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Skyline to the Sea and Meteor Trail Loop

MODERATE 161 reviews

Skyline to the Sea and Meteor Trail Loop is a 4.7 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Boulder Creek, California that features a river and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round.

Distance: 4.7 miles Elevation Gain: 879 feet Route Type: Loop

kid friendly


nature trips


bird watching






no dogs

Please note as of September 2019, approximately 1 mile of the Skyline to Sea Trail is closed south of Park Headquarters from the Hihn Hammond Connector Trail to the Sunset Connector Trail due to storm damage. There are detours in place. Meteor Trail is a great trail to wander among the giants at Big Basin Redwoods State Park without the crowds on the more popular trails. The Meteor Trail tracks Rodgers Creek up to Middle Ridge Road. In winter and early spring the creek burbles to life, making this one of the best riparian hikes at Big Basin. And on clear days, Ocean View Summit from Middle Ridge Road offers an expansive view all the way to the Pacific Ocean. One stop along the way -- Maddock Cabin Site -- offers an intriguing window on the lives of settlers who eked out a rough existence among the redwoods. The matriarch of the Maddock clan had two simple wishes for her children: that they get a good education and avoid being eaten by grizzly bears. The cabin's long gone but interpretive panels tell the Maddock family's story. At six miles, with a healthy climb to Middle Ridge, it's a nice workout without being especially strenuous.

Awesome relaxing hike, enough climbing to keep you moving!

Beautiful trail, only saw a small handful of other groups. A couple of closures on the way, but nothing too derailing.

1 month ago

Great views of the redwoods as we started at the trailhead. Very shaded throughout the trail until you reach higher elevation. Its says the trail is 4 miles, however it was probably more like 7 miles round trip. There were a lot of butterflies along the trail and once you reach the summit the view however to the ocean was not visible. That was a little disappointing. Overall we enjoyed the hike.

Hiked from Big Basin State Part parking lot to Waddle beach. Nice hike. Google map says 9 miles but it’s 11.1miles. All shaded until the last 0.75 miles.

Don trail section to falls closed.

3 months ago

Such a cathartic trail. We were there on a Thursday in June, expecting tons of people, but passed only three other small parties outside a quarter mile of either end of the trailhead. Most folks tend to gravitate toward the falls which is great for those who want to take in the forest for the trees

4 months ago

Nice hike not too hard

5 months ago

Really nice, mostly shaded trail that's not too tough and well kept. There's no big view though due to the forest. There was also a lot of water in the streams, but I'm guessing that dries up later in the summer. I went on a sunny Saturday in mid-May yet, for some reason, the trail was almost empty. I was expecting it to be really crowded as this park is typically very popular.

8 months ago

Fun trail. Set out at 8:30am on Sunday. Hardly saw another sole until we were finishing up. Got to see lots of redwoods, which was cool being from MD. Decent elevation change enough to feel like you went on a hike but nothing too strenuous. Good for the six year old that was with us and the 55 year old who had never went on a hike before (although we had to take it a little slow for her). It was a great time.

10 months ago

Got there on Sunday, was not crowded at all. Gradual elevation may make you catch your breath. Overall a nice trail for getaway.

Sunday, October 14, 2018

Beautiful morning hike. Definitely suggest going clockwise.

Monday, September 03, 2018

Get there early! I went on a holiday weekend and didn’t arrive until 1 pm, parking was full. Ended up being able to pay for a spot at a camping site thanks to the good graces of some campers but otherwise would’ve missed out on the park. This hike is nice trip through the redwoods with a rewarding desert like summit. Nice workout at a quick pace but not super challenging. Took me 2 hours.

Saturday, July 21, 2018

Hard but great!

Monday, July 16, 2018

MOSQUITO CITY! Be prepared! Arrived 8:45a on a Sunday. Plenty of parking, but lots of people milling around. Once I got on the trail, only encountered a few groups, mostly near the trailhead. Was glad I did the loop clockwise, so I was going downhill on Meteor trail, which was by far the prettiest part of the hike. It’s a narrow ravine full of ferns and a few Redwood groves. Kind of a fairyland, made more magical by the fact that I was all alone there. Except for the mosquitos. The rest of the hike was pleasant.

Wednesday, July 04, 2018

Great hike through some beautiful old growth redwood forest with some mixed chaparral as well. A little longer than advertised—I measured it on my GPS at 5.5 mi.

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Nice hike. Went from East to West so uphill was more intense, but the path is nice and the view from the top is brilliant. A camera doesn't do the redwoods along the way justice.

Sunday, February 18, 2018

Really Nice hike - as always long and winding road to get there. Plenty of parking if you get there early (8am). Didn't see anyone the Skyline to the Sea trail & very peaceful. I went past meteor to add some miles. Middle ridge was a little disappointing - little busier and not much to see. Trail in good condition

Tuesday, February 06, 2018

Beautiful shady trail with great views of redwoods

Sunday, February 04, 2018

Not too steep, tranquil, narrow road, connected to nice Middle Ridge Road

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Fun trail with steep incline in forest of red woods. The entire trail is shaded

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Absolutely beautiful hike. Definitely recommend taking Dool to Middle Ridge and coming back down the Meteor Trail. The way down is incredibly nice. Lots of banana slugs!

Saturday, November 04, 2017

Seriously the best trail I have ever been to. Took Skyline-to-Sea, Dool, Middle Ridge (couldn't find the ocean summit), Meteor trail, then went up to Slippery Rock, down to Sempervirens falls, then took the Sequoia trail back to the parking lot. A hike to remember!

Friday, October 27, 2017

Nice trail, specially if you start on the right side.

Friday, October 13, 2017

It's a good hiking trail. Those who love the forest will appreciate and enjoy it beauty, warmth and appeals. The map issued by the park is relatively useless but trail signs are more helpful is directions. I enjoyed my hike there...

Monday, September 04, 2017

Fantastic hike. Reasonable climb and descent. Tip from ranger was to take Dool trail up and Middle ridge and Meteor down, and I think it was a good idea. The meteor section is a beautiful explosion green from all manner of plants, take your time and enjoy it.

Sunday, September 03, 2017

This is the trail to take. Start at the park head quarters and take the Skyline to the Sea Trail. Then take Dool Trail to Middle Ridge. Along Middle Ridge you can take a side trail to Ocean Summit View, great in a clear day. From Middle Ridge you will hook into Meteor Trail which hooks into North Escape making for a spectacular loop. The redwoods will not disappoint.

Monday, August 21, 2017

good hike. start at dawn. the coastal fog can set a real enchantment.

Sunday, August 06, 2017

I took a longer route, I think. Coming from Indiana, the Redwoods were awesome. Nice hike, there were only a couple small up hills that I'm guessing why this trail is rated moderate.

Saturday, August 05, 2017

We started on the Sequoia Trail from the headquarters. They have Food and a gift shop the rangers helped us pick our Trail. I highly recommend coming here you are in a fairytale. It's so beautiful it doesn't seem real. We saw a waterfall and also had a wonderful time.

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