Explore Trails to try - 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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Love this trail especially the Steep Ravine portion. Beautiful ravine with the added shade of our coastal Redwoods! Park free at Stinson and end your hike relaxing at the beach. Complete day!

hiking
1 day ago

Took the water taxi, so 12 km of hiking on rocky paths from the Upper Echo Lake to the Lake Aloha.
Beautiful Lake Aloha but water level very slow, so didn’t get into the water.
Lake the Woods is awesome and better for swimming for today.

Difficult when hiking up from Lake the Woods back to the Pacific Crest Trail towards Echo Lake, high altitude causing low oxygen, this part will take a longer and certain persons may feel bad (as I did).

Be aware: 50 cents for the public phone for the return boat call.

From the Matt Davis which quickly opens up to beautiful, rolling hills overlooking the Pacific into switchbacking down through evergreen forests to the open coastal trail of the Dipsea to a gorgeous, shaded Redwood forest along Webb Creek on the Steep Ravine, this hike has it all.

A couple short-but-tight street walks/crossings (from Pantoll across to Matt Davis and in town to Dipsea trailhead) so beware of traffic.

We parked at the Pantoll station and hiked Steep Ravine to Dipsea. Lunch at Stinson. Back up Matt Davis. Did not care for Matt Davis. A lot of poison oak and not nearly as pretty as Steep Ravine/Dipsea. Quite the climb on a warm late afternoon as well. Good workout dripping sweat the first couple miles on Matt Davis though so...there's that. We hiked Friday, July 20th. Trails weren't terribly crowded. We passed about five or six groups and a couple of solo hikers on the way down. One runner. A few solo hikers coming down Matt Davis while we climbed up.

Started at 9am & finished a little passed noon, totaling 7.5 miles. Started at Dipsea & veered further by hiking the borders of the ocean coast, then crossed over to the Matt Trail. The incline at the beginning was definitely a burn, but a great workout. It was hot, but cooled down in the shaded areas on Matt Trail. Very little water in the creeks. No waterfall. There is a restroom at the parking lot between the 2 trails. Trails were very clean. Views were beautiful. Saw lots of blue dragonflies on the Matt Trail. Would love to do this hike again in the spring or after a good rain.

Truly gorgeous with lots of people but enough cool spots to get some alone time if like me you were looking for that. I spent a night at Tamarack Lake midway between the trailhead at Echo Lake and Aloha because I couldn’t get a permit to camp at Aloha on my first night. It was kind of nice that it forced me to go slower and appreciate another lake in the area. But you could easily spend a few days near Aloha. Next time I’ll do Aloha on night 1 and go on to one of the other lakes further up the PCT from there for night 2. I’m no thru hiker and that’s good because I don’t feel compelled to blow through 30 miles of beauty in one day.

Amazing views! It took us 4 hours with 4 kids (5 years old - 10). Little dusty during August. Recommend to start with with the harder trail, the Dipsea Trail.

Great hike! Did it clockwise, and It was nice walking down with the view in the end. However I think I would have preferred the other direction. On the top of the open grassland take some of the smaller trails to get further up on the boulders visible from the trail. Amazing view over the beach, SF skyline and on clear days you can see the entire Bay Area!

One of the great California hikes. Mostly shady. Wide variety of bio communities.

hiking
5 days ago

This trail is beautiful and thankfully, outside of being hazy for photos, the smoke was barely noticeable. Definitely plan for a long day hike... what slows you down is the constant rocky terrain. Most of the trail consists of walking on rocks. Bring proper shoes. A lot of exposed area so bring the sunblock. The wildflowers are everywhere and the lakes are stunning! Lake Aloha was a great lunch spot, but pretty windy and made it too chilly for a swim. Got in at Lake of the Woods it was perfect!

Great trail with beautiful lake at the end. Due to time constraints we had to take water taxi both ways. The “drop phone” was not operational and we didn’t have the coins to call the taxi back after arriving back at the dock. Luckily we had one phone with enough bars to call from end of dock. Take 50cents if u want the ride back. Gets hot in exposed parts; bring plenty sunscreen! Great views of Sierra crest at lake aloha.

backpacking
9 days ago

gorgeous hike with wildflowers and a big green lake. the stream crossings are super manageable this time of year but be aware of high risk for forest fires. we backpacked in and had the whole lake to ourselves. dog friendly!

Just as all the other reviews have said, this is a beautiful hike with a lot of diverse scenery! Whether you start with Dipsea (as we did) or with Matt Davis, the ascent is mostly in the shade, which is nice. The trailhead on the map looks like it's on the same side of Shoreline Highway as Stinson Beach, but it is actually across the street and you will see where the steps immediately start ascending (if you're starting with Dipsea Trail, that is).

backpacking
11 days ago

Great trail not too difficult. Awesome place for a chill backpacking weekend

15 days ago

The path is wide and well signed. It starts with a gentle incline through mostly exposed ravine. This takes you over the hill and back towards the road. From the new trail head, you walk steadily uphill through partially shaded trees to the ridge line. Once at the top you are rewarded with views of East Bay hills and reservoirs on one side and Bridges and bayviews to the other side. There are some nice benches to sit and enjoy the vistas. Then, it is a shady decline through bay and eucalyptus trees. Some parts are a bit rocky and steep, but doable.

Gorgeous hike. Took the Dipsea Trail and the Matt Davis back to be awarded with beautiful scenic views of the fog cover and ocean...

Such a wonderful hike;) I did this hike middle part of the day so I recommend wearing sunscreen since most part of the hike has no shade and wear a good hiking shoes for the rocky terrain:) I will definitely recommend this hike! Enjoy the scenery!

hiking
17 days ago

Awesome hike but if a novice hiker or out of shape and also plan on doing it as a day hike, plan a very long day.

It is such a beautiful hike, and the meadows were filled with an array of flowers. The lake is just gorgeous and very welcoming for a swim. While heading over to the dam was blessed to see a beaver on the trail too. The trail had a variety of terrain from sandy, rocky, and granite.

trail running
18 days ago

It is for the paved road running, not trail running. The loop is a perfect distance to train for a half Marathon. It is relatively flat, so I can maintain a very steady pace. The trail has enough barrier/room from the roads next to it, so the passing traffic doesn’t bother me, and there isn’t much car exhaust smell at all. I love it for a running trail (I probably wouldn’t enjoy it as much as a walking trail).

Great trail so beautiful the view up there .. so worth it!!!

First time hiker.. this was very challenging but we made it all the way to lake aloha for lunch.. best environment for lunch anywhere... My PB&J was delish... Anyway this was very exhausting and well worth it.. the scenery is breath taking, truly God's country or whatever u believe in.... We started out real early and ran into traffic late in the day.. no places for water along the way.. we actually took 10 bottles f9r the 2 of us and ran out just shy of the finish line.. I would also mention if u take a dog with u, get them boots and be considerate, I saw a lot of dogs just exhausted..2 owner's had to carry them back. They were labs, shocking.. anyway if you want a decent challenge for a rookie then this trail is a must try..

Beautiful. Steep unfinished steps.

Great views of the city and plenty of elevation change to raise the bpm.

19MAY2018 - Awesome day hike. Moderately challenging as advertised. We brought our dog and carried our 1 yo daughter along with us. not too crowded. Great views along the way and a beautiful snow-capped backdrop of the reservoir at the top. Perfect spot for lunch before heading back. It was also cool to see the old abandonded equipment along the way, from when the dam was constructed.

hiking
22 days ago

Trail was absolutely breathtaking. So many beautiful wild flowers. A few very challenging areas where climbing or crossing creeks required the help of friends. Definitely worth the challenge!

LOVE this trail! SO beautiful, a lot of different types of scenery. Highly recommend!

on Lake Aloha Trail

22 days ago

, v. .

What a great hike. Incredibly beautiful!

I will rated as easy with excellent views!

Easy parking at Inspiration Point, then can reach the trail from there. Wonderful views and breeze. Partially shaded, but had and sunscreen a good idea. Budget 2 hours to make the full loop. Semi rocky in parts, so close-toed shoes recommended. Great moderate hike!

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