Dipsea, Steep Ravine, and Matt Davis Loop

moderate 1132 reviews

Dipsea, Steep Ravine, and Matt Davis Loop is a 7.8 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Stinson Beach, California that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, running, nature trips, and bird watching and is accessible year-round.

Distance: 7.8 miles Elevation Gain: 1,781 feet Route Type: Loop

hiking

nature trips

bird watching

running

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
bugs
3 hours ago

hiking
4 days ago

Such a solid hike -- mix of everything, good challenge, and all kinds of terrain. Perfect for a sunny day and end up back at Stinson to check out the beach and get some beer at the shop nearby.

hiking
muddy
rocky
5 days ago

We started the hike this morning around 9:40am from Matt Davis trailhead just before the fire station, made our way up going straight uphill to the Pantoll campground. It was strenuous uphill and ratter challenging since we started off so fast at the beginning (having a good breakfast would have helped) then made our way down to Steep Revine and Dipsea trails. My recording showed a total of 8.3 miles which we finished in a little less than 4 hours; 3hrs 40min 30sec to be exact. Was a great workout. Mostly shaded trails with some muddy parts here and there.

hiking
12 days ago

Beautiful hike! We started at Pan Toll and went counterclockwise on Matt Davis to Stinson Beach. Hung out on the beach. Climbed up Dipsea trail to Steep Ravine. Steep is definitely correct! It’s a great workout!

18 days ago

Our second time doing this hike, and we loved it even more this time. It was a clear day and we saw amazing views of downtown SF and the golden gate Bridge from the trail! Bring water, snacks and follow the trail map closely. We accidentally followed the dipsea trail instead of steep ravine and climbed up 1 mile of steps before realizing our mistake and turning back around. Good moderate hike, can be done by people who don't usually do this trail length as long as you go slow. Great for trail running!

23 days ago

Wonderful trail. The hike back up was a real workout for an average guy like me.

hiking
muddy
24 days ago

Beautiful trail! Showed up around 2pm and finished just at sunset. The ladder is real and will satisfy your fantasy hike needs

Stunning views and a great hike!

Fantastic day to hike! The trails were mostly damp , but we ran into a few pockets of muddy spots too. We arrived at 0930 and parking was already filled up in several parking lots. Too many people do this trail on the weekends. This trail is so much better on a weekday due to the high volume of crowds. The entire loop was 8 miles at 1883 ft elevation. Not recommended for a beginner hiker. Very strenuous upward climb the first 3 miles.

hiking
1 month ago

Well marked. Beautiful out and back.

Doesn’t get much better than this. You get to go through all types of landscapes.

New favorite hike. Definitely recommend. Started at the bottom near Stinson and went counter clockwise.

Gorgeous ! I recommend parking at Stinson beach and doing the loop clockwise!

hiking
1 month ago

Did the whole trail on 1/5/20, was great! Not too muddy, and the creek was beautiful.

hiking
muddy
1 month ago

This trail exceeded our expectations. We were looking for an alternative to paying the fees at Muir Woods so we picked this trail & it was free & even better! I’d recommend showing up early on a weekend & parking right before the trailhead in Stinson Beach off Willow Camp Way. There are some ‘no parking’ areas, but we lucked out going early & found a spot. Also, January was great for the cool weather & it was right after an early morning of rain so everything was green & muddy. Dipsea is more open, sunny & near the coast. Steep Ravine is shady, lush & surrounded by redwoods & ferns. Matt Davis is a little of both of those worlds. It was perfect & I’d totally hike again!

hiking
muddy
rocky
1 month ago

The most gorgeous waterfalls and foliage in January

hiking
1 month ago

Pretty trail. I started up Steep Ravine and went counterclockwise ending on Dipsea. The Steep Ravine is aptly named, but not a hard time. Pretty bridges and a ladder. There were people but not too many. Parked at White Gate on Panoramic Highway to start. Nice views of the coast as you come down Matt Davis. Took me 3 hours with a break for snacks & pics every now and again.

Beautiful hike with varied terrain. I would highly recommend going clockwise, starting at Steep Ravine/Dipsea and ending with Matt Davis Trail. You hike down into an enchanted forest and pop out in the town of Stinson Beach, walk along a road briefly and turn right at the firehouse then hike my Matt Davis. It is moderately steep but evens out eventually. You get great views of the ocean and San Francisco off in the distance. Cash only parking at Pantoll Campground.

hiking
2 months ago

The most beautiful trail . Lost of people . Was amazing .

hiking
2 months ago

Beautiful Trail, waterfalls, bridges, a ladder. Loved it.

An enriching hike with an incredibly beautiful waterfalls that you follow the entire hike. The trail was well maintained and definitely not a easy hike, 3 miles of moderate to strenuous incline, then 4 miles down. We did it counterclockwise as another reviewer mentioned which I’m glad we did because as you hike up the mountain you will hike 3 miles (the hardest part of this hike) along a breathtaking and stunning waterfalls. The trail switchbacked often with lots of bridges that crossed over the falls. Pictures definitely do not give justice to the beauty and tranquility of this trail. Once at the top, we stopped at Mt Tampalasis state park and used clean flushing restrooms that had soap and water; then found a picnic table and had our packed lunch. The park was lovely with lots of picnic tables and tall redwood trees with plenty of shade. Coming down the mountain was just as beautiful as you see panoramic views of the ocean and beyond in many directions. Probably the only con to this trail was the amount of people that flocked to the trail today. Probably a good idea to hit the trails as early as possible to avoid the later crowds in my opinion. However, we still enjoyed talking to many nice folks just the same. This was an incredibly adventurous hike and the beauty of the forest just kept giving and giving. Definitely one of my favorite hikes now.

So beautiful! In the Top 3 hikes I’ve done in the Bay Area

hiking
2 months ago

We hiked the trail going counterclockwise (as many suggested) on Christmas morning and the trail was quiet except for a few coyote and handful of people. It was beautiful. The range of scenery from forest to grasses was beautiful. Dense Clouds and mist to sun shining on the water when the ocean was in view. The temperature changes made layering important. The trail is well maintained and this was a perfect Christmas hike of 5 hours, 9 miles (we veered off from the trail a bit).

hiking
2 months ago

One of my favorite Bay Area hikes! Recommend starting counterclockwise from Stinson as doing so gives you a nice approaching view of the many waterfalls along the Steep Ravine Trail. You will also then have many food options in Stinson Beach when you finish. The hike up is fairly gradual at first with lots of switchbacks a mile or so in. There is also one 10” ladder - there may be a detour around the ladder but we didn’t take it. Strava recorded our hike at 6.8 miles so not sure why this is listed at 7.8. Maybe the 7.8 is if you take the Dipsea Trail the whole way and not Steep Ravine?

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