Long Ridge Loop

EASY 26 reviews

Long Ridge Loop is a 4.3 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near La Honda, California that features a lake and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round.

DISTANCE
4.3 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
751 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Loop

kid friendly

birding

hiking

mountain biking

nature trips

trail running

walking

forest

lake

views

wild flowers

wildlife

no dogs

This hike wanders through a little valley to the headwaters of Peters Creek and then out onto a ridge with striking views almost to the coast. As you move up towards the headwaters, the valley changes from cool and mossy to slightly drier forest, finally reaching one of the few lakes in the Santa Cruz Mountains, a man-made reservoir. The trail goes across the dam (and borders private property, please be respectful). Leaving the lake, you climb up some switchbacks eventually reaching the preserve's namesake Long Ridge with open views to the southwest, towards some of the biggest redwood parks of the Santa Cruz Mountains. Soon you reach a granite bench dedicated to Wallace Stegner, the Stanford author and conservationist who played an important role in helping save many of these lands from development. In early spring the hillsides can be covered in a profusion of wildflowers. Just after the bench, the trail forks, one fork seemingly leading along the ridgeline and the other dropping into the forest. The ridgeline trail only goes about 50 yards before running into a 'private property' sign and a fence, so down into the forest you go. From here you wind down towards your start; reaching a 4-way intersection in the middle of the forest. This route goes forward across the intersection, but you can also do a switchback heading down towards the Peters Creek Trail here. Wander through the quiet forest until a descent drops you back to Peters Creek, and a short ascent back to the noise and bustle of Highway 35.

hiking
6 days ago

hiking
16 days ago

27 days ago

This trail was awesome to hit in the morning before work! You get a solid hike in but it doesn't take very long to complete and is not challenging. Also the trail was mostly shaded which was a big plus. There is an amazing opening where you can look out over the beautiful hills to the ocean which is about halfway.

hiking
1 month ago

2 months ago

hiking
2 months ago

This open space preserve is great. Beautiful views and not crowded at all. There's one killer uphill towards the beginning, but not a big deal. I would recommend going towards the morning when it's cooler so you don't have to deal with the summer heat. Check it out!

2 months ago

3 months ago

Beautiful views of the ridge, nice easy trail. Watch out for snakes in the grass

4 months ago

hiking
4 months ago

Really nice trail. Beautiful views and streams. Pretty muddy and wet in spots but well shaded and you can see the ocean at parts. 5 year old did great. Not too much elevation change.

hiking
4 months ago

I have hiked this trail twice within a week. It is an easy loop with spectacular scenery.

4 months ago

hiking
4 months ago

hiking
6 months ago

7 months ago

7 months ago

Hike with family and friends. Nice scenery and easy hike. Recommend for a kickback day hike.

9 months ago

Saturday, August 13, 2016

mountain biking
Sunday, August 07, 2016

trail running
Sunday, August 07, 2016