Dipsea, Steep Ravine, and Matt Davis Loop

MODERATE 922 reviews

Dipsea, Steep Ravine, and Matt Davis Loop is a 6.8 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Stinson Beach, California that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round.

DISTANCE
6.8 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
1,686 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Loop

birding

hiking

nature trips

trail running

walking

beach

forest

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

muddy

no dogs

Hike from the Pacific Ocean all the way up to The Muir Woods Visitor Center. There area spectacular ocean views, rushing creeks, and pretty waterfalls. Steep Ravine is a real jewel in Marin County's crown. Cutting deep into the landscape over millennia the water rushing through Webb Creek has created a spectacularly steep sided and lush canyon shaded by towering redwood trees and populated with a wide variety of local flora and fauna. The hike begins along the Dipsea Trail at Stinson Beach. It climbs gradually with many ocean views until you reach its' junction with the Steep Ravine Trail. From here it climbs 1000 ft. to Pantoll ranger station in 1.5 miles. There are two significant waterfalls along Webb Creek in Steep Ravine. The upper one is interesting because you have to climb up the waterfall via a 10 ft. high ladder. These waterfalls are best seen in the winter or early spring months, after there has been a lot of rain. Once at Pantoll, cross the highway and head back down to Stinson Beach via the Matt Davis trail. You will find more great ocean views on this trail. Many people like to do this hike in the reverse direction, going up Matt Davis trail and down Steep Ravine. But the Matt Davis trail is longer (4 miles) and it is all up hill if you go this way.

hiking
2 hours ago

Love this trail especially the Steep Ravine portion. Beautiful ravine with the added shade of our coastal Redwoods! Park free at Stinson and end your hike relaxing at the beach. Complete day!

hiking
2 days ago

From the Matt Davis which quickly opens up to beautiful, rolling hills overlooking the Pacific into switchbacking down through evergreen forests to the open coastal trail of the Dipsea to a gorgeous, shaded Redwood forest along Webb Creek on the Steep Ravine, this hike has it all.

A couple short-but-tight street walks/crossings (from Pantoll across to Matt Davis and in town to Dipsea trailhead) so beware of traffic.

We parked at the Pantoll station and hiked Steep Ravine to Dipsea. Lunch at Stinson. Back up Matt Davis. Did not care for Matt Davis. A lot of poison oak and not nearly as pretty as Steep Ravine/Dipsea. Quite the climb on a warm late afternoon as well. Good workout dripping sweat the first couple miles on Matt Davis though so...there's that. We hiked Friday, July 20th. Trails weren't terribly crowded. We passed about five or six groups and a couple of solo hikers on the way down. One runner. A few solo hikers coming down Matt Davis while we climbed up.

3 days ago

Started at 9am & finished a little passed noon, totaling 7.5 miles. Started at Dipsea & veered further by hiking the borders of the ocean coast, then crossed over to the Matt Trail. The incline at the beginning was definitely a burn, but a great workout. It was hot, but cooled down in the shaded areas on Matt Trail. Very little water in the creeks. No waterfall. There is a restroom at the parking lot between the 2 trails. Trails were very clean. Views were beautiful. Saw lots of blue dragonflies on the Matt Trail. Would love to do this hike again in the spring or after a good rain.

hiking
4 days ago

Amazing views! It took us 4 hours with 4 kids (5 years old - 10). Little dusty during August. Recommend to start with with the harder trail, the Dipsea Trail.

hiking
4 days ago

Great hike! Did it clockwise, and It was nice walking down with the view in the end. However I think I would have preferred the other direction. On the top of the open grassland take some of the smaller trails to get further up on the boulders visible from the trail. Amazing view over the beach, SF skyline and on clear days you can see the entire Bay Area!

5 days ago

One of the great California hikes. Mostly shady. Wide variety of bio communities.

hiking
10 days ago

Just as all the other reviews have said, this is a beautiful hike with a lot of diverse scenery! Whether you start with Dipsea (as we did) or with Matt Davis, the ascent is mostly in the shade, which is nice. The trailhead on the map looks like it's on the same side of Shoreline Highway as Stinson Beach, but it is actually across the street and you will see where the steps immediately start ascending (if you're starting with Dipsea Trail, that is).

16 days ago

Gorgeous hike. Took the Dipsea Trail and the Matt Davis back to be awarded with beautiful scenic views of the fog cover and ocean...

18 days ago

Great trail so beautiful the view up there .. so worth it!!!

21 days ago

Beautiful. Steep unfinished steps.

22 days ago

LOVE this trail! SO beautiful, a lot of different types of scenery. Highly recommend!

22 days ago

What a great hike. Incredibly beautiful!

26 days ago

Stunning...the shifting landscapes make this dynamic and always engaging. I started up Dispea and Steep Ravine to Pantol Station. This portion is through dense and beautiful forest. There’s a charming ladder to climb over a large boulder. From Pantol Station the Matt Davis Trail is a nice descent back to Stinson Beach. The day I was there the trail seemed to intersect where the fog hit the land to the left of me and a beautiful clear blue sky to my right. Not only one of the most beautiful sightings on a trail but one of the most beautiful things I’ve seen ever. It was fairly heavily trafficked but it was a Saturday. It’s a great hike.

hiking
27 days ago

I hiked this starting by Rocky Point on Hwy 1. Absolutely beautiful hike, I clocked it as much longer than 6.8 miles. Granted I did stop at the Stinson Beach market and got a little lost at the top of the Matt Davis trail but still ended up at about 11 miles including walking up (and back down) from Steep Ravine cabins. It was challenging for me but I would do it again in a second! Make sure to bring plenty of water, it was super hot and sunny up top. From start to finish back to Steep Ravine it took me 4 hours.

hiking
28 days ago

Beautiful.

hiking
1 month ago

My favorite hike in the Bay Area! Tho, we go the opposite direction.

hiking
1 month ago

I hiked this trail in July of 2017, and it was not very difficult for an active person. The steps going up and down were hard on my legs at times but nothing worth being sore over.

I hiked this trail in trail running shoes and packed only about 1 liter of water which was enough. We hiked down to the beach. Then, we relaxed, ate and took a nap before going back up.

I hiked this trail again in June of 2018 with my 8 year old son and mother. We got almost to the top but turned around because of the weather. It was very cloudy, misty and definitely could feel the droplets towards the top. It was such a beautiful experience going on a day it wasn’t sunny, though!

We packed light on water, about 1 liter per person and didn’t take any breaks except to drink water.

hiking
1 month ago

Gorgeous hike through the trees and grassland on a beautiful, sunny, and warm day. We started at the top, parked in the Bootjack lot (adding ~1 mile), went down Matt Davis and up Dipsea and Steep Ravine. Just an archetypal GGNRA hike, in the variety and beauty of the surroundings, level of strenuousness, and length. A wonderful day and route.

1 month ago

My favorite!!

hiking
1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

A fairly easy hike with absolutely stunning views and cool weather

hiking
1 month ago

Great loop trail, takes advantage of the well established trrail routes in the area. Recommend pants at the least, long sleeve shirt for your comfort if you need it. Beautiful views of the ocean when you come down Matt Davis trail and lots of time in the woods with the sequoias!

hiking
1 month ago

I LOVED this hike! We started at Stinson and took the Dipsea Trail (just to the south of the fire station) to Steep Ravine. We followed Steep Ravine to the Pantoll Ranger Station, joined the Matt Davis Trail and took that back to Stinson. The hike was followed by delicious tacos and beers at The Siren Cafe, right on the beach at Stinson. The trails in mid June were lush, running water, and shaded for about 3/4 of the loop. Total loop clocked at 8 miles and took 3.5 hours. I'm an avid hiker and found this hike to be strenuous enough, not too hard, but I felt like I had a great workout when I was done.

1 month ago

Great hiking trail and loop from Stinson beach and back. Great sceneries, vues, foliage. Starting on the Matt Davis trail to the Steep Ravine trail to the Dipsea trail makes for a challenging but fun hike!

hiking
1 month ago

This hike far exceeded my high expectations. I parked next to the bathroom by Stinson Beach and went up the Matt Davis Trail so I ended along the beach on Dipsea. The trail is beautiful and overgrown but not too much. Be cautious of poison oak in the first leg. It is quite the workout going up the first half but once you get to the top the rest of the hike is easy. Breathtaking and changing views throughout every inch of the hike. Ends up being closer to 8 miles but is worth every minute. If you’re doing in the summer I suggest trying this hike late afternoon and catching the end during golden hour. Magic is an understatement!

hiking
1 month ago

A really great trek to go to. It's quite a workout going uphill and a comfortable walk downhill. 7.2 miles in total. Things to remember - loads of poison oak along they way so make sure to cover yourselves completely. - The environment changes suddenly from woods to meadows to ravines so dress in layers. - We did not encounter any wildlife along this trek - Parking is available at Stinson beach. It's a good place to start and end the trek. You can use the restrooms and/or buy some food from the snack bar (they have amazing sandwiches, a perfect lunch at the summit)

hiking
2 months ago

Nice varied trail with good views but be prepared. Wore tennis shoes since we weren’t planning on hiking and was bleeding near the end. Very steep incline with lots of stairs, significant leg workout. But worth it. Good wildlife spotting — we saw a snake, some birds, a friendly vole, tons of lizards. Make sure to layer — even on a chilly day it gets very hot when you make it out of the fog and into the open fields.

2 months ago

Great hike! For me, the hike up was pretty hard. Constant climb and steeper. Awesome workout though!! We came down Matt Davis, it was so long, pretty much downhill the entire 4 miles, super easy. Beautiful views! Plan to go up Matt Davis next time.

hiking
2 months ago

Amazing trail!

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