Explore the most popular birding trails in Phillip Burton Wilderness Area with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

All of the camps have potable water and are well spaced. I carried a water filter but did not need to use it.

Lake Ranch Trail is very overgrown but easily passable. No issues with ticks despite the high grass. Other trails are all very well maintained and appear to have been cut back recently.

This was a really enjoyable walk, lots of variety and overall not too difficult. Primarily shaded just the short beachfront section has little.

I went anti-clockwise to try and get down the water with reasonably early morning light. Additionally it’s always nice not to be stuck with a heavy uphill right at the end. I’d swap the short jaunt to the lake for a walk down to Alamere Falls. It’s worth a quick look but expect it to be busy.

I did the reverse of this loop as someone suggested, and it was great. A few miles up to Sky Camp with a good climb. Spent one night at campsite 6 which I would recommend as it is one with shade (several didn’t have any). Then down to Coast Trail and up and back on Bear Valley Trail for 12 miles on day 2. Lots of wildlife. Varied terrain. Some dampness with the coastal fog to the point of seeming like rain in the denser parts of the trail. The campsite has water and bathrooms so this trip was a good shakedown of recently acquired gear. No cell coverage from the trailhead.

Did the reverse to have a gradual climb. Very easy and wide start to this and very pretty.

Took the Old Pine Trial...VERY overgrown and no one else on path. We didn't get any ticks but can see how easy it would be on this trail. Do your checks. Some poison oak as well. We came out unscathed but is dampens your mood on the hike a little bit.

It gets better at the Sky Trail junction all the way back. I can see that doing the climb first might kick the average shape person's ass a little bit.

Overall a good trail and great scenery. No horses on Holidays and weekends make it easier for the hiker.

Old pine is pretty overgrown.
The Mt. Wittenberg trail was really nice, I also really enjoyed the Sky trail.
Fog burned off around 9am.
Check for ticks!

Great opportunity for a long day hike or broken up into a two-day backpacking trip. Horses, coyotes, California condors, tons of little furry friends, and the possibility of seeing Tule elk and whales off the coast!

Nice hike, exposed more than I like. Pretty easy, only challenging part for me was climbing the rocky hill towards the end.

Everything promised! If I were to go again, I would bring more water resistant gear, not because of rain but because of high wet brush.

backpacking
Tuesday, April 04, 2017

Beautiful way to see the full coast line, hills, and lakes of the area.

hiking
Wednesday, February 01, 2017

14 mile hike with only moderate incline/decline for a third of the trail. Starts off on a fire road along a stream surrounded by ferns, then follows along coastal cliffs with two opportunities to go down to the beach (one has a waterfall), then climbs 1000 ft or so giving great views of Bodega Bay before dropping back down to Bear Valley trail 0.8 miles from the end of the hike.

hiking
Wednesday, September 05, 2012

Bear Valley Trail is a flat wheelchair-safe route down close to the beach. It's a local favorite that is about 8 miles roundtrip. People walk it, run it, or bike it to within 1/2 mile of the beach. It's shaded and beautiful with the cool Pt. Reyes weather regardless of what the weather is elsewhere. At the end of the hike, there is arch rock, where, depending on the tide, you can scramble down to the beach and watch the water splash around the large natural arch. If you can't get to the beach here, you can go north 1/2 mile on the coastal trail to Kellham Beach. There is a sign and a trail with stairs helping you down. This will increase your mileage to 9 miles for the day, but it's a nice beach with not too many people.

The views at the end and the ease of the hike get it a 3 stars. It would get more, but the many users and lack of views on the way bring it down.

Many out for a stroll just stop at the Divide Meadow at 1.6 miles, sit on the tables, enjoy the sun and ocean breeze and return.

If you can handle more mileage, I always recommend doing the Skyline Trail down and the Bear Valley Back. It's more mileage, but the near-rainforest like conditions on the hills and the expansive views as you drop down to the beach make it worthwhile. See my review for the Meadow-Woodward Trail.

hiking
Monday, August 06, 2012

Nice little day hike from trail head to Arch Rock. Trail branches off to Wildcat Camp, permit needed to stay. Ideal for botany enthusiasts.

horseback riding
1 month ago

3 months ago

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