Looking for a great trail in Henry W. Coe State Park, California? AllTrails has 49 great hiking trails, trail running trails, mountain biking trails and more, with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers, and nature lovers like you. Ready for some activity? There are 30 moderate trails in Henry W. Coe State Park ranging from 2.7 to 30.8 miles and from 853 to 3,195 feet above sea level. Start checking them out and you'll be out on the trail in no time!

hiking

views

nature trips

bird watching

wild flowers

no dogs

wildlife

walking

forest

trail running

backpacking

camping

mountain biking

lake

horseback riding

Barely an hour’s drive southeast of San Jose, Henry W. Coe State Park – the largest state park in northern California - protects and preserves 87,000 acres of scenic hills and mountain ridges. This wild, largely undeveloped park welcomes backpackers, equestrians, mountain bikers, day-hikers, and anyone seeking solitude in a nearly untouched setting. Part of the Diablo Range, the park is an amalgam of high ridges, plateaus, and both narrow and open valleys. Henry W. Coe State Park sprawls over acres of high ridges and low valleys southeast of San Jose. It once belonged to a rancher named Henry Willard Coe; his heirs donated the ranch that would become the state park bearing his name. The park has few amenities, but has abundant trails for hikers, equestrians and mountain bikers. After a rainy winter, wildflowers bloom in profusion from February through March; by April the color is rampant. The landscape is rich with blue lupine and orange-yellow California poppies, bright yellow gold fields and delicate baby blue eyes. Mariposa lilies, larkspur, blue dicks and Ithuriel’s spear show themselves in late April and May. The variety and richness of the flora attract visitors from miles around. The park is open year-round for hikers, mountain bikers, backpackers, equestrians, car campers, picnickers, photographers, and people who simply like to visit parks. Hot, dry summers bring highs above 90, cooling to the 50s at night. Hikers should carry and drink plenty of water, even on less-strenuous trails. Winter is wet, with highs in the 50s and lows in the 30s. In winter, seasonal creeks can overflow and become dangerously impassable. Spring and fall are the most temperate and enjoyable times to visit. Prepare for the variable climate and rugged landscape by dressing in layers. Dogs are allowed in the main campground, paved roads and one trail that connects the Visitor Center to the parking lot off of E. Dunne Ave. Dogs are not allowed at the Hunting Hollow or Dowdy Ranch entrances or on any other trails within the park.

hiking
rocky
1 day ago

Definitely prepared enough water for the trail. The trails are really small which make it unique and fun. Be careful with all the small plants have spines that can hurt you, My ankle got scratched from those plants were really low on the ground.

mountain biking
muddy
6 days ago

hiking
muddy
over grown
8 days ago

The hard rating is no joke on this trail. Most of the trail is very steep downhill or uphill. No matter which way you go, there are both steep downhill and uphill. I do think that counterclockwise is better, but only by a little. Personally, I don't like the fact that a steep downhill is unavoidable. I took a shortcut using Jackass Trail, and it was beautiful but currently overgrown. I do not recommend hiking this trail in the rain like I did, even though it wasn't super muddy, there was enough mud to make it dangerous downhill.

Nice trail to waterhole. Beautiful expanses different kinds of terrain. Not really strenuous. Worth going left at the split at Manzanita Camp and coming back from right. The trail coming back along the creek requires 12 creek crossings but the water is low enough to use steppingstones. The crossings are great fun with out the need to change shoes. Lots of wildflowers along the route. Also lots of poison oak. Filtered shade. Would bring 2liters of water

hiking
21 days ago

What a gorgeous trail! We completed this hike yesterday May 5, there were a billion different flowers blooming, and most of the hike was fairly cool and breezy. We did it counterclockwise to minimize super-steep downhill sections, and we were very happy with the direction we chose. The final uphill was mostly shaded which was such a treat. Streams and springs are running, but zero issues rock hopping to cross. AllTrails clocked us at 15.7 miles, and it took us an even 7 hours from start to finish (including a 45 minute break to enjoy some summit margaritas).

hiking
21 days ago

We did a slightly longer version of this by staying on Hobbs Road a bit longer and taking Forest Trail back (which I recommend as it's nicely shaded and more of a trail than a road). Lots of steep downhill, so if your knees, glutes, and quads are not well strengthened, this might not be the trail for you. Good varied terrain between the creek crossings (make sure you have waterproof shoes), rock paths, tree shaded sections, and open high hills. More of a moderate trail, in my opinion. Henry Coe has lots of camping options, but something to note, a lot of the hikes are on dirt roads instead of trails. This means steeper grades than hiking trails and not as much of an escape from city life as some other trails in the area.

Fantastic route, with most of the toughest elevation at the start if you do it counter clockwise as recommended. I did the trail in about eight hours on a warm day on 4 May, including a detour via Camp Wilson and lots of stops (though I did hitch a lift along the road at the end). Three liters of water was about right for me. Kelly Lake is a great lunch spot if you start early. Recommend a side trip to the old abandoned Camp Wilson. I came across quite a few other people walking and on bikes — not surprising for good weather on a Saturday, but busier than when I've hiked in the Mount Sizer area. It's incredibly verdant and peaceful up there, with wild hills as far as you can see in every direction. Amazing flowers and trees. I saw a deer and, of course, lots of birds (and heard a lot more). Lots of turtles and garter snakes (I mean hundreds!) in Rodeo Pond. Fantastic cloud inversion (if that's the phrase) each time I've been to Henry Coe: foggy in the valley below, completely clear on the trail. One suggestion: to avoid walking the ~two miles along the road from the Coyote Creek entrance to Hunting Hollow, turn off onto the Spike Jones trail and then take Jim Donnelly back to the car park. It's all well signposted, but be careful not to miss the left turn onto Steer Ridge just past the creek near the start. If you do miss it, no worries — just take Jim Donnelly. Take some antihistamine if you're prone to hay fever and you're there in spring. And, of course, do not forget sunblock — most of the route is not shaded. You might also want insect repellant (though I didn't really need it).

hiking
1 month ago

Went clockwise, took 5 hours to complete the loop. That incline is so steep it's demoralizing! The scenery is really nice and although the creek is a pain to cross, it's not too bad and adds to the experience. Some areas have a lot of loose rocks (ankle rollers). There were more backpackers I saw than day hikers so it must be a pretty good spot for that. 4/20/2019

Perfect, easy trail. Added a couple of short detours off and back. Just enough flowers still in bloom and beautiful vistas.

If you want to catch the super bloom in the Bay Area trail this is the time. This trail is not 7.1 miles as stated. It is 10+ miles long. But it’s rated moderate with not so steep inclines or declines. There are no shade areas. The rewards are beautiful views. Wild flowers are abundant at this time of the year.

backpacking
1 month ago

Amazing trail! Definitely challenged myself backpacking to Mahoney Pond using the China Hole Trail on 4/6 and 4/7. The weather was perfect where it was sunny with a slight breeze. Had to cross the river after ~3 or so miles. A lot of uphill and downhill areas which are exposed to sun then covers into manzanita’s. The view at the top of each hill was amazing. The sight of green went on for miles. Coming back, we took advice from rangers/ volunteers and used the trail leading to The Narrows. Good thing too because the hills were so so steep. After about 3 miles from the pond we reached The Narrows. We would hike in and out of the river but it felt amazing to step into the stream while the sun was hitting us. The wildflowers on each hill were a bonus too. A lot of wildlife on this trail: deer, snakes, frogs, birds, and more. 10/10 would do again.

hiking
1 month ago

Beautiful mild/moderate spring hike with some shade along the trail.

hiking
1 month ago

Nice trail with a decent amount of elevation and some good views along the rim

hiking
1 month ago

lovely loop through open woodlands and on the open side of a hill. A wise variety of wildflowers.

hiking
1 month ago

I give it 4 stars because it's a really great workout. View is okay at the top at MT sizer. Blue Ridge has much better view. The SHORT-CUT was tiring but great work out for ur legs. We start clock wise, the last 4 miles is all uphill. Not a good idea if u are already tired. Lol I think counter clockwise would be a bit easier. My garmin watch says 16 Miles total with a gain elevation of 4,219. There is 2 creek crossing after 4 miles & before the last 4 miles to the COE headquarters. The water at the creek is above my knee. Make sure u bring plenty of water. I brought 3L of water it was just perfect. Weather was 69 degree. Also watch ur steps , I seen 3 little snake at the trail. Lot of wildflowers :) plenty of poison oaks too. Hike it yesterday. March 30,2019

We did a portion of this loop as part of a longer backpacking trip, and felt strongly enough about it to write a review! Between mile markers 1.5 and 5.0 on this hike, the trail is extremely overgrown. We each picked off about 20 ticks in this section. In late March, the creek was running fairly high, and the trail involves an unnecessary amount of creek crossings, which really slowed us down. But we did see a tiny turtle in this section, which was really cool!

hiking
off trail
over grown
1 month ago

We did this hike as part of a larger backpacking trip in late March. The amount of water in the creeks and streams appears to be VERY dependent on the time of year according to some of the comments here. The Mile Trail involved probably 15 river crossings (hopping on slippery stones), while to get to the campsite at China hole required wading through ~3-feet deep water. We were not prepared for these crossings, so they were very time consuming and cold. FYI the "Narrows" trail is the river bed, which is totally impassable in March unless you have water shoes. The scenery was beautiful, though, especially China hole! About half the time is spent in direct sun, the other half in partly-shaded forest.

hiking
off trail
over grown
2 months ago

I hiked counterclockwise and did my own version of this loop which instead of traveling down poverty flat rd I took Manzanita point rd to china hole trail and all the way through "The Narrows" (only attempt if you are an experienced hiker. Trail very hard to fallow) until I got to Los Gruzeros where I had lunch. I then took Jackass trail up to Blue Ridge rd. Jackass trail is very special and scenic in early spring also you can see the scars of the 2007 wild fire that swept through that side of the park. In total it was probably close to a 16 mile day. I went on a monday in late march so did not see a single soul on the trail which is what i prefer.

hiking
bugs
2 months ago

Nice little loop. Watch out for ticks in early season and avoid weekends = avoid the crowds.

The lesson I learned from this hike is don’t take the poverty flat trail fire road in the beginning . It is rutted and steep and boring. Follow Manzanita as shown in the trail route which ultimately joins poverty flat at the campsite/ creek location. There are two creek crossings to get to the Los Cruzeros campsite. Saw no wildflowers yet. Night very cold down to freezing.

hiking
2 months ago

Great trail. Lots of great scenery too! I cut it short for a day trip and ended at 16 miles.

Incredible numbers of very light pink/violet Shooting Stars and a few lovely Fuchsia Flowering Gooseberry plants (Ribes speciosum) in full bloom. Lots of Baby Blue Eyes and many others starting to show buds. Water crossings were often and required boots as even careful rock hopping soaked my summer shoes on 3-15-19 with lots of rain this season. Many steep up and downhills. Several small ponds along the way.

hiking
2 months ago

Hiked 3/3/19. Both creek crossings were mid-thigh on my 5’6” friend. And cold. Bring extra socks or shoes/Chacos. Other than that added spice and a few more downed trees, it’s the usual Sizer gut buster.

hiking
muddy
2 months ago

Great hike, but don't do it after heavy rain! Started at around 9am, stopped by headquarters and asked rangers about crossing Coyote Creek conditions. Rangers advised to do the loop counter-clockwise, as the south crossing would be the most difficult and so I would have option to turn back. Headed down by springs trail, and China Hole trail then cougar trail to poverty flat. Crossing was good, mid-thigh level (I'm 6'4) and calm water, so decided to push forward. Stayed on the main trail and didn't do jackass as rangers had advised of fallen trees. Climb was good, but rain and cloudy so not that much visibility for vistas. Down the shortcut was a bit tough on the legs, it must really be punishing uphill. The big issue though, came at the crossing of the Coyote Creek middle fork down from the shortcut. It was a raging torrent. I struggle for 20 min walking up river and staying on the somewhat shallower left bank to find a spot for safe crossing but no luck, fell down a couple of times, and was lucky not to be dragged down. Decided finally to risk it at the trail crossing, with a branch as a stick. Again mid-thigh level at the deepest, and definitely not safe. Luckily I made it through, but in retrospect it was very stupid and dangerous. Finished with wet hiking shoes and wet everything the last 4 miles. Overall a very intense experience. On the positive side, the trail is absolutely beautiful, saw two newts, deers, lots of birds, and will definitely be back out of the rainy season to enjoy, and try my hand at the shortcut, uphill.

hiking
muddy
2 months ago

I did this hike a couple months ago on December 29 and the scenery has changed as well as recent rains have really raised up Coyote Creek. The first crossing of Coyote Creek just before the infamous “short cut” was passable without getting wet as long as your careful about stepping on the rocks. After the crossing though be prepared to sweat as the trail ascends the short cut and gains 1400 ft of elevation in just 1.4 miles. Needles to say as I topped out onto Blue Rodge there was a nice breeze blowing and my sweat soaked shirt chilled me enough to throw on my puffy for a little while. Walking along the Blue Rodge towards Mount Sizer keep your eyes peeled as I saw many deer and birds along the way. After descending Blue Ridge Road down to Poverty Flat you intersect Coyote Creek again and this time there was no staying dry as the creek is deeper and wider here. Staying true to form the Sizer Loop has another good climb here just past Coyote Creek ascending 1,000 ft of elevation in 1.7 miles. The rest of the hike is a nice stroll along Manzanita Point Road and the Corral Trail keep your eyes open for deer out here as well. All in all I really enjoy this trail as it offers a variation of ascents and descents among the rolling hills of the bay that haven’t been encroached on by civilization.

backpacking
3 months ago

Solid loop. Did the whole thing over night. First day to Pacheco camp was 9 miles which was pretty easy. Second day was a solid 13 mile day and some of those hills are killer to climb. My feet hurt so bad right now but totally worth it. Great way to start off this year's backpacking season. Highly recomend this trail around this time when it's cool, wet, and GREEN.

I enjoyed this loop a lot and completed CCW as per AllTrails. It was overcast with on and off showers but this didn’t ruin the fun. Spectacular lake this time of year with the green moss hanging from the trees. The first half is dirt roads and open trail (with very steep initial ascent) which was enjoyable as Coe rolls out in all directions. Things get really good on the initial descent to the lake which is narrow single track and stays like that most of the way back. Even the 3km section on the road isn’t enough to mark this trail down - it was dead quiet when I was there with not a vehicle in sight. The first stream crossing can be avoided by crossing the bridge and climbing through the barbed wire. Not ideal but beats taking a soaking out of the gate. A number of other stream crossings this time of year - I’d recommend hiking poles as these made it more stable hopping from rock to rock. Only got significantly wet foot toward the end.

hiking
3 months ago

This is a great trail! Sun and tons of shade. It is easy but also has a lot of rolling hills and switchbacks. We added the Lion Spring which made it a bit longer. The views are amazing.

Giving this 3 stars because I didn’t actually make it to the trail. When I was almost to the trailhead, per the map, there was a sign saying authorized vehicles only where it turned from paved to dirt road. I was surprised this wasn’t mentioned before. Anyway, I’m not one to disregard signage and I drive and oversized camper van so that was potentially the last spot where I could turn around with enough space, and even that was really difficult. I did spot a baby bobcat crossing the toad on my way up and then of course horses, cows, deer, and other smaller wildlife. The drive was pleasant enough but I didn’t get a chance to hit the trail.

Nice trail for the winter. Fully exposed so would be warm in summer months. Note: the road in is CLOSED during the winter months to prevent erosion. We accidentally were let on the road by a rancher and subsequently were locked in the park. Received a ticket for being inside the park! Otherwise nice hike, good views and some steep climbs with solid vistas.

Load More