Explore Santa Cruz - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

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Reviews (900)
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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 7, 2021
Hiking

Beautiful trail! Last half mile to the waterfall was a little tricky, but worth it!

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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 6, 2021
Hiking

Such an amazing hike!!

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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 3, 2021
Hiking

Had a bit of a detour forgot to turn to go to maple falls. Had to go back then continue.

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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 28, 2021
HikingFeeGreat!

After payment entrance, go all the way to the end at the locked fire road gate located next to a parking lot and bathroom (a little over a mile). It will save you a couple of miles. We didn't know so we parked at the first bathroom as suggested by Alltrails. The Alltrails map was spot on regarding direction. The hike is relatively subtle with a steady incline towards Maple Falls. The hike starts on the main road and continues through the fire road gate. From the fire road gate, there is a fork. Alltrails app will direct you to take the Bridge Creek Trail to the left which is the most direct and scenic route. Most tend to take the wide relatively flatter fire road all the way to Porter House trail which will connect you back to the Bridge Creek Trail. The fire road seems easier but does have a lot of traffic from bicyclists and joggers. It is an ideal trail to train on for Marathons and Trail Races. The hike is moderate because of the length. Not so much the elevation gain. However, as noted by many, the last 1/2 mile is a bit complex. There are about three sections where you will literally have to use your hands to help you get through. Not as bad as some has made it sound. 90-95% of the trail is shaded. Even when hiking during high noon, not much sunlight bled through the canopy of the trees. The waterfall is not intensely big or towering but worthy of the hike. In my opinion, the trail is well kept and suitable for all. As someone had mentioned, I did see quite a few branches knocked down by the strong winds. However, the wind felt pretty calm hiking at the base of the trees.

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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarFebruary 28, 2021
HikingBlowdownFeeFloodedMuddy

Trail is not kid friendly- not towards the end. Some sections looks like high wind went through there. Requires creek crossing, climbing over trees & some rocks. I started .8 from the pay booth alltrails says 7.7 miles but I had over 10 miles. Hike is alright. Some areas do have high traffic but for the most part I did have the trail to myself

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Roger Gonzalez reviewed Bridge Creek Trail to Maple Falls
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarFebruary 27, 2021
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Hector Rodriguez reviewed Bridge Creek Trail to Maple Falls
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 27, 2021
Hiking

Awesome

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Michael Todaro reviewed Bridge Creek Trail to Maple Falls
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 27, 2021
Hiking
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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 27, 2021
Hiking

Amazing

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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 27, 2021
Hiking

This trail was beautiful, a shady forest the entire way. My husband referred to it as enchanted. At times, the choice of pathway was not clear and so I was glad I had downloaded the map. As most others have reported, long sections are very easy. However, the numerous slick creek crossings gave the last portion to the falls a very different feel.

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Rosario Alvarez reviewed Bridge Creek Trail to Maple Falls
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 24, 2021
Hiking

last .5 felt like an obstacle course, bring poles

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Allison . Hyman reviewed Bridge Creek Trail to Maple Falls
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarFebruary 21, 2021
HikingMuddyRockyScramble

Beautiful trail going through the forest and along the creek. i didnt make it to the falls because once you get past the sign that says maple falls 1mile, it gets really sketchy you have to cross streams, slippery steep rocks, mud and very unstable surfaces. I felt like I was gonna fall at one point so I turned around. I wish there was a rope or something more stable to hold on to, to get over safely. it is definitely more than 7.7, we did almost 9 and didn't make it all the way.

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Kristin Campbell reviewed Bridge Creek Trail to Maple Falls
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 20, 2021
Hiking

Tried to go to Maple Falls but too late for a 12 mi hike (upper gates closed to cars and would have had to walk an extra 4 mi). Ranger gave alternate trail that was beautiful. He also said try natural Bridges in Santa Cruz someday and camp at Manresa Upland state park. Easy rolling grade gorgeous redwoods and creek side hike

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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 20, 2021
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Bonnie Brannen reviewed Bridge Creek Trail to Maple Falls
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 17, 2021
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Natalia Marquez reviewed Bridge Creek Trail to Maple Falls
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 15, 2021
Great!Muddy

I love the forest scenic, so pretty. Great work out!

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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarFebruary 14, 2021
HikingFeeMuddyScramble

This is a lovely trail through the forest and along the creek to the falls. Would be great on a hot day, as it is almost entirely shaded. The last bit could be challenging for some; there are some very narrow passages with steep drops. However, the first half of the trail is fire road and relatively flat. The falls are small-if you're thinking on the scale of Yosemite you will be sorely disappointed. But it's a nice place to stop and sit for a while and just listen to the water. Bring a small tarp or something for that purpose. It gets very crowded here, especially on the fire road section, and there are a lot of bikes. Parking fills up early; we were there at 8 and it was fine, but I'd venture to say by 9 you'll be out of luck. Also--this is my second time hiking here, and both times the All Trails app has not worked as well as in other places. It often showed us slightly off the trail, even though we weren't. FYI.

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Dusty Ventura reviewed Bridge Creek Trail to Maple Falls
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarFebruary 14, 2021
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Chelsea Trumbull reviewed Bridge Creek Trail to Maple Falls
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 14, 2021
Hiking

Super fun and challenging yet closer to 12 miles!!

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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 14, 2021
HikingMuddy
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Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 13, 2021
HikingFeeGreat!MuddyScramble

We hiked in to Maple Falls and back out the Loma Prieta Grade Trail which made the total hike about 14 miles since we parked at the entrance. We got there just before 10 a.m. on a Sunday and got the last parking spot. As others have said, the trail does get a little confusing because there is a mini waterfall that’s not Maple Falls, and you have to keep walking down the stream bed to get to Maple Falls, which was really nice. The last part of the trail involves scrambling over rocks and logs and narrow, muddy trail but doable if you have hiking boots on. Would not recommend tennis shoes for this one. When you get to the Porter site you do need to bear left and then pick up the Bridge Trail again. If you pass the Porter House you’ve gone too far and will end up back on the fire road after crossing the stream. Several of us got lost in that area too.

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