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Canyon and Pony Gate Trail Loop

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Sugarloaf Ridge State Park

Canyon and Pony Gate Trail Loop is a 2.1 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Kenwood, California that features a waterfall and is good for all skill levels. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, and running and is accessible year-round.

Distance: 2.1 miles Elevation Gain: 652 feet Route Type: Loop

kid friendly

hiking

walking

running

forest

river

views

waterfall

rocky

no dogs

this place is okay but after a while you're not around water you go up the hill to me it was not very attractive if you have issues with nice hips or other things do not suggest it like I said beginning of the trail is lovely but after that it gets week and ugly

We followed the trail map on Alltrails and it took us 3 miles! Since we had kids with us (ages 3, 5, 7, 8) it would have been nice to expect the longer distance! But everyone managed and we finished in just under 3 hours. It was challenging for the kids but doable! We went in June and the waterfall wasn’t “falling” but there is a nice stream at multiple parts of the hike. Mostly shaded hike.

hiking
29 days ago

Would classify this as moderate especially if you do the entire 2.1mi loop with kids. Worth it though. Great hike with stopping places and vistas. Saw some deer, lizards, and a couple of light waterfalls/brooks.

hiking
bugs
fee
1 month ago

Great little 10 minute hike. Parked before the park entrance, and took the short trail. Ran right into the waterfall area. Not much of a waterfall but the water was great. We started to head up the loop but too much incline. If you want to do the loop start at the top because it is much easier.

hiking
1 month ago

Loved this trail. It a was a great short hike. The waterfall was flowing but not gushing. We started with this trail and looped up the the bald mountain trail. Some people but not too many. We had to wear our masks occasionally.

Great hike with 5 kids 3-10 years

hiking
5 months ago

Great trail for a family hike. Kids loved the waterfall and searching for tracks and scat up on the hill. Definitely 4-5 year old friendly.

hiking
6 months ago

Stunning!!! This was such a beautiful hike with a beautiful waterfall at the end. The trail was mostly in the shade in the woods. It had different kinds of terrain mixed with wooden steps and hills so it was a great workout!! We ended up taking the Stern/Bald Mountain trail back so we could get in more elevation and we ended up with 4 miles and a 1120 ft elevation gain. Will definitely do this again!!!

Great for a short hike with some elevation. We extended it by adding Stearn trail on our way back to the car. We parked up by the observatory which also added to the distance. The trails have recently been worked on and were in very good condition. We were surprised that there was very little mud to navigate around. The trail markers look “newish” but don’t look like they’re permanent. Overall, it’s a nice short hike and we saw lots of families enjoying it.

hiking
6 months ago

Trails in good shape. Beautiful weather for a hike. Waterfalls are running.

hiking
6 months ago

Beautiful hike, took Pony Gate down and Canyon back up. Going up was steep, maybe a little more than 'easy', but not very long. The falls were lovely.

hiking
10 months ago

It's a short loop that takes you through a variety of lovely habitats. You'll pass a creek and then another creek that stems from a waterfall (visit the waterfall). Nice hike that isn't too strenuous.

hiking
11 months ago

I wouldn't call this an easy trial. It was extremely steep going down to the waterfall. Coming back up it wasn't quite as bad but when you get over to the pony trail it is all uphill for 80% of the walk. A good deal of it was in the sun as well. It was still beautiful but my 6-year-old kept saying her legs were so tired and my boyfriend and I were tired too. I won't be doing this whole loop again. I will just take the canyon trail down to the waterfall. There are a couple decent looking trails that shoot off to the left on your way down that also head towards the water.

recorded Recording - Jul 07, 03:12 PM

hiking
Sun Jul 07 2019

Short hike, but very nice! I started and finished in the parking lot past the visitors center. Good for kids, but strenuous enough to get the adults breathing heavy. Decent inclines and declines. Waterfall is still flowing today. So many butterflies too! Lots of shade, but do bring a hat for the less shady parts. Lots of good photo ops.

hiking
bugs
muddy
rocky
Tue May 28 2019

Short hike with a gorgeous waterfall!!

hiking
Sat May 04 2019

Great hike. Lots of butterflies and very green

hiking
Wed May 01 2019

My son and I visited this for the first time and loved it! Just so peaceful and pretty! Loved the waterfalls and rushing water of the creek:) enjoyed some entertaining squirrels too! (Digging for acorns) We sat down at a picnic table and enjoyed our sandwiches and drinks after the hike! Wanna go back soon and explore some more.

Beautiful trail with moderate amount of tree cover. There are clear signs for the waterfall trail.

hiking
Mon Apr 01 2019

Loved it! The waterfall and streams are incredible right now. A little elevation going up Pony, otherwise an easy hike even for beginners.

Tue Mar 19 2019

beautiful hike down to the waterfall. we didnt take the trail across the road but instead took the road up and back into the main entrance. i found it very challenging going back up as it is a long walk up a fairly steep climb. but, i made it!!! and i did enjoy it, after it was done. such a beautiful park!

hiking
Wed Jan 09 2019

Nice pleasant pretty hike.

hiking
Sat Apr 21 2018

As a beginner hiker, the ascent was challenging (many steep stairs) but manageable and the descent was much easier! Waterfalls were really cool and we saw deer as we hiked :)

hiking
Fri Mar 23 2018

The lower Pony trails entrance is still closed from the wildfires, so we just ended up doing a down and back from the upper canyon trail head. The waterfall is epic after a good rain!

Sun Jul 02 2017

Not much of a hike and the waterfall wasn't too full because of the heat In summer. But still fun because it's nature. If you want a real hike with a reward so good mountain which is a couple minutes away

running
Thu Jun 01 2017

You really only need to go a quarter mile off the main road to see the waterfall.

hiking
Sat Apr 01 2017

Great hike! Going up Ridge Trail was a little tedious if you're not in good shape, but it's a beautiful trail nonetheless

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