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Rock City to the Summit of Mount Diablo

HARD 192 reviews
#6 of 74 trails in

Rock City to the Summit of Mount Diablo is a 7.6 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Danville, California that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round.

Distance: 7.6 miles Elevation Gain: 2,201 feet Route Type: Out & Back

camping

hiking

nature trips

rock climbing

bird watching

running

forest

views

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

no shade

no dogs

From Rock City hike up to the summit. This trial offers scenic views and breathtaking climbs. Although steep in sections, it is a great hike. This park is one of the ecological treasures of the San Francisco Bay Area. Many visitors to Mount Diablo head straight for the summit to enjoy the famous view. Summer days are sometimes hazy, and the best viewing is often on the day after a winter storm. Then, you can look to the west, beyond the Golden Gate Bridge, to the Farallon Islands; southeast to the James Lick Observatory on Mount Hamilton at 4,213 feet elevation; south to Mount Loma Prieta in the Santa Cruz Mountains at 3,791 feet elevation, north to Mount Saint Helena in the Coast Range at 4,344 feet elevation, and still farther north to Mount Lassen in the Cascades at 10,466 feet. North and east of Mount Diablo the San Joaquin and Sacramento Rivers converge to form the twisting waterways of the Delta. To the east beyond Califomia's great central valley, the crest of the Sierra Nevada seems to float in space.

hiking
rocky
7 days ago

hiking
17 days ago

Weekday hike. Never saw another hiker on the trail going up or down. Good workout but the mountain is really best for cyclists.

hiking
no shade
22 days ago

hiking
muddy
no shade
1 month ago

hiking
no shade
rocky
1 month ago

Started at 8:15 and ended at 12:30 with a bit of a rest at the top. Good trail if you want a workout and know what to expect from Mt. Diablo. The first bit of the trail is deceivingly easy but don’t let it fool you. Once you cross the road for the first time it’s a pretty consistent uphill. Definitely be careful crossing the roads, the bikers fly down the hill, as they should. Still some wild flowers at the moment. Overall a good one for a workout but not one that’s secluded or super pretty.

hiking
1 month ago

Tough hike if not in shape. Not much shade except in a few places. Nice views, but nothing spectacular in the terrain. Probably nicest in the Spring with the flowers. I preferred the summit trails out of Clayton. Rock City was a disgrace with all the idiots marking the area up with graffiti.

hiking
2 months ago

An awesome hike! Took us longer than expected and we drank a lot of water along the way. Beautiful views and sightings of deer and bucks, a great horned owl, quail, rabbits, a coyote, doves, and a woodpecker. Poles were of great help.

hiking
no shade
2 months ago

hiking
bugs
no shade
rocky
2 months ago

hiking
2 months ago

Challenging hike, with great views!

3 months ago

Great hike, pretty tough. Bring water cause the water resupply half way up tastes odd. Good water at the top however. We did run across a rattle snake chilling on the trail and had to figure out how to go around it.

hiking
bugs
rocky
4 months ago

hiking
5 months ago

I freakin’ hate trails like this. This area is better for casual hikers, cyclists, campers and tourists. Trails aren’t clearly marked. Even with the all trails app, there are so many offshoots from people going off trail over the years, it’s hard to follow. Been hiking for years and this is the first time I’ve slipped (and broke my 100$ sunglasses). Be careful! Some of the moss growing on rocks that cover the trail are quite slippery. It’s too close to civilization for my taste and the campers are a bit rude and noisy as heck. When I hike, I want to get away, including cell service. There’s a big, fat ugly cell tower atop the mountain. I wanted to use this mountain as a training peak, but I guess I’m gonna have to find another spot. Positive is that there were a few really nice views.

hiking
5 months ago

Wow my legs are on fire I am 41 and 350lbs I took my 7 year old son, brother in law and 12y nephew. It took us 6 hours but we stopped very often to rest my legs and take pictures. We also stopped at every picnic area and sat at the summit for about an hour. Up hill the majority of the time the views are breathtaking . I tried mission peak last year but didn’t get to the top but I was 425lbs I wanna do mission peak again. This trail was so challenging but so beautiful and worth every second.

hiking
6 months ago

It was such wonderful hike . The views were breathtaking. My friend and I started around 730isham and went to the summit and down by 1130am . Must do!!!!

hiking
8 months ago

Did this hike New Year's Day. 45° with windchill, a little too crowded for my tastes, but worth the struggle! 2.5 hours on the ascent; an hour and a half coming down. I suggest starting as early as possible. The crowds my partner and I encountered were probably due to our late morning start. Plenty of bathrooms along the route, but be aware that the summit restrooms may be out of order or locked. Lower summit has picnic tables and restrooms. Next time I will definitely stop there for a break and snacks.

8 months ago

Great hike. If there are better views please tell me where!

hiking
8 months ago

Got here early last Sunday and it was a quiet hike up with lots of bird song. i loved the views near the top but this is more of a fire road and not a lot of diversity of terrain. Felt accomplished to the to the top in 2 hours and down in am hour and a half. I’d do it again but prefer the Mitchell Canyon ascent for variety.

hiking
8 months ago

Almost constant elevation gain at a 20-30 degree incline. Beautiful scenery and five posts along the way showing you what periods the rocks are from which is pretty cool and a good reason to stop. Saw hawks, deer, and plenty of little birds along the way. One bathroom up midway and a few on the summit. Worth it. On a clear day you can supposedly see more land around you than any other point in the continental 48 states. $10 state park fee to drive up to Rock City.

hiking
8 months ago

Got to the South Gate at 8:00am (there is a self check in just past the gate if the guard is not on time, but the guard showed up promptly at 8am) parked at Rock City, and had the entire mountain to myself. Did not see one hiker on the way up. The signs are worth stopping and reading, great geology lesson. When you get to the summit go to the far end (away from the tower) and there is a little trail that gives you a great view of the city on a clear day. Walk the trail around the summit, great views. Took me a little less then 3 hrs, but it's not a race, enjoy the views and climb a few rocks along the way!

hiking
9 months ago

Great hike, was able to complete in 3 hours. Pretty challenging climb, and rewarded with gorgeous views of the area. Finding the start of the trail was a bit tough since there isn’t any service at the campground where I parked, but once on the trail the markings were easy to follow. I absolutely encourage anyone looking for a tough 8 mile hike to try this out!

Friday, July 27, 2018

Pretty chill hike, pack water if it’s summer bc it can get hella hot

Saturday, July 07, 2018

Great trail on the mountain I lived in the shadow of for 25 yrs. Several others that are better but still memorable. Best done in the spring ...

hiking
Friday, June 29, 2018

I lived in the bay area for over 10 years growing up, with Mt Diablo always looming over me, reminding me how small I truly am in this world. After moving away, i had to go back to conquer this beast, and she was well worth the trip! Stunning views, changing climates, the day I chose was misting for a good half of the hike, and the rest was up in the clouds above the rest of the earth. Unfortunately, there was a rather large parking lot greeting me at the top, but nothing could shake the accomplished feeling of defeating Mt Diablo. Onto the next challenge!

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