Mission Peak Loop from Stanford Avenue Staging Area

HARD 1,124 reviews

Mission Peak Loop from Stanford Avenue Staging Area is a 6 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Warm Springs District, California that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs and horses are also able to use this trail.

DISTANCE
6.0 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
2004 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Loop

dog friendly

backpacking

birding

camping

fishing

hiking

horseback riding

mountain biking

nature trips

trail running

walking

views

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

NOTE FROM THE EAST BAY REGIONAL PARK DISTRICT: THERE IS VERY LIMITED PARKING AT STANFORD AVENUE STAGING AREA. IT IS BEST TO PARK AT OHLONE COLLEGE TO ACCESS MISSION PEAK: 43600 MISSION BLVD TO ANZA PINE ROAD. Enjoy the spectacular views of the South bay as you climb up to Mission Peak. Although steep, the views of the Bay Area are very rewarding. On a clear day hikers can see the skylines of Oakland, San Francisco and San Jose. This is a moderate to strenuous trail with a constant uphill climb until you reach the summit. The trail is a well maintained gravel base until the last half mile. From this point the trail is hard pack dirt and rocky. Difficulty would definitely increase during the rainy season. The Stanford Avenue staging area is also the western access to the Ohlone Wilderness Trail, a 29-mile hiking and riding trail through some of southern Alameda County's most beautiful wilderness, and provides access to Mission Peak's 2,999 acres. Ensure that you have plenty of water before embarking on this hike, as there are very few spots to locate shade. The trail may be shared with equestrians, and dogs are allowed. There is no fee for parking, however on a busy day you may be required to park a little west, on one of the side streets. Dogs are allowed on leash in developed areas/under voice command in undeveloped areas of the park.

hiking
14 days ago

Great challenging hike with zero aesthetically pleasing vegetation. View at the top is alright with notable views of Mt Diablo, and the south part of the bay. For an added challenge, take the trail to the right (in the beginning) and take Horse's Haven. I've met people that take this near vertical climb with 50lb bags to prepare for Half-dome. Parking sucks - I used to go three days out of the week. Now, I don't bother anymore with all the people and the line to take a picture of the pole. IT'S ONLY A POLE. Hiking times - expect 3 hours for up and down hiking. For more experienced hikers, you should be able to finish in a less than two hours if you don't spend too much time at the top.

hiking
15 days ago

Good views

25 days ago

One of the most unique trails I've ever been on in the bay area!

1 month ago

Too crowded. Too exposed in summer and fall.

hiking
1 month ago

Pros: great workout and great views at the top.
Cons: parking is the worst and if you enjoy solitude in nature, any other option is better considering this is one of the most popular hikes in the Bay Area.

hiking
1 month ago

Hiked up Mission Peak on a Wednesday morning. Stanford lot was full by 9:30AM, so we parked in the residential neighborhood (FYI signs posted say no parking Saturdays, Sundays and on holidays).

When the trail forked, we took the left route since that's what most of the people were taking. With two kids and a small dog, it took us 4 hours round trip (3 hrs uphill, 1 hr downhill). We stopped at the big boulders at the peak since the kids were exhausted and it started to rain. Will have to take that scenic selfie shot some other time. Had to carry dog on the way back since his paws were getting packed on with mud.

Since our pace was so slow, it was very doable. Senior citizens were passing us up and some even cheered on my kids, which I appreciated. I recommend dressing in layers because we were dripping in sweat the first hour but were freezing cold by the time we reached the peak. Our glutes hurt the next day, so mission accomplished :)

hiking
1 month ago

Such an amazing trail! Definitely not for the beginners in hiking due to the extreme elevation but still amazing once you reach the top.

1 month ago

Good workout

Hiking here is awesome to get proper workouts for your leg. Try this hiking spot

hiking
1 month ago

Great uphill workout with beautiful views. Good go-to hike on a cooler day.

hiking
1 month ago

Not too hard, not too easy, perfect short workout for them legs. About 1.5 hrs to top with breaks, and an easy 1 hr to the bottom. Hardest part is parking during weekends. Stay away from the cows, had one charging at me for no reason.

hiking
1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

Great hike and great views!!! Trail is a little crowded but if you have a chance to do a sunrise hike or go on a weekday morning it’s ideal :)

hiking
1 month ago

One strenuous hike

hiking
2 months ago

Beautiful views throughout, wide dirt/gravel trail, no tree cover so your experience will depend on weather. My mom and I picked a clear Saturday afternoon in mid-December, 60°F. We faced some pretty high winds: 25mph hiking up, felt like double that on the peak. The trail was only lightly trafficked during our hike, probably because of the high winds and later time. We parked at the staging area and hiked the same half of the loop (6 miles RT, 2000ft elevation gain) going up and down. We took the clockwise leg of the loop. Total trip was 2.5 hours; 1.5 hours going up, 1 hour going down, at a steady pace. We started at 2:30pm, made it to the top by 4, chilled at the peak for a bit, and were down by 5:15pm. With our conditions, I'd rate this hike a moderate.

The workout and view deserve 5 stars, but I'm knocking one down because I felt most of the hike was very tedious. I usually go for mixed terrain, narrow footpath or forest trail type of hikes, with lots of alternating uphill and downhill. Corduroy Hills in Las Trampas is a local fav. This was a steady uphill, and while the view was beautiful, the hike itself didn't feel very rewarding until we reached the top. Conversely, the last quarter mile or so was rather thrilling; a short but very steep climb, some navigating around rocks and loose gravel, precarious with the very high winds. We were treated to a fun surprise at the top--someone(s) had hauled up a xmas tree and attached it to the marker! (See pics attached) We caught the sunset on the way down.

Bring plenty of water (1L per person), the entire trail is uphill at a pretty steep incline. I'd expect it to be pretty rough during the summer. Bring a hat as there is no shade, and shoes with good traction--there's a lot of loose gravel at the top, and going down is a slippery at times. Worth checking out; the experience is a bit unique from other trails I've hiked in the Bay.

hiking
2 months ago

got sweaty, but feeling great !!!

2 months ago

pretty good trail, especially for a nice workout. It can get really hot during the noon.

2 months ago

Tough ascent, no trees , open to all the elements. I like more woods.

hiking
3 months ago

i love hiking this trail. Along the way, i stop by to look and take pictures of nature. i will gladly recommend this to anyone. Make sure you have plenty of water and a light snack like a banana or an energy bar to sanck on the top of the peak, just enjoying the view and taking in the best of nature!!

3 months ago

Damn so cool

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