Coyote Creek Loop Trail is a 8.8 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Hollister, CA that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round.
See the Bay Area bloom in a hidden corner of Henry Coe State Park. Strenuous 9-mile hike. Henry Coe State Park south of San Jose is one of the best places see the Bay Area's spring wildflowers bloom. The park is all rugged countryside: hills, ridges, canyons -- genuine wilderness barely an hour's drive from a huge metropolitan area. The park's main entrance attracts throngs of flower gazers every spring, but few visit the remote Coyote Creek entrance. It's their loss, because this route is arguably the best place to see wildflowers at Henry Coe. My route is between 8.6 and 9 miles with about 2400 feet of elevation gain. Most of the hiking is on narrow single-track, unlike so many of Henry Coe's old ranch roads built for cars rather than hikers. Most of the trails are nicely graded and switchbacked, making this a pleasant route by Henry Coe standards. The Elderberry Spring Trail in the middle of this hike is one of my favorite Bay Area trails.
This was my first visit to Henry W. Coe State Park and I thoroughly enjoyed this Coyote Creek loop hike! Like the other reviewer, I too was glad I chose to do this hike in the clockwise direction. The steep descent down Grizzly Gulch would be exhausting as a climb going the other direction. With some very welcomed rain yesterday the wooded sections of the hike were damp and the scent was wonderful. Elderberry Spring Trail and the trail through Coyote Creek Canyon were my favorite parts. But the views from atop the ridge were also fantastic. Looking in various directions I could see Mt. Hamilton, Mt. Carmel, Gilroy and I could even make out the ridgeline of the Sierras way off in the distance. Coming across some foraging wild pigs was just below Jackson Road was fun!
What a great hike with fantastic and rewarding views! I was alone on the trail all the way up to Wasno Road but even after that, the company was thin on a beautiful sunny day. My kind of hike! Had lunch on a rock up at Jackson Rd. overlooking the marine layer in the valley and the mountain tops beyond. Fantastic! The hike up is gradual and scenic while the hike down the Dexter Trail and Grizzly Gulch was tough on the knees! So glad to not only have my poles, but to have gone the clockwise route rather than the other way around! Definitely knew I was going up, but never felt winded, the switch-backs are so gradual. It would be quite a work-out going counter-clockwise, if you're up for that! This time of year I may have skipped the Elderberry Spring Trail and continued on Jackson Road instead, I don't know that it was worth the detour, but maybe when the flowers are more in bloom. I was also a little unsure about the "old jeep road"- it didn't seem like a road to me, just an unmarked trail, but there weren't many other options, so I figured I was in the right place but wasn't 100% sure. I also missed the continuation of the Elderberry trail off of the Jeep road, I think, but ended up on Jackson Road anyway, so I'm not quite clear on those instructions. Outside of that, it's a great hike that I will definitely be doing again!