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Henry Cowell Redwoods State Park is a state park near Santa Cruz, California that is beloved for it's old growth redwood groves that date back hundreds of years in addition to second-growth redwoods. Other old growth trees such as madrones, oak trees, Douglas fir, and ponderosa pine trees are also on display at this park, as well as iconic wildlife like banana slugs who make their home in this Northern California redwood forest. The Observation Deck Loop is a great place to view these big trees. The tallest tree in Henry Cowell State Park is about 285 feet tall, and about 16 feet wide. You can also see the John C. Fremont tree where Lt. Fremont camped while surveying for the US government prior to California statehood. The oldest redwood trees in the park are about 1400 to 1800 years old. With over 20 miles of hiking trails and a nature center, this Santa Cruz County park makes a great weekend trip from San Francisco or the Monterey Bay. Mountain biking is also super popular on the scenic trails in this park, and visitors can also visit the beautiful Garden of Eden swimming hole. Henry Cowell Redwoods State Park is near Felton on Highway 9 in the Santa Cruz Mountains. The Roaring Camp Railroad also goes through the park and is a delight for kids and adults alike. The Day Use Annual Pass is accepted at this park. Open Sunrise to Sunset.

amazing trail!

Good for a walk with your furry friend.

This trail is great for beginning trail running! It's a pretty easy trail with a slow incline. The trail is really beautiful with the creek and big redwood trees. I wore my normal running shoes instead of hiking books, and I didn't have any trouble crossing the creek. It was a warm day but much cooler on the trail.

1 month ago

Took Pipeline road trail to Ridge Fire trail to get to observatory point. Hiking through the redwoods on the pipeline trail is so beautiful! Ridge trail is so interesting. It goes up the mountain but the path is covered in white beach sand. Beach sand on top of a mountain is unheard of. This is because the top of the mountain used to be under the ocean 10 million years ago!!! Entire hike (round trip) is about 6.5km and it took 2 hours - from the beginning of pipeline to observation deck and back.

hiking
1 month ago

Great place to take the dog. I enjoyed seeing friendly people along the way.

Great hike if you have your dog with you!

hiking
1 month ago

Scenery: 4
Views: 2
Difficulty: 3.5
Crowds: 3
Shade: 5

My 1-5 Rating Scale Comparisons for above:
5 for Scenery; Mcway Falls Julia Pfeiffer Burns SP
4.5 for Scenery: Berry Creek Falls Big Basin State Park
4 for Scenery: Steep Ravine Trail

5 for Views: Nimitz Trail Tilden Park
5 for Views: Ridge Trail San Bruno Mtn Park
4.5 for Views Montara Mtn Summit San Pedro County Park
4 for Views Rancho Canada Del Oro Bald Peaks trail

5 for Difficulty: Junipero Serra Peak
4 for Difficulty: Mount El Sombroso Loop Trail

hiking
1 month ago

Lots of poison oak, but if you stay on the path, you’re fine. A few spots where you can take dogs down to the river.

Yes can confirm the graham hill trail is not recommended due to poison oak over growth..powder hill is open and in great condition.. i would recommend parking about a mile down the road toward sc from the spot the directions take u to because it is free rather than ten bucks!

1 month ago

Beautiful trail. Allows opportunity to walk over streams on large fallen trees. A workout but accessible for a wider variety of hiking and fitness levels.

Magic... peaceful!!

I grew up in a house along the San Lorenzo river- across Henry Cowel park and in the summer got to enjoy the constant sound of train whistles and bus loads of loud unappreciative school kids- the redwood loop is my favorite- such rich history from a president falling asleep on a log- to a hallowed out tree where if my memory serves me right, a squatter tired of society’s pace took shelter.
Can’t bring dogs though, low blow park- low blow- I love my dog, and I love breaking big and bending as many rules , laws and decrees as possible- soooooo.......Great place to take your dog!

on Fall Creek

hiking
1 month ago

A beautiful hike shaded by the trees. I went early on a Sunday morning and saw about two other hikers for my 2.5 miles in. On the way out, however, I saw easily 20+ other hikers. I’d love to go again and get an even earlier start. There were very infrequent, brief sections of the path that were narrow, rocky, and/or interrupted by fallen trees.

best hike ever! easy not moderate, my kids love it!.

1 month ago

Great trail along the creek, wonderful redwood trees and other flora. All the trail is in the shade so perfect for hot summer days. Note that at one point the trail collapsed, there is a huge tree fallen on the creek, on which you should walk to continue.

2 months ago

Definitely a favorite now. We went August 25, the weather was perfect and in the morning about 9am, there was still parking, but it was filling up..

The first of the hike is where you gain your elevation. Coming back was all downhill. The redwoods are always breathtaking and do not disappoint and the creek is just a bonus.

In August there was still enough water rushing through the creek. It is nice and refreshing to stick your feet in after hiking for a few hours.

As we got closer to finishing the hike more people were headed in and it got crowded. Definitely worth getting an early start if you want some quiet time with the redwoods.

hiking
2 months ago

Too many people and walking up on someone dropping their drawers close to the creek was the final straw.

hiking
2 months ago

WARNING - the trail is completely eroded at https://www.google.com/maps/search/37.06963,-122.10235 going through older comments now I see others mention this and some say you can get through by going into the creek but it may have gotten worse. The creek has a lot of fallen trees in it so not clear it can be reasonably traversed and from the point at which you would need to go through it, it isn't clear you can get back on the trail or how long you'll have to keep climbing over fallen trees in the creek.

The trail is beautiful though but if you do it plan enough time to get to the erosion point and then go back out the way you came so the distance is closer to 14 miles.

Easy hike, beautiful trail by the river.

When we arrived at the trail, the parking attendant told us that the graham hill trail was actually 1.1 miles and overrun with poison oak (ok for people but not so much for dogs).

She recommended going down a mile south towards treetop drive to pipeline trail, which was a in and out trail that totaled 6.6 miles. That was beautiful, on a paved path, featured amazing redwoods, some views, and a river. Also free parking!

hiking
2 months ago

What a rewarding hike. The look out point is breathtaking.

Done this loop a couple of times. Nothing more humbling than being surrounded by redwoods!

One of the best hikes I’ve hiked in the Bay Area.
Offers a little bit of all landscape.
We hiked a little over 7 miles with my 12yr old son, 7yr old daughter and wife - without complaints!

Fun easy walk with friends with very young children. They loved the tree they could walk inside of.

3 months ago

No... just, no.

walking
3 months ago

We went there with our dog! There are few trails where you can bring your dog (on a leash). Was really beautiful and peaceful. We even found a small piece of creek to refresh. We’ll definitely return!

on Fall Creek

hiking
3 months ago

Beautiful Trail!

Excellent 12k running trail.

The creek is a great place for young kids to play, but the slope heading up from it is very steep. We had to carry our 2 year old in a SSC. The underbrush is very overgrown this time of year (July) and lots of poison oak to look out for. The “shortcut” across this loop is extremely overgrown and steep slippery sections. I wouldn’t really recommend it for young children. Without the app and an active data connection, we would not have found our way as the trail markings are terrible!

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