Canopy, Dipsea and Sun Trail Loop

moderate 83 reviews
#10 of 56 trails in

Canopy, Dipsea and Sun Trail Loop is a 5 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Mill Valley, California that offers the chance to see wildlife and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, trail running, and nature trips and is accessible year-round.

Distance: 5.0 miles Elevation Gain: 1,010 feet Route Type: Loop


nature trips




no dogs

Backdoor entry to Muir Woods on an uncrowded trail where you can enjoy scenery (and a bar!) most visitors never see. The ancient California redwood trees of Muir Woods National Monument are one of several remaining groves up and down the coast that escaped the lumberjacks thanks to forward thinking preservationists. Located just North of San Francisco this is the ideal place for visitors from around the world to come and marvel at the giant redwoods (which in this park grow up to 250ft tall and 14 feet wide) but it also means the area frequently attracts large crowds, bus tours and overflowing parking lots. Our hillside loop trail offers a great way to visit Muir Woods National Monument and avoid many of the crowds, before returning along a scenic route over Mt. Tamalpais State Park that most visitors don't get to see. One additional benefit along this trail is the chance to spend a little time at the Tourist Club. In the past we've had little trouble as non-members enjoying a drink here, but here's what it says on the club's website: "The Tourist Club is a private facility for the use of its members, however the Tourist Club welcomes guests for our Festivals, held annually in May, July, and September, and occasional activities and events, which are posted on our calendar."

bridge out
1 month ago

Dipsea bridge (which is located outside of the Muir wood main entrance) was closed when we went on 1/1/20, which caused quite the detour. We ended up turning around so we weren’t able to complete the the loop. We still enjoyed a beautiful hike though!

7 months ago

Completed in early July 2019 Nice and easy trail going down.... coming up was more challenging! It was cool to find ourselves in Muir Woods without the hassle of the parking lot or reservations. Really beautiful and lots of shade. I noticed a lot of poison oak so be careful!

7 months ago

Great morning loop hike. Foggy and damp early, but warm and sunny on the final legs. Took a wrong turn about 1/2 mile from the parking lot and followed the Lost Trail down to Fern Creek Trail. Added about 1-1/2 miles to the total, but Fern Creek was flowing and sighted a few small salmon fry in the creek. Great way to visit Muir Woods without dealing with reservations and/or traffic. The climb out of Muir Woods on the Dipsea is steep and strenuous. Unfortunately, the Tourist Club was closed to guests today.

8 months ago

last one we did and made it today. bring comfort shoes for hiking

Lovely trail. Lots of people on weekend days. Passes a visitor center half way that has a lot of people.

11 months ago

washed out
Mon Feb 18 2019

Beautiful and challenging trail. Closer to 6miles. Many parts of the trail were washed out and we had to climb over some fallen trees. We saw a mountain lion! Can’t wait to do this again when the rain lightens up. Tip: after you leave Muir Woods, you have to walk to the parking lot and cross the street to get on the dipsea trail.

Tue May 15 2018

A nice descent into Muir Woods, with some truly beautiful groves that you will have all to yourself (certainly in contrast to the trails along Redwood Creek in Muir Woods). The ascent is steep and not that interesting until the views return on the Sun/Redwood Trails. And if it is open to guests, the Tourist Club is a great spot for a beer and to relax.

Sun May 13 2018

fantastic trail. not that crowded. did it counterclockwise and the last half got the heartrate up a little. perfect place

Sat May 12 2018

Wow.. Just wow

Mon Apr 16 2018

Great hike!

Sun Apr 08 2018

It’s was great hike !

Thu Jan 18 2018

Love this trail, it is a fun one with a beautiful descent into Muir woods and then back up. Great views at the top.

Sun Dec 03 2017

Great Hike- have been avoiding bc I have a love hate view on MW. Love the park - dislike the people (including someone this morning who was using their phone ... with the speaker) however I made good time and was at MW at about 8AM and very few people but picked up around 9AM. Parking was fine - easy to fine TH - trail in good condition - very peaceful. The only other draw back - some road noise the first 1.5 miles. I will go back

Mon Jul 31 2017

My favorite hike! You hike down into Muir Woods, and then up and out. The ocean trail can get a little crowded on weekends, but it's beautiful. Highly recommend!

Sat Apr 01 2017

Park across from Mt. Home Inn and go down to Muir Woods, then take the Dipsea Trail back up and then merge onto the Sun Trail. Views from the Sun Trail are spectacular. Hiking the loop took 2.5 hours.

Mon Jan 16 2017

Beautiful hike. I highly recommend. I would actually give it about a 4.5. To clarify, the Tourist Club is a group of buildings along the route and is not the part of the route itself. You will not be prevented in doing this hike.

Mon Aug 01 2016

Great way to beat the crowds not deal with the crowds at the Muir Woods main entrance. We were able to show our friends who were visiting the Bay Area the main Muir Woods grove and got a good workout also. It's ended up being a 7.5 mile loop, we probably added an extra mile by walking around in Muir Woods .

Mon Feb 16 2015

Took 4 kids on the hike: 10, 8, 5, 5 years olds. Great experience, great views. Bring layers of clothing, temperature was changing quickly between sunny and darker spots. Around lunch time sun was beaming for great panoramic views, but fog came in very quickly. Kids were complaining a little bit, but hike is not tiring. Just make sure they hame some entertainment: walkie talkies, binoculars, singing loud. We would stop every hour, overall took about 4.5 for the loop with 2.5 hours of walking.

Thu Mar 06 2014

Contrary to what this page states, the Tourist Club is always closed to non-members except for events open to guests, which are listed on their website.

Wed Mar 13 2013

Muir woods is definitely worth a visit. Don't count on the tourist club. Only open a few weekend hours 2 times a month.

Sun Nov 25 2012

Gorgeous 4.5 mile hike along trails that for the most part avoid all the hustle and bustle and the main entrance, although it goes near the visitor center if that interests you. Part of the hike is amid the redwoods and some of it is along more exposed sunny trails- best of both. It took us a little under 2.5 hours. Great way to start the day!

Sun Mar 04 2012

Awesome hike with great views.

Tue May 24 2011

It has been a while; i was only 17 when I took this trip but Muir Woods is one of the greatest places on Earth.

23 days ago

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