hiking

trail running

walking

no dogs

nature trips

forest

birding

kid friendly

Butano State Park, situated in the Santa Cruz Mountains midway between Santa Cruz and Half Moon Bay, is prized for the diversity of its habitats and wildlife, and for the depth of its solitude. Many visitors to Butano- thought to be named after a drinking cup made from a bull’s horn- find it the perfect place to shed everyday stresses. Nature’s vital processes can be seen everywhere. The unusual bend of a redwood tree tells the story of a long-ago earthquake. Elsewhere, the root of an alder tree begins eight feet up its trunk before reaching the ground, revealing the history of flooding in this area. The Candelabra redwood tree, with five huge branches jutting upright parallel to the trunk, is an odd natural phenomenon on a parcel recently added to the park. Those who take the time to stroll along a park trail or set up a tent will discover the beauty and solace of one of California’s least-known parks. The park is on the San Mateo Coast, off Highway One. Three miles northeast of the Gazos Creek Coastal Access Point by way of Gazos Creek Road, and about 4.5 miles southeast of Pescadero by way of the Pescadero and Cloverdale Roads. The Day Use Annual Pass is accepted at this park.

hiking
10 days ago

Pretty trees, mostly shaded, not too steep, lots of poison oak.

Great easy hike for the family with plenty of cover from the sun. Clean well kept trail. Kids saw tons of banana slugs!

hiking
13 days ago

Easy hike for the family with plenty of cover free m the summer sun. kids found over 60 banana slugs. Also a very well maintained trail.

hiking
13 days ago

Loved this hike. Was able to do this hike with my 18 month old son. Beautiful. Very much plan to do this hike again

hiking
25 days ago

hiking
25 days ago

hiking
29 days ago

Awesome loop! I'd rate this as pretty challenging, and I'm very athletic; big inclines and steep descents, lots of hot exposed ridge. Peaceful and serene--SO quiet! Epic views from Canyon Trail and Indian Camp. Where it's not exposed ridge, it's lush, shady, gorgeous forest. Lots of poison oak!! I went from park HQ up Jackson Flats to Canyon, then down Indian Trail/Olmo Fire, and accidentally missed the branch for Doe Ridge Trail/Goat Hill Trail, but it was a lovely trek nonetheless, and Olmo eventually connects up with Goat Hill. Make sure you have a trail map because some of the turns aren't marked. Would be great for backpacking; two campgrounds along the way!

hiking
1 month ago

Great hike with a bit of everything. Shade and redwoods. Broad vistas. Ocean views.

Only downside is that parking is $10

Nice and easy trail. Somehow crowded at the beginning.

hiking
1 month ago

The map shows the trail head at the ranger kiosk. Temporary parking only. Proceed farther down to the first picnic area. Take the trail out the back of the picnic area and turn right. Then climb up a beautiful, but steep switch back. There's a view of the Pacific Ocean at the top of the ridge. The rest is a shaded fire road in the Redwoods.