hiking
1 month ago

I love this hike! but I tried at the wrong time of year (early september) so I'll have to give it 4 stars. Sunol is my fave spot, but it's just so hot in the summer, even in October it can be pretty hot.

Having said all that, it's still so beautiful! We did the loop clockwise, which I recommend. That way, you do all the steep inclines first, then Little Yosemite is the grand finale. McCorkle Trail is really great when you get further out. We were greeted by beautiful red bush and yellow wildflowers. And of course, a herd of mama cows with their calves.

Water is HUGE DEAL on this trail! PACK PLENTY OF WATER! And bring a water filter, too!!! Fill up at the Visitor Center if you can! the drinking fountain wasn't working when we got there, but at the end of the hike, we realized there were some big jugs of water at the little buildings in the center. You can't rely on that, though. sometimes the visitor center is deserted. We passed over a small river right at the beginning, and then there are no water sources until you reach the campground area. Actually, a creek techiniclly runs through McCorkle Trail right before you reach the backpacking area, but it was all dried out when we got there. So if you get to the McCorkle/Backpack Road junction, you can go past the gate and walk up a steep incline to the campsites. There's an outhouse, and then further up the hill there's a water spigot. Don't give up hope while looking for it, you'll find it, beyond a picnic table. I was SO grateful this water worked! But there was a sign that said "untreated water! unsafe to drink without filter, boiling, or treating with iodine." Luckily I brought my Life Straw with me. I was SO thirsty!

Backpack Road and beyond is such an easier hike! Since everything was so dry I was worried that Little Yosemite would be dry, too. But it wasn't! The water was pretty low, but that made for more opportunities to climb all over the rocks. I saw a frog in the water! and along Camp Ohlone Road we saw a bunch of red-headed woodpeckers. They were so cool!

If I had done this hike in March or April, I'm sure it would be my favorite hike in the Bay. But no matter the time of year, always bring plenty of water!!! And make sure everyone in your group brings plenty, as well!