Explore the most popular hiking trails in Armstrong Redwoods State Reserve with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Great hike but grueling! Be warned, this is 5.8 miles and 1600+ ft gain, not what is advertised on All Trails nor on the park map! The Park map says this loop is 1100 ft gain and 5.6 miles. That additional unadvertised 500 ft gain is REAL. The ascent is quite steep for the first 2.5-3 miles without much letting up. I made the mistake of starting the hike with only about 2 hours of solid daylight left, thinking I was in for only an 1100 ft gain, and I had to hoof it really the whole way and made it back within 2 hrs and 15 minutes. I'd say this is more of a day hike than a quick jaunt, entirely due to the ascent. That said, if you are looking for an intense quick jaunt that will really test your stamina, this is your ticket. The views at the top are worth a great rest for a snack, some pics, and regrouping. I didn’t have time to do a real break, due to the waning daylight, but got some great shots before booking it back down.

Paul is spot on - you need to pay attention to the map or you could easily end up off the main trail. Strava GPS read 8.1 miles at the trail end/Armstrong tree. A great hike.

One of the most beautiful trails, I started in the free parking lot outside of the park behind the bathrooms, it was a steady up hill but not to to bad but a great workout with few people on the trail, but the way down is where the beauty of the trail comes into view.

There are lots of trails off the main trail so keep a close eye on your map.
When you get to the top you have 5 different choices but the AllTrails map only shows 3.
I will return here is was fun

Very easy and beautiful!
Perfect for little children and strollers (and wheelchairs too!).

hiking
1 month ago

Lots of up up hill on this hike depending on which end you start. There are many trails off of this trail to extend you hike but bring plenty of water. It’s easy to get lost even with a map. Ended up near BullFrog Campgrounds. That being said our 5.2 mile hike was 9.7 miles. However it’s a great workout and much warmer than you would think for the woods. Lots of sun up on the ridge. Can’t say it enough, bring lots of water!

hiking
2 months ago

Armstrong Woods is just the most beautiful place! And if you love redwoods, you must visit this park. Being new to hiking, the East Ridge trail portion of this loop seemed pretty doable on 'paper', at 2.2 miles. It can be approached from either the parking area at the park entrance, or by walking out to the picnic area (both places have bathrooms), about 0.7 miles first. I liked the latter, since it gave me a chance to warm up. As others have pointed out, this trail starts out (either approach) and continues to be quite steep, lots of inclines/declines and seems more "moderate" than "easy" . Being new at this, I appreciated that there were trail markers, and benches to sit at several points. I also like that there were no bikes or dogs allowed - it kept the trail less busy. Brought trekking poles - very helpful with the steep ups and downs. First time took me about 1.25 hours. Trail very well maintained and incredible beauty throughout. Take care with tree roots, as others have pointed out.

hiking
2 months ago

Great hike, but definitely more strenuous than this site indicates.

The trail is pretty easy to follow and the beauty of the redwoods can’t be beat. I haven’t been here in years but feel inspired to go back soon.

Pretty easy trail. Trees were amazing & the trail was nice

2 months ago

Great place to take out-of-town visitors who want to ogle redwoods without too much hiking—and without the massive crowds of Muir Woods. Much of the trail is wheelchair accessible. Good signage. We went on July 5th, arrived around 4:30pm. Plenty of people, but not too crowded.

The hike was actually 6.8 Miles with 1558 elevation gain. The redwoods portion was beautiful. There are very steep switch backs and a steep grade going up and down. I’m recovering from an ALC surgery 7 months and I had to watch my son who is an active 6 year old from not falling off the ridge. I wouldn’t say it’s moderate. It was more strenuous than an average hike. My wife who is an avid hiker was not pleased to that it was not 5.2 miles as the app stated. We made it with sore bodies at the end of the hike. The top of the views were beautiful. The waterfall was an additional mile and a half so we decided not to add more to our already long hike. It took us a about 3.5 hours to complete with breaks.

Compared to other redwood parks (Montgomery Woods, Humboldt Redwoods, Redwoods NP) it was okay. I did go when it was sunny and I think redwoods are best in the rain.

Lovely hike through the woods and beautiful overlooks at ridge line. Recorded it on my Strava app and it’s just 4.2 miles for the entire East Ridge/Pool Ridge loop. Great place to spend the morning.

My friends and I had an amazing time. So much gorgeous nature and scenery. Insane views. Totally worth it. HOWEVER, as some have mentioned, it’s about 8 miles, NOT a little over 5. There is a lot of incline and it’s more strenuous than seems implied. There is also several forks in the road and we got a little lost (not by much, maybe 20 minutes extra) but still. In total it ended up being a 9 mike, 4 hour hike. That was with breaks and taking in the views. As I said though, totally worth it

5 months ago

Great workout ! Not many views due to trees .... but STEEP and a great self challenge ... the park is beautiful when you come
Down ... levels for All , but this one is a great beginning ...

Started the hike off with the incline up to 600ft elevation before looping back down. Great weather on the day I hiked. Will come back to climb a little higher.

hiking
5 months ago

Like others have mentioned, this trail is definitely more moderate than easy but it's such a beautiful hike. You can take your time and really soak the redwoods in while you catch your breath ;)

Very challenging, uphill climb. But worth it. Beautiful

Great glutes workout due to the uphill. Love that this hike is mostly forest but with the reward of a view at the top (midway’sh) of the hike. For folks just starting to get back into shape (like myself) this will be challenging but def doable. Just take your time, bring water and dress in layers.

Going up East Ridge is moderate and uphill the rest of the way into Pool Ridge, looping back is easier. Nice hike with great views at to top of East Ridge. I went with a friend so I didn't know much about the hike but not many Redwoods on the hike until the end when going back! Just be warned :)

I would rate this trail as moderate due to how strenuous it is. Beautiful views at the top of the ridge!

We did this hike in the afternoon a got a bit dark inside the woods. Nice hike uphill, good workout.

Easy and short. Lots of great redwoods!

Stunning hike. Loved the terrain, the smells, the silence. Make sure you ask the Rangers if the Pool Ridge Trail is closed. We told the man at the visitor’ desk that we were doing the East Ridge/Pool Ridge Trail but where they meet the trail was closed and there were no signs. We called the ranger station and they said that the trail had been closed for a year but they were just now making the signs!!! He told us what to do to reconnect further down. My advice would be to NOT close a trail without having the signs ready to prevent people getting lost......

This is a beautiful hike with a pretty steady and challenging climb to a stunning view. We went on a foggy morning and ended up above the clouds at the top. The last bit of the hike takes you through the giant redwoods of Armstrong Woods. Stop by the ranger station for a free map before starting. Parking is free in the first lot you reach off of the main road. Recommend hiking shoes.

Love this trail for it's ease and peacefulness.

Great hike, significantly longer and greater elevation than posted (7.9 m/1700ft). Today was beautiful, but the views must be amazing on a clear day!

trail running
8 months ago

I’m biased as I LOVE Armstrong woods but as an obstacle course racer I find the variance in up/downhill as well as terrain change (roots, steps, dirt, rock, etc.) ideal for training. As well as ideal for beautiful scenery! Parking can be a bit crazy if you go during peak hours but you can park along the road right before the lot no problem. Bathrooms, trail stops, and signage adorn throughout (east ridge trail can be a bit wonky at the top though) so you never feel lost. Check it out!

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