hiking

views

nature trips

birding

wild flowers

walking

no dogs

trail running

wildlife

forest

mountain biking

kid friendly

waterfall

horseback riding

camping

At the eastern fringe of the San Francisco Bay Region, Mount Diablo, elevation 3,849 feet, stands alone on the edge of California’s great Central Valley. At this point, the Coast Range consists only of low hills, none high enough to block the view from the upper slopes of the mountain. As a result, the view is one of the best in the bay. Many visitors to Mt. Diablo head straight for the summit to enjoy the famous view from the observation deck area. Summer days are sometimes hazy, and the best viewing is often on the day after a winter storm. Then, you can look to the west, beyond the Golden Gate Bridge, to the Farallon Islands; southeast to the James Lick Observatory on Mount Hamilton at 4,213 feet elevation; south to Mount Loma Prieta in the Santa Cruz Mountains at 3,791 feet elevation; north to Mount Saint Helena in the Coast Range at 4,344 feet, and still farther north to Mount Lassen in the Cascades at 10,466 feet. North and east of Mount Diablo, the San Joaquin and Sacramento Rivers meet to form the twisting waterways of the Delta. To the east beyond California’s great Central Valley, the crest of the Sierra Nevada seems to float in space. With binoculars, you may even be able to pick out Half Dome in Yosemite National Park. Mount Diablo State Park is one of the ecological treasures of the San Francisco Bay Area with entrances in Walnut Creek, Black Hawk, and Danville. Every season in the park has its special qualities. Discover for yourself the mountain's beautiful wildflowers, its extensive trail system, fascinating wildlife and distinctive rock formations. View the stars from its lofty heights, bike ride to its 3,849 foot summit or explore the more remote trails by horseback. The park offers hiking, biking, horseback riding and camping. Dogs must be on a leash under your control at all times. Dogs are not allowed on trails. Dogs must be in a tent, camper or enclosed vehicle during the night. There are plenty of picnic areas as well as camping at Juniper Campground. Road bikers enjoy rides up North Gate or South Gate Road and the descents are just as fun. Mountain biking is also possible on many of the single track trails. Gates open 8am and close at sunset. Visitors should plan on being back at the parking area to be in their vehicles by sunset and headed out to avoid being locked in.

hiking
4 days ago

Did this hike New Year's Day. 45° with windchill, a little too crowded for my tastes, but worth the struggle! 2.5 hours on the ascent; an hour and a half coming down. I suggest starting as early as possible. The crowds my partner and I encountered were probably due to our late morning start. Plenty of bathrooms along the route, but be aware that the summit restrooms may be out of order or locked. Lower summit has picnic tables and restrooms. Next time I will definitely stop there for a break and snacks.

Great hike. If there are better views please tell me where!

Great hike, amazing views. Less traveled than many routes on Diablo. We had wind gusts up to 60 mph, which is unusual, but made it more adventurous. Would strongly recommend for someone who wants a decent workout in a relatively short hike.

A most excellent hike. 15 miles and about 3900 feet of gain. I hiked clockwise like other reviewers have suggested and glad I did. Not as rocky as I thought it would be though. Not much of a view due to clouds and fog but I was not disappointed. Only saw two other hikers. 6.5 hours with a half hour hanging out in the Visitor’s Center having lunch. Can’t wait to hike more trails in this stellar park.

Gorgeous trail with great wildflowers, rolling green hills and waterfalls at every step.

hiking
12 days ago

Best Mt. Diablo hike! Today I experienced the strongest winds ever in my life and rain too! Very adventurous experience hiking the ridge lines and cresting the summits in the stormy conditions. Great time!

hiking
13 days ago

This is the first hike in 2019 and we loved it very much. We entered summit trail from South Gate where it connects with green valley trail. It’s 12.2 miles. Definitely challenging but rewarding at the same time.

Got here early last Sunday and it was a quiet hike up with lots of bird song. i loved the views near the top but this is more of a fire road and not a lot of diversity of terrain. Felt accomplished to the to the top in 2 hours and down in am hour and a half. I’d do it again but prefer the Mitchell Canyon ascent for variety.

Just got back into hiking before Thanksgiving and this was a great hike. Challenging; but, wasn't too overwhelming. Took a little detour to the observation center to see the view. That made it worth it. Clear day and beautiful views. Was about 34 degrees when we started. Wore layers. Should have brought gloves and something to cover my ears; but, wasn't horrible. Will definitely do this one again!!

Almost constant elevation gain at a 20-30 degree incline. Beautiful scenery and five posts along the way showing you what periods the rocks are from which is pretty cool and a good reason to stop. Saw hawks, deer, and plenty of little birds along the way. One bathroom up midway and a few on the summit.
Worth it. On a clear day you can supposedly see more land around you than any other point in the continental 48 states.
$10 state park fee to drive up to Rock City.

mountain biking
15 days ago

nice ride. Went new years day and it was brisk and windy..the wind certainly didnt help as it was blowing towards us. the grade can be kinda difficult as the horses make a mess of the trail as it dries. but we powered through..an amazing view of Mt. Diablo summit and the valley. there was a downed bridge in the beginning but its easy to navigate through. probably wont do this trail again though.

18 days ago

Great hike. Cold in winter. Bring layers and food and water. Wear sunscreen!

This was a challenging one for sure. We started out from the Mitchell Canyon Visitor Center around 10:30am and we went clockwise through Eagle Point Trail. This was the recommended route from many other reviewers, and we are so glad we took their advice. The incline to the summit was at times pretty rough with steep inclines. Especially when you're close to the summit, there were long stretches of just uphill. There is a really nice visitor center at the top for you to learn about the park's ecosystem, and pretty stunning panoramic views of the bay area. It's pretty windy and cold at the top, so dress accordingly. The route back down through the Campground Trail was, thankfully, not too rocky and not slippery, which can be really rough on your knees. It was actually a nice descend as the sun was beginning to set. By the time we got back to the visitor center it was about 5:30pm. My only minor gripe with this trail was that near the summit, you'll see that there are a bunch of cars and tourists that just made the drive up to the summit, and it just kinda takes away from the seclusion you get throughout the entire trip. Otherwise, its definitely a challenging but rewarding hike that you'll be proud to have completed. Just be prepared for it being chilly up top, bring food for the long hike, and bring head lamps just it takes longer than you expect and it gets dark.

Great hike. Amazing views. Elevation change can be a bit strenuous but totally worth it. I also really enjoyed going through the welcome center at the summit.

Written by my awesome 6 year old: “mount Diablo was great. It was very high. A lot of falling in the process. My favorite thing was the nature. Like an animal. For example, a bird. It was a really good hike. I think you might love it.”

Got to the South Gate at 8:00am (there is a self check in just past the gate if the guard is not on time, but the guard showed up promptly at 8am) parked at Rock City, and had the entire mountain to myself. Did not see one hiker on the way up. The signs are worth stopping and reading, great geology lesson. When you get to the summit go to the far end (away from the tower) and there is a little trail that gives you a great view of the city on a clear day. Walk the trail around the summit, great views. Took me a little less then 3 hrs, but it's not a race, enjoy the views and climb a few rocks along the way!

Loved this hike. I thought it was more of a hard hike than moderate. The incline was pretty steep.

hiking
25 days ago

Lots of hills, cows and views! Mostly wide roads except for the “secret feeling” portion through the woods.

Road biking. Its a tough one up but easy down. LOL.

26 days ago

Nice hike. Steady climb to the top. Great views along the way. Lots of different plant-life. Lots of cool placards/signage to help you learn about the mountain's geology and the history of the area.

Wow! Great trail! I added on Foothills Trail to bring the hike in at 8.3 miles. Love all the rock formations, streams, woods and rolling hills! After more rain, should see a waterfall too! I didn’t feel that it was a hard trail, definitely moderate but not hard.

Just a little strenuous and good views. Usually not too crowded.

1 month ago

great hiking did in 8 hours with about a 20 minute break at mount diablo peak

1 month ago

great workout did trail in 8 hours with about a 20 minute break at mount diablo peak

Good training for the big boys like shasta or whitney. lots of elevation gain. took me 4.5 hours to do it all and i was beat.

Amazing in the winter with rain and fog. I expected it to be a bit tougher but maybe with the heat of spring or summer it earns that hard rating. I’d highly recommend doing it on an overcast day like today though.

Great hike, was able to complete in 3 hours. Pretty challenging climb, and rewarded with gorgeous views of the area. Finding the start of the trail was a bit tough since there isn’t any service at the campground where I parked, but once on the trail the markings were easy to follow. I absolutely encourage anyone looking for a tough 8 mile hike to try this out!

Spring is best for the wildflowers here.

Another great Diablo loop from Mitchell trail.

2 months ago

Great loop hike. Spring time perfect.

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