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Nice views, fun to explore and wasnt too hard of a hike.

Awesome trail. Great scenery. Dogs allowed. So many little streams and great waterfalls. Looking forward to doing it again.

Parked at Rock Springs. Hiked counterclockwise - down Simmons-Bernstein-Kent to Alpine Lake then back up on Helen Market-Cataract Falls. Good water flow after the recent rains. Hiked: 8.4 miles, 4 hours.

Yep we did it in the pouring rain & it was still spectacular! The falls were fanastic & all the trails were streams. Its going to be amazing for the next few days while all the water rushes down. Beautiful scenery & habitats & plenty of newts hiking with us.

hiking
14 days ago

Loved the hike. It is strenuous because of the distance and the constant uphills/downhill. Take water and pack snacks. I packed about 5L and was just about enough. The view from the top is beautiful. Definitely go with a partner.

Sunol Regional Wilderness is my favorite area to hike in the Bay. It's just so pleasant! Almost immediately upon stepping onto this trail, we saw a bobcat! I couldn't believe it! He ran off the trail and went to rest in the shade. He didn't want to bother anyone. We also saw two vultures, a raffle of turkeys, a lizard, rodents galore, and of course, COWS! The first part of the trail is somewhat shaded and there are plenty of trees, but also plenty of sun. Once you pass the threshold of the Ohlone Wilderness Gate, you don't get anymore shade. As you near the peak, you start to see a lot of hikers from the Fremont side. My friend and I were glad we took the longer, more scenic route. The views from our side of the mountain were sensational. The other side had views of the suburbs and absolutely no shade. When we neared the peak, we confronted a bunch of craggy rocks. Climbing up them was a lot of fun. In fact, on the parts that offered trail vs. rocks, i opted to climb up the rocks because the trail was a little slippery with bits of tiny pebbles that were easy to slide on. It felt good to reach the peak, but I must say, we didn't even stay up there long enough to take a picture. There were flies everywhere! I didn't even want to get close to the pole because it was like Lord of the Flies. It also didn't smell great. But we went just 20-30 feet down and sat in a bed of grass to overlook the nearby cities. We could even see Sutro Tower.

If you want a trail permit, you'll have to buy it at the park during the weekend for $2 or purchase it on the internet and have it mailed to you for $4. We went on a Friday, and even though we asked a park ranger to buy some, she told us they weren't selling any on a Friday morning, and besides, no one was checking for permits along the trail (wink wink). The permit is apparently nice to have, though, because it's a map of the entire Sunol area, and it's good for the whole year.

In terms of wild flowers, I was expecting to see hillsides full of them, but they were here and there. We saw some purples and some golden poppies. The park rangers and docents were planning for the annual wildflower festival next weekend, so maybe we were too early to see them in all their glory.

All in all, this was a great hike! We only passed 1 or 2 hikers on the way (until, or course, we got to the peak) and we constantly stopped to admire the beautiful hilly views. I wouldn't consider summitting Mission Peak any other way.

Awesome hike. Difficult in some areas but doable! Very crowded at top of the peak but trail there and back pretty empty which was great! Totally recommend

hiking
26 days ago

I did this hike in late March at the end of the rainy season. The hills were green and the Alameda Creek was flowing rapidly through Little Yosemite. The trail was a little muddy, but it was manageable. I would not suggest doing this hike during the summer months as there is little shade and it gets hot. I was fortunate to have a cool, cloudy day, so I was able to move at a good pace without getting too tired. I tried to clock in under 5 hours, but the mud slowed me down a bit. I pack really light and can cover a lot of ground in a short time, so for most people I would plan for 6-8 hours at a normal pace with breaks.

There is a $5 parking fee and a $2 permit to hike on the Ohlone Wilderness Trail. The permit is good for a year. You'll also need the permit if you want to hike from Sunol to Mission Peak. It appears you can avoid the parking fee it you want to hike to Rose Peak from Welch Creek Road, but then you miss out on Little Yosemite. Also, you don't need a permit to hike to Little Yosemite if that's what you want to do (but you're probably not reading this if you just want to do that 2 mile walk).

My hike distance was exactly 18 miles. The track shows 18.8, but I think it was not a very clean path that added a few slight detours that added some artificial distance.

There are claims that dispute Rose Peak as being the tallest peak in Alameda County. Neighboring "Discovery Peak" on the Valpe Ridge to the east of Rose Flat is slightly higher at 3840 ft, but that one is on private property. Some people still hike there because it is so remote and the property lines are not very well marked.

The waypoint on the track mentioned a log canister at the peak, but I didn't see anything. There was a metal anchor in the ground where it appeared something used to be, so maybe that was it? Also, the views from the peak aren't as spectacular as Mt. Diablo or Mt. Tam as it doesn't have the prominence and there isn't a tower at the summit that provides nice views for the tourists. You're on your own out here and there are some trees at the top of Rose Peak that will obscure the view.

https://www.relive.cc/view/1472119126

One of the most gorgeous hikes in the Bay Area. The water is really flowing right now! Also, climb up the hill across from the parking lot for a truly epic view of the Bay Area.

Went here on Sunday 03/11 with my husband. Hike ended up being closer to 9 miles, but was very enjoyable! I could see it starting to get busier near the falls around 130-2pm but still a very nice hike. Trail is well maintained, and mostly shady.

So we started our hike going to Cataract Falls, on a weekday. We didn’t see too many people, and by the time we got there the hike wasn’t too difficult. Lots of going downstairs. We kept pushing to go to the lake, and made it. But that’s when the trail became difficult! And we had already hiked 5 miles at this point and it was close to 2:30. We had to summon all our strength to push up hill the last half of the hike, which beame the hard part! At the end, my fit bit said we did over 10 miles! It was worth it and a great accomplishment, but frustrating that the site said 7.5 miles.

This is a great hike. We went after the rainy season and the falls were fairly big. I will come back here again. We did it in February, it gets chilly. A softshell or a light jacket should be enough to keep you warm. Lots of people, you won't be alone on this trail.

hiking
1 month ago

Beautiful! It was a little confusing finding the start of the trail (we didn't know where to park), but it was a great 7 miles. Only one major uphill climb.

Absolutely gorgeous trail. Def go right at the start like other people say. However I got done at 8.5 miles not the 7 miles it says but also not the 12 plus miles other people are claiming. I also got 1900ft elevation climb whereas others seem to be different. Weird. If you go right you hit the meadow first then the alpine and then you hit a stunning stream and bridge before you hit the falls. Before the falls I only met one person along the trail. After the falls I met a lot of people. Highly recommended but get there early to avoid the crowds.

hiking
2 months ago

Amazing hike - especially in the morning before it gets busy. Can very different in the winter vs summer.
Lots of options on trails Trail in good condition and plenty of parking

Excellent hike for spring season. Perfect weather with breathtaking views. Hike is long but not super hard.
Loved it!!

One thing to note, the distance reported on Alltrails is off. Here's my GPS recording on Strava which comes to around 10miles ( I went off trail for about 0.5 miles ) https://www.strava.com/activities/1401541303

Lovely hike. Butt burner of a hike :-). Definitely good training if you'r planning for the likes of Half Dome. Shaded, so good for a hot sunny day, stays cool for most part of the hike. Medium to heavy traffic. Half way mark is at the Alpine Lake which is a super quiet area, great for a break/lunch spot. Although the Cataract Falls itself is even more beautiful and serene so you might want to have your snack/lunch there instead.

I ended up only doing Cataract Trail because I got a late start. I made a huge mistake parking at the Rock Spring parking lot instead of the Watershed parking lot. The majority of this trail is on a steep incline, so I ended up starting downhill and ending uphill. It was strenuous but beautiful. I had the trail to myself most of the way out which was really nice. I loved this trail!

Decided to do this as a dayhike to train for Whitney later this year. Definitely found myself wishing I was overnighting it. Beautiful hike with plenty of solitude. Lots of up and down on the way up, which means there's still plenty of climbing to be done on the way back. Rose peak is not a high prominence peak, so the views at the top are less rewarding than the breeze at the top, but it's still a nice perspective. Last few miles were particularly tough just because of distance (closer to 20 miles). Took a short detour up to the water spigot at sunol backpack camp to refill on the way back (boiled my water as it is untreated), before cutting down the backpack road towards little yosemite to go around the last bit of uphill on the mcorkle trail. Exhausted and sore, but happy i made the hike.

Hiked 13.1 mi. Gained 2480ft in elevation.

BEAUTIFUL trails! We went in thinking it was a 7.5 mi 1745ft gain hike but really it's 13 miles with 2480 gain in elevation... I wish this could be edited because we were in for quite a long hike.

Pack lunch and plenty of water! We took this trail in reverse, counter-clockwise. We had lunch at Alpine Lake which took us 1.5 to 2 hours to reach at a steady pace. Most of the way there was downhill so be sure to side-step to save your toes! After the lake we headed to the waterfalls which was all on an uphill incline, and then the trail back to our car was on a heavy incline as well (lots of stairs) with the last leg (about 0.9mi) being a flat meadow. Be prepared to work!

Even though we hiked 5 miles more and gained 700ft more than this says in elevation it was well worth the work! Our feet and legs were doggone dead LOL but it was so freakin gorgeous out! We saw lots of butterflies, different birds, and salamanders on a warm Feb day!

Hiked 13.2 miles
Gained 2142 ft elevation

Featured: Waterfall(s), meadow(s), vista(s)

Trail: Well maintained in most areas, legible trail markers (albeit confusing at times) most areas have no signal (pay attention to alltrails map) free parking (ticketed after sunset and locked in), the actual trail is 7.3 miles (begin on the right trail because you will head down hill and end your hike on even ground rather than reverse) relatively isolated in back areas. A beautiful place to star gaze and climb trees. Moderate/hard. (we took every wrong way possible. lol)

Lovely place after a rainy day!

Really enjoyed this hike. Lots of wildlife, and the only other people I saw on the trail were at the peak coming from the other side. Entry gate was free today (weekdays?) so no attendant, but I lucked out and caught a ranger as he was leaving who was happy to help me out with the wilderness permit. The trail is pretty well maintained and despite the recent rains, I had minimal issues with mud. The fog was still lifting when i reached the top, so the view was a nice hybrid of landscape and mist.

Great lil hike, brought my 8 year old son on his first two nighter backpacking trip and granted some of the uphill realllyy wore on him, I prepared ahead and planned to carry his tiny lil backpack for him for parts of the way. Dogs allowed, but definitely no fires allowed. Was out there for a meteor shower and while I didn’t see anything, it was beautiful at night

This is my first longest trail route. It has lot of trails inside you may end up going into some other route ensure you can carry gps trackers. In this trail route you will see golden gate and Pacific Ocean. Good for moderate level hikers to start with hard levels

backpacking
3 months ago

For ‘city folk’, you’ll not find more bang for your buck. Great views, decent distance, pristine lake and views. I’ve not been back in a few years, but hope to get back again someday.

Good moderate uphill or downhill the whole
time.

It was beautiful! I went in the morning and loved it. The trail is really muddy, so make sure to bring extra shoes for when you finish.

note the directions that are given, the road was closed to where the trail head started so you ha e to park across from that road and walk about 1.5 uphill or so up the road. then you hit the trail. which is great if you make sure you have plenty of time. we started around 1:30, thinking 3.5 hours as the other hikers said would be fine. well we had to turn around at 5.1 miles in (that includes the road hike to the trail head)so that we would make it out of there by dark . we busted ass back up the stairs we thought we would never have to walk up after walking down them. just make sure to give yourself plenty of time!!

NOT HARD. Moderate at best. We were expecting a challenging workout, but were disappointed. Never even broke a sweat.

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