Hinkley Basin Fire Road to Sand Point Overlook

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The Forest of Nisene Marks State Park

Hinkley Basin Fire Road to Sand Point Overlook is a 5.8 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Soquel, California that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 5.8 miles Elevation Gain: 1,437 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dogs on leash

hiking

mountain biking

nature trips

walking

bird watching

forest

views

wild flowers

wildlife

UPDATE (May 1, 2020): This park is temporarily closed to vehicular access, meaning there are no parking facilities and parking on roadways is prohibited to protect public health from the COVID-19 pandemic. Although this park is open to local residents, they must abide by the following guidelines: Stay Local: Walk or bike into the park. Do not drive to the park. Stay Active: Keep walking, jogging, hiking and biking. Watch for one-way trails. Stay Safer at 6 Feet: Maintain a physical distance of 6 feet or more. Gatherings, picnics and parties are not allowed. Visitors are being asked to leave if there are too many people at the park or on trails to allow for the required physical distance. Stay Clean: Be prepared. Bring soap/sanitizer and pack out all trash. Statewide, many parks and beaches are temporarily closed or have very limited access to ensure Californians are abiding and practicing physical distancing. The goals are to make sure people are safe and to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 as much as possible. To view the list of closures and what they mean to the public, please visit www.parks.ca.gov/FlattenTheCurve. NOTE: Do not enter or exit from Olive Springs Road. This is Private Property with homes. It is Posted with No Trespassing Signs. Entrance is only through the Aptos Park Entrance. Please be respectful.

hiking
private property
25 days ago

There is no way to enter this trailhead without trespassing private property. This trailhead should be removed from AllTrails.

hiking
2 months ago

NOTE there is a public access easement on this road, you enter at the left gate, the stencil saying “no trespassing” is false! Probably just some cranky neighbor. The road starts with a creek you have to ford in winter. Very beautiful lush diverse forest, gradually gets steep and less diverse once you enter Nisene Marks (but still shady).

hiking
private property
8 months ago

The entrance to the trail is gated off with signs saying no trespassing. Honestly can’t imagine why anyone would see “no trespassing” signs and still go through. Another commenter said the other entrance is through Aptos Creek Park, but we couldn’t find a park with that name anywhere near where this particular trail is. So we gave up trying.

hiking
8 months ago

3.9 miles one way, hike on is straight up, nice hike out.

hiking
10 months ago

Great hike to do, with very few people on the trail. You park at a private gate, just be sure not to block it. There are a few creek crossing in the beginning and some poison oak near the top.

hiking
private property
Fri May 24 2019

Do not enter or exit through Olive Springs Road. The gates are Posted No Trespassing. The only entrance is through the Aptos Park Entrance. Please be respectful.

hiking
off trail
private property
Tue May 21 2019

Really awesome, quiet and peaceful hike, but the trail starts on private property and crosses through private property multiple times, and im talkin creepy isolated cabin in the woods property. Lots of “no trespassers” signs, and I felt kinda weird about it out in the middle of nowhere with no reception. Also, there is a creek fording that is impassible if it has rained a lot recently. Other than that, its the fastest way to sand point, and a beautiful hike.

hiking
muddy
Sun Feb 10 2019

Did this hike in the rain and went great! Trial was muddy throughout and water was high, but still manageable. Great view from the top clearing. Would recommend

Wed Jan 02 2019

About 2 miles in there is a private residence on the right side of the trail (near the park boundary). Folks residing there fired over 500 rounds of ammunition during my hike. Felt super unsafe as I can’t say if the shooter knew there were other people nearby. Turned around and won’t be back.

hiking
Mon Oct 15 2018

Loved this little trail! Didn't do much research beyond how far of a drive it was, trail distance and elevation gain so the stream crossing and solitude was a very pleasant surprise! Also met some really nice hikers and mountain bikers who came up the other side. NOTE: there is little to no cell service here. I didn't take a screenshot of the map but fortunately my friend's phone worked. Personally the trail would have been a bit confusing for me without a map with all of the offshoots. Will definitely come back to explore some of the other joining trails!

Sun Oct 07 2018

Love it! Pup celebrated her 12th birthday up & back!

Thu Sep 20 2018

Loved this trail. Shaded, with shallow streams (in September) that you can cross by stepping on stones. I talked to the guy at the Olive Springs Quarry across Olive Springs Road from the gate to Hinckley Basin Fire Road, and he told me that even though the signs say no trespassing, you can hike and bike there, but don’t block the gate with your car.

hiking
Sat Aug 25 2018

Great hike! Shaded, longish, good incline and dog friendly! My new favorite hike

hiking
Thu Apr 12 2018

Great 3 mike shortcut to the top most view (Sand Point Overlook). It’s very uphill, and follows a fire road through some interesting undeveloped properties. It begins with a creek crossing (barefoot if it’s running strong). Don’t miss the abandoned Jeep.

Wed Dec 13 2017

The entry is a metal road gate right by the quarry that says no trespassing. A couple miles in you get to a real trail sign for destinations in nisene marks. This trail is fire road and has 4 water crossings within the first half mile. Super cool and I only saw one other person.

Tue May 23 2017

Nice short route. Only one view point with two benches. Good thing that it's all in shades

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