was flowing! Even compared to Hawaii's waterfalls, it was really going. And beautiful! It had rained the night before, but still, amazing. In spite of that, the trail was not too wet or muddy. So many cool little bridges, and cascades. Hope I can hike it again before I leave the Bay.
Such a beautifull place but it's kinda of a hard trail bring lots of water too the last half of the trail is nothing but uphill so be ready for a strong finish
Great hike, definitely would recommend going clockwise so that you get the more gradual incline on the end of the hike. Lots of cute waterfalls and redwoods.
This trail is amazing!! So beautiful for the fall season.
There are a lot of waterfalls along the trail. A little low on water but it is still worth it,