Looking for a great trail in Skyline Ridge Open Space Preserve, California? AllTrails has 6 great hiking trails, trail running trails, views 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 3 moderate trails in Skyline Ridge Open Space Preserve ranging from 2 to 6.1 miles and from 2,076 to 2,572 feet above sea level. Start checking them out and you'll be out on the trail in no time!

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views

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lake

Hours: half an hour before sunrise to half an hour after sunset

One of my favorite hikes. the loop takes me about an hour and a half. There are areas of shade and a bit without, but the view is lovely. It's not crowded, but the trail is easy to pass- even families that settled down for a picnic.

Beautiful views. Parts of it was narrow and high up and probably wouldn’t be appropriate for younger kids unless they were really good on the trails. We found a lot of bugs I most areas. Otherwise fun trail

hiking
bugs
no shade
1 month ago

Very nice trail. Not really worth going all the way down to the second lake. I also would recommend going the loop the other way around.

The trail is really narrow and overgrown in some places, it is a pretty walk though.

hiking
5 months ago

A lot of mountain bikers on the Long Ridge portion of the trail, west of Skyline, as well as on the Canyon Trail north of Table Mountain and after the Grizzly Flat trail branch. It was a sunny day, with clear views into the Santa Cruz Mountains and beyond. The Stevens Creek was not as rushing as it was three weeks ago, and could easily be crossed by hopping from stone-to-stone, or tandem walking across logs. It gets hot on the fully-exposed Long Ridge/Peters Creek Trails by 10am, so it's best to get an early start. The Canyon trails are all in the woods, so it's shaded there.

hiking
blowdown
muddy
washed out
7 months ago

Nice easy walk around a “lake.”

Nice and easy for bringing along my 2 year old. Bathrooms at the trailhead actually had toilet paper and hand sanitizer-amazing! Lovely little lake and not crowded. I didn’t bring my BOB stroller but I do think it is “BOBable” though a bit narrow in some parts.

I did this loop clockwise to avoid a long climb out of the canyon at the end; it doesn't make much of a difference scenery-wise which way you go. The trip down and back out of the canyon (Canyon + Table Mountain trails) is almost all covered and pretty monotonous. It opens up more on the West side of Skyline, the Ridge trail has great views if it's a clear day. The trail was in good shape, a day after rain there were only a couple of slippery spots. It was largely empty on a weekday - only saw a few mountain bikers during the entire loop. Compared to other very close by hikes, this one is just OK.

Beautiful and short hike with great views and a little pond.

Sunday, September 23, 2018

A nice short hike. Several options to lengthen or shorten the loop. A few steep portions but the stretches aren’t too long. loads of restrooms on the way and ample parking. A great 2 hr nature walk

Pretty views but don't hike this in summer/dry season unless you want to be a bug buffet

Fun trail that is not very intense. A few hills, mostly when you come back up from Horseshoe lake. At the beginning you can hear road noise but once you go almost a mile it is more serene.

Great views

hiking
Saturday, April 14, 2018

So peaceful and definitely not crowded on a Friday afternoon. Also saw a mountain lion from across the lake and plenty of birds and bush rabbits!

Gorgeous and challenging!

hiking
Saturday, February 03, 2018

Beautiful views of ocean and bay. Some sunny spots and some dark, oak-shaded spots. We had a nice picnic lunch by horseshoe lake, watching the mallards and koots.

backpacking
Monday, January 29, 2018

Lovely views. Road noise can be Loud at times

hiking
Sunday, January 21, 2018

Great hike, nice lakes and pleasant views. We took Butano Loop off Sunny Jim and signage didn’t point us towards Alpine Pond so we had to backtrack. Worth it as Alpine is peaceful and serene. Came back Ipiwa and the around Horseshoe. We logged a little over 5 miles.

Saturday, December 23, 2017

Great place for hiking.

This loop is a bit of a challenge for kids under 10yo, but doable as a 3-5h walk. It definitely has enough variation to keep them interested for the whole distance. Alpine Pond is a good midpoint, and it's possible to shortcut the loop there if the ascent to Borel Hill turns out to be too much. During our visit in early May we saw amazing wildflower displays, lots of birds and two coyotes wandering near the trail.

Sunday, May 07, 2017

Views of the lake from higher elevation section of trail were nice, but the rest of the trail was just ok. Very easy for the kids.

hiking
Friday, May 05, 2017

Must do trail Ipiwa trail from Alpine Pond to Horseshoe lake, take the rim trail around Horse shoe, then return Sunny Jim trail to Butano trail to Sunny Jim trail back to alpine pond to trail head. About 3 miles, Do it with you family including kids. Not too bad, moderate, some moderate climb on return, look/beware for/of rattle snakes in the brush (We saw two) , spring wild flowers were awesome, can see the great Pacific ocean from the Ipiwa trail. Picnic Benches around both pond and lake rim and couple on trail

The first part along the ridge trail is just fantastic. The bench almost at the crest of Hickory Oaks Trail has THE BEST views. Going down Table Mountain trail wasn't my favorite, typical east side of skyline scrub and rocky path (easy ankle turner). It would be scorching in the summer. But it gets better close to Stevens Creek. There is a sign at the beginning of Table Mountain that says trail may be closed if there is flooding but it doesn't tell you IF there is flooding. I went one day after rain and it was crossable. You have to walk across some fallen logs here. Then jump across the other tributary. Canyon Trail is beautiful. BUT the last connector to Skid Road Trail IS CLOSED which meant I had to hike out to Montebello and hitch a ride back to the parking lot where the trail starts at Skyline Ridge Open Preserve. For now you may be better served going up Grizzly Flat trail back up to chestnut trail on the west side of Skyline.

hiking
Monday, January 16, 2017

The lake is beautiful, even in the middle of January. The trails weren't too crowded, and they all connect in one way or another, so we continued up Ipiwa and Alpine when we were done with the loop for some more exploring!

Sunday, January 01, 2017

This was a great hike with small children. Part of the trail has picnic tables that look over the lake. FYI, the trail is not dog-friendly. Dogs are not allowed, which was disappointing.

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