Explore the most popular wildlife trails in Muir Woods National Monument with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Literally the best hike I’ve ever taken in my life. No joke. Did an up and back with my sister and we decided to take another loop route down from Muir Woods. Followed the stream up to the top of the ridge then back down. Amazing ocean views. Diverse vegetation. And of course unforgettable walk around the giant redwoods in Muir Woods. One for the memory books.

Really nice trail. It’s been awhile since I’ve been hiking in the area and this was a nice trail to get reacquainted! We started in the Muir Woods overflow parking lot (remember that reservations for parking are now always required, and they scan your barcode at the entrance so be sure to download before your trip; there’s no service in the park). From the overflow parking lot, you can hop right onto the Dipsea Trail and hike up to Ben Johnson which will take you straight to the scenic walk and visitor’s center. Redwoods require fog for much of their water supply, so regardless of time of year, some places will be wet. If you start at the Dipsea trail from the parking lot, you miss the ticket booth so may want to give a donation at the end. If you start from the scenic walk and take Ben Johnson to Dipsea you’ll need to pay $10/adult to enter. If you have more time, I’d definitely recommend the Matt Davis trail from Stinson Beach, too!

hiking
13 days ago

Amazing views all the way through! We did this Trail counterclockwise since we couldn’t find parking at Muir Woods. Beautiful nevertheless!

Decent trail. Would rate easy to moderate. Great views.

hiking
20 days ago

Great hike with a bit of a climb opening up to a beautiful view of the Bay Area.

Fascinating trail, it looks like someone has done gardening throughout the trail , if you go from Stinson beach to Mill valley, it’s steep

Amazing historic trail going through the woods, grassy hilly pastures and along the coast. I parked on the highway and walked down and then on the way back took the matt Davis trail up and connected to old mine trail to get back to the dipsea. That was about 15 miles and worth it

Wow! Started off surrounded by giant redwoods and Sequoias, ended surrounded by the ocean. A beautiful hike. Very challenging going up and over the mountain and lots of stairs in parts. Only went out...not back (that would have been a bit crazy for my family). Loved every second of this trail!

Not going to lie, that hurt. Hurt so good :) Gotta do it, though, it is quintessential Bay Area. It was a foggy, misty day, perfect for not overheating on this brutal hike. I started at the stairs from Old Mill Park in Mill Valley, which climb about 760 ft in a mile up to the Panoramic trailhead where the AllTrails route begins. I think in order to say you did the Dipsea you must include the stairs...you have to earn it :) Also, that’s where the infamous race begins, so start there if you’re training. FYI a bridge is closed in Muir Woods until summer and so you have to take Deer Park Fire Road just a tad south of the Dipsea on Muir Woods Road.

Amazing foliage

nice chill beautiful hike

The only way to the trail head we could find is through the main park entrance and then taking bridge number 4 and Ben Johnson trail up where it intersected with Dipsea trail. We followed the Dipsea trail sign after that but it looped and we noticed from Garmn navigation device that we were only a mile away from the car at some point. So we had an option of taking the road and coming back to the car or going back the same way we came in. So most probably we were on a sort of different route but still enjoyed climbing up and later descending in redwood forest as well as distance Pacific views from the top. Even came across a deer.
The trail was crowded and full of trail runners who ran despite the risk of tripping hazard. One of them ended up falling and bleeding...ouch

The only way to the trail head we could find is through the main park entrance and then taking bridge number 4 and Ben Johnson trail up where it intersected with Dipsea trail. We followed the Dipsea trail sign after that but it looped and we noticed from Garmn navigation device that we were only a mile away from the car at some point. So we had an option of taking the road and coming back to the car or going back the same way we came in. So most probably we were on a sort of different route but still enjoyed climbing up and later descending in redwood forest as well as distance Pacific views from the top. Even came across a deer.
The trail was crowded and full of trail runners who ran despite the risk of tripping hazard. One of them ended up falling and bleeding...ouch

It is soooo goood trail!!!!!

hiking
3 months ago

So we did this trail backwards which I think I preferred since I hate walking downhill. For all the downhill part of the hike we went uphill which seemed hard to some of my hiking companions. Very nice views and not a lot of hikers on the trail. Couldn't record the entire route; the app was killing my phone while tracking and battery was draining fast.

Great trail I went on a weekday and the open grassland part was gorgeous with rolling mist. The part under the trees was green mossy and shaded. Ran into a mama dear and her baby on the trail and waited for them to pass before I continued on. Ben Johnson is a gorgeous continually shaded Redwood single track trail but a long continuous uphill had to take a lot of breaks! 4 instead of 5 stars because the half way point passes through the Muir Woods monument which was hectic with tourists. I lost them quickly as soon as I got on the Ben Johnson tho!

Loved the trail but there are a TON of stairs. I don’t know that I would call this moderate.. I brought friends and after the first mile up the steep stairs we all wanted to turn back. I wish I knew how to do this hike backwards..

Great workout! Lots of stairs and incline.
My friends and I started at the wrong trailhead...not sure how...but we ended up adding an additional 4miles roundtrip to the hike.

Just finished the hike. Decent kickstart to my hiking season. The inclines gave me a good workout. The trail itself is pretty exposed. The wind was pretty brutal today, but grateful for it because it would've been very hot if not for the wind. There is no shade at all. The coastal views were nice.

Awesome trail! We started from Bootjack Campground and hiked TCC trail to Cardiac Hill. Amazing views from there!

It was a fantastic hike and has some great views of the bay on Cardiac Hill. We parked at the Stinson Beach Parking lot. We ended up clocking 12.4 miles on the gps since there is a detour at Muir Woods from Fern Creek Trail to Dipsea Trail. I think this adds about a mile where you walk along Muir Woods road to the Fire Road/Redwood Creek Trail to get back to the Dipsea trail since the bridge is out close the Muir Woods visitor center.

Beautiful trail. Do note reservations are required ahead of time to park at the lot. We had to park at a different trailhead and backtrack to Dipsea.

hiking
3 months ago

Great trail. Lots of trees to get cover from the sun.
Lots of stairs to climb.
Tall trees and a creek along the way

Awesome Trail. I would rate this trail as moderate.

Step up to breathtaking views of this beautiful earth and feel one with our natural habitat on the Dipsea Trail. This was our first real Marin hike; definitely the gateway drug to other hikes in Marin/Mill Valley. Been going every weekend since. Just know you can’t get an Uber at Stinson beach.

Not really a heavy trafficed trail. Plenty of shade, lots of great vista points to see.

hiking
3 months ago

Pretty good trail, for first half of the trail there’s a beautiful stream on your left clear and clean water!
The canopies on these trails and big trunk trees give you the feeling of Lilliputians in the land of giants :)

Not too many people, so if you want to do this solo ... you have complete privacy! But if you want to go with friends, absolutely fun uninhibited.

Absolutely loved the weather on feb 3rd, moderate and the sun was out. Couldn’t record the complete trail due to phone issues, but the round trip would take you about 3-4 hours with short 10min breaks every hour.

hiking
3 months ago

Love this hike! You’ll have beautiful views of the creek as you go alongside it for almost half the hike. Lots of great stopping points along the way if you wanna take a break for a lunch in the woods! Muir Woods now require reservations for parking or the shuttle, so plan accordingly.

This trail is awesome! Can get very tiring with the ups and downs, but there are stairs built in to some parts. It goes in and out of trees and open areas. Great views

01.26.18

If you park where the directions on the app send you it will eliminate the need to make John Muir woods reservations. It’s better anyway because aren’t you there to hike? The parking area is just before you turn right on Shoreline from Panoramic Hwy. Looks like a turnout. There’s a sign there marking where the Dipsea trail starts.
You can do this hike with regular tennis shoes, not too difficult. There are some steep parts that will be a workout if you’re out of shape but they go by pretty quick. The scenery on the trail is great and the the trail is clearly marked the whole time. Once you’re in the John Muir section it’s all even ground, bathrooms, gift shop, and you’re walking on wood planks. If you want to avoid paying $10 at the welcome center go left where the road splits going into Muir Woods. If you wanna spend $10 go to the right. You could also be a decent human being and donate a Hamilton to Johnny Muir as a thank you for putting the wooden planks in to make the ascents easier. I would do this trail again.

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