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Montara Mountain Trail

MODERATE 460 reviews

Montara Mountain Trail is a 6.4 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Pacifica, California that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Horses are also able to use this trail.

Distance: 6.4 miles Elevation Gain: 1,725 feet Route Type: Loop

hiking

horseback riding

nature trips

bird watching

running

forest

views

wild flowers

rocky

no dogs

hiking
9 days ago

This was a fairly challenging trail. The trail opens up and is in direct sunlight on a dirt road for the last mile going up to the peak, however we went on a clear day and the views were beautiful. Well worth it.

hiking
20 days ago

Enjoyed this trail so much - the switchbacks on the first 1.5 miles are well graded and I like when I don’t have to watch my step so I can watch the birds and views. Lots of variety and of course great views! As for parking, it is a $6 self register at San Pedro Valley park ( if no ranger) but I didn’t have cash so parked in the neighborhood adding just a bit more walking to the hike. I would like to Come back when the falls are running ( nothing today) and the wildflowers are blooming!

hiking
1 month ago

If you go late in the afternoon, say 2pm, you can avoid the worst of the sun and the fog will have burned off - so you get the spectacular views as promised!

hiking
2 months ago

Ok since no one discussed it so far .. you do have to put to park inside here which I totally get is for upkeep however if you come not ready to do so or feel like it you can park in the neighborhood and have a short walk in keep in mind all gates close at 7. Once you get inside you will see visitor center on the left a pay booth on the right . I started counter clockwise and took right at pay booth and a left where it says ranger resident which is the start of the trail however you can go straight and start counter clockwise by the bathrooms and picnic area . If you look at map you will see this is a combo between loop and in and out . The actual loop part is easy/mod and mostly shaded once you get to the straight section it gets moderate and little more narrow . I didn’t go all the way to north peak since I’ve done that trail before and did about 5.9 without that tiny lady bit .

hiking
rocky
3 months ago

hiking
rocky
3 months ago

hiking
rocky
3 months ago

hiking
3 months ago

Great medium-difficulty trail. Once we passed the overlook, the fog blocked any potential views of the bay. Warning: extremely windy near the peak. Bring a beanie! Wonderful trail.

hiking
3 months ago

Cold and windy on top but well worth it.

hiking
3 months ago

Didn’t finish it all, too open and hot after the loop. Trail is well maintained and shady during loop though

hiking
bugs
rocky
4 months ago

hiking
rocky
5 months ago

hiking
6 months ago

Steady up and steady down. On a hot day you can see the entire Bay Area. On a hot day you can also get a sunburn. Note that there isn’t anywhere to sit at the top and rest really. A few benches along the way with great views however.

hiking
6 months ago

Specifically chose one of hottest days of year to do this hike so there would be no fog. #47 in Jane Huber's book. At times I could see the following - Mt Diablo, sutro tower, golden gate bridge, Mt Tam and the farallones. Pretty impressive. steady but relatively easy climb. Views of Bay, half moon bay, and south bay at top. noise from SFO a constant reminder that you aren't far from civilization. wind a reminder that you aren't that big. thumbs up.

hiking
muddy
rocky
8 months ago

hiking
8 months ago

Solid 4/5 Intermediate. Steady ascent with decent views throughout. As some have mentioned the view at the peak isn’t spectacular, but still pretty good. Going to use it as a timed ascent and see if I can get it under 45min, but for the first time out with a couple quick breaks it took 1h8m to get to the top.

hiking
muddy
8 months ago

Had some beautiful views along the way of Pacifica and San Francisco, and then the Bay at the very top. There are a lot of places along the way, some with benches, to sit and admire the views or eat lunch. The part of the trail through the eucalyptus trees is amazing, especially when you can see them catch the light. I wouldn't call this trail a hard hike really. Just a little slippery and muddy after the rain.

hiking
muddy
rocky
8 months ago

hiking
8 months ago

Absolutely beautiful trail. Not sure why it has a hard level labor only one section toward the top really got your heart pumping. Views were beautiful. Very quite minus the amazing sounds of nature. I’d highly recommend this hike. I most definitely will do it again!

hiking
rocky
8 months ago

9 months ago

Montara Mountain is a biological treasure. It's a challenging climb but it's rewarded with wondrous, glorious vistas. The Trail connects with the North Peak Access Road, the route to the Summit. Find out more at hikingthegoldenstate.com.

hiking
10 months ago

Good trail, some very pretty views. First mile and a half is great. After that for .75-1 mile the trail is quite rocky with many loose rocks. You definitely have to watch your step. It gets better again after that. I recommend the loop so that you get a different view for part of the hike on the way down. I would say first 1.5-2 miles up is intermediate, last part is more difficult.

hiking
10 months ago

Parked on a nearby residential street at 2:30pm since the paid parking lot gate closes at 5pm. Only saw a few other people throughout the hike. Excellent views of the ocean and San Francisco in the distance. (If you know the city, it’s fun to point out the landmarks, including the Golden Gate Bridge, and neighborhoods.) Definitely a moderate, well maintained trail that I would recommend to others looking for a 2-3 hour hike.

muddy
10 months ago

Trail length overall was 8 miles long, with occasional shade and varying wind, depending on side of the mountain. The views up top were worth it, though I wouldn't rate it as "hard" as it was a smooth, easy to follow trail. At most, this should be rated as "medium".

running
Sat Nov 03 2018

Lots of exposure on a sunny day, thankfully brought hat and sunblock! Views nice, but trail uphill a little monotonous.

hiking
Sat Oct 06 2018

Scenery: 3 Views: 4.5 Difficulty: 3.5 Crowds: 3 Shade: 2 My 1-5 Rating Scale Comparisons for above: 5 for Scenery; Mcway Falls Julia Pfeiffer Burns SP 4.5 for Scenery: Berry Creek Falls Big Basin State Park 4 for Scenery: Steep Ravine Trail 5 for Views: Nimitz Trail Tilden Park 5 for Views: Ridge Trail San Bruno Mtn Park 4.5 for Views Montara Mtn Summit San Pedro County Park 4 for Views Rancho Canada Del Oro Bald Peaks trail 5 for Difficulty: Junipero Serra Peak 4 for Difficulty: Mount El Sombroso Loop Trail

Sat Sep 15 2018

My favorite trail in the peninsula. Great climb and fantastic 360 views from the top. Just make sure it’s clear out on the coast — very easy for the top of the mountain to be in the clouds.

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