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

winter Map
3 days ago

Amazingly magical place, especially on a nice day after a rainy season. It was just the perfect amount of challenging, and the scenery didn't let you get bored even for a minute. Go early in the morning if you prefer a more secluded hike; after 12pm this trail gets pretty busy (although, not overwhelmingly). Hubby and I actually decided to hike from the start of the Cataract Trail near the lake all the way to the beginning of Rock Springs Trailhead, and we found it to feel more complete. I'd suggest parking at the parking lot near the entrance to Rock Springs Trailhead and then walking all the way until the entrance to Cataract Trailhead. Have fun exploring!

Beautiful this time of year! Great hike and workout.

Love it!! Best to come after the rain !!

Nice view. Need lot of leg work and zeal to accomplish this trail.

Really cool hike Dec-March you can’t do the whole hike unless you do the tour as it’s National season and males are aggressive. There are limited spots. I almost didn’t go but it was awesome! $7 for the tour and $10 for parking

10 days ago

This was a beautiful get away but be prepared to work for it because there are a ton of stairs but mini waterfalls at every corner it was so peaceful me and my friends got there super early in fact first ones in the parking area by the time we left it was flooded with cars

I've walked this twice and both times felt it is over rated. The wide fire track is boring to walk on and the terrain stays the same (almost) the whole way up.

On a clear day the views are definitely worthwhile but again, these are not views unique to Mission Peak.

Definitely NOT moderate. It was a great hike but there was interesting spots and I questioned my ability to continue lol. Great views and lots of friendly people along the way. Part of the trail is being closed and there were no signs

this app and place is so fun and refreshing!!!!!!

NOT MODERATE. Not at all. Be sure to check the map often as it was easy to get off trail...at one point we were basically rock climbing on a section of trail one of the rangers said they were planning to close off soon.

Constant gradient and well paved trail. Good for training.

This is one of my favorite trails in the Bay Area. Starting just past the dam at alpine lake, the trail takes you along one of the streams that feed the lake. You gain 1000+ elevation, but the beauty of the cascading water next to you the whole way takes your mind off the work of climbing the stairs and inclines. The trail has many trees to provide shade, and the area has a lot of ferns, moss, and other vibrant foliage to please the eye. To extend the hike, I recommend heading west at laurel dell fire road, cross ridgecrest boulevard, take coastal trail to Matt Davis, then up to pantoll. Take old mine trail to rock spring and head back down cataract trail.

First time hiker! What an awesome trail. As mentioned, the path off to the waterfall can be easily missed. We missed it and ended up on ocean lake loop trail only to find a coyote that made us turn around. On the way back around we saw the arrow and went down the path. I REFUSE TO BELIEVE EVERYONE IS MAKING IT DOWN THESE ROCKS TO THE WATERFALL! We started our hike around 8am so we had the entire trail to ourself. The rocky cliff at the end is steep and can easily be your demise. The rope is very helpful, however as a 30 year old man in decent shape, I had a difficult time getting down to the beach and an even more difficult time climbing up. The rocks must have changed over the years because it is definitely not safe (unless I’m just that much of a beginner) either way I enjoyed myself! Not sure if I’ll try climbing down again. It has to be another way.

Beautiful trail! Definitely worth taking single track trails when you can, see below recommendation there. So clean and lots of water right now. Trekking poles highly recommended. Trail is not well marked back in the falls trail area so bring your phone/map and make sure you don’t get too side tracked on a deer trail?!

Fantastic trail! Gorgeous views of the coast and an incredible waterfall at the end for more nimble hikers who can make it down the bluff.

This trail is heavily travelled but very easy to miss. There is a small arrow like shape made of rocks on the left side of the trail about 4ish miles in. If you reach a bench at a lookout you’ve gone too far.

3/4/18 My first try was a few years ago. 20-30 lbs heavier and only made it 1/2 way up, stopping multiple times. This time made it up nonstop in good time. Started at 9:30, reaches the top at 11, then ran back down to complete at 11:35. Climb is a little difficult, definitely not an easy one for beginners. Day was cool and clear. Got stuck in one of the patches of mud left over from the previous days rain and had to wriggle my feet loose, was fun. Traffic was moderate along with some cows. The view from the top was absolutely gorgeous. I could see all of the Bay. I will for sure be hiking this one again.

Amazing hiking. And a small rock climbing was a amazing experience.

We loved this hike! We started across the street from the parking lot went up dipsea then through Matt Davis, it would be easier on the knees if you started Matt Davis then went down hill through dipsea part. This hike had everything .. flowers, tons of greenery, redwoods, beach views and my favorite waterfalls! The ladder is a cool touch too! It is wet and you prob will get muddy! Thankfully we did end up downloading the map because we accidentally veered off the hike and it added an extra hour to our hike but all in good fun! We went on a Sunday, started around 11 am and there wasn’t too many people!

Very green and scenic during this time of the year! I would recommend hiking during the winter and spring while it’s still green. The trail are not marked well so make sure you pay attention and follow the map on your phone. Parking is very difficult, be prepared.

Mt. Diablo comes alive in the winter!

Amazing place. Gorgeous trail and views. If you go during Dec-March you will also enjoy views of elephant seals. Remarkable animals.
Trail is easy, with some walks on sand dunes. My 6 year old had no issues

Nothing to write home about.

No shade, my dogs and I over heated 20 min into the hike. The day we went we saw a lot of people running down the hill with their dogs who were over heated. If you go, go early in the morning or it will be too hot.

This is my favorite winter hike. I like single track so I take Donner to Hetherington to Wasserman and avoid a good portion of the fire roads. On the return I get to Back Creek via Tickwood.

The view is SPECTACULAR! To avoid the crowds and find easy parking, I recommend parking in the Ohlone College parking garage. It’s free.

This trail is totally separate from the one that 90% of the Bay Area use. It’s also more beautiful, imho. The two trails converge near the summit.


Great hike, amazing sites, if windy can can get cold, and watch out for rouge waves!!

Nice hike. Rock climbing at the end was the most exciting part of this hike :P

25 days ago

Wonderful trail! Parking is very limited so get there early. Lots of elevation gain but trail is well marked & maintained so take your time and enjoy the surroundings. Absolutely stunning.

Mission Peak is a Bay Area and local legend. The place that instagram ruined. if you havent been you have to go. If youve been before there are plenty of alternate routes via Ohlone, Sunol, or the beastly HH to avoid the crowds.

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