San Juan Bautista De Anza Trail is a 5.3 mile out and back trail located near San Juan Bautista, California that features beautiful wild flowers. The trail is rated as moderate and primarily used for hiking, walking, and nature trips.
Nice, moderate incline hike with spectacular views. Views of the Pinnacles to the east, Fremont's Peak and the Salinas Valley to the south, and the Santa Cruz Mountains and San Juan Valley to the north are all visible from different points on the trail, which starts off as an exposed, uphill climb, but levels off around the mile and a half point with sparse but rewarding bits of shade offering some coastal oak chaparral, ferns and wildflowers to boot. The surrounding hills and canyons are covered with oak. My only complaint is the faint smell of cow manure as the trail winds through cow fields, and also the wideness and condition of the trail, which is a bit torn up from vehicles and the recent rains. I only went to the second bench which is around the 2.5 mile mark, but I would like to go back and explore further. On a late Tuesday morning I passed a group of horseback riders and three other hikers, though it was very quiet otherwise. I'm sure points past the second bench offer more solitude. Plenty of parking and a port-a-potty at the trailhead, and also some signage about the history of the Anza Expedition, which this trail is a section of. Signs instruct you to keep dogs on leash but I let my well behaved dog off around the 1 mile marker and encountered no issues.
Great trail to run. 2.5 up almost 900feet. Not too steep.
Dog and horse friendly trail. Approx 2.5 miles to the second bench at top of hill ( first bench .75 mile marker) with total 900 ft climb. Trails continues on past the 2.5 for the curious. Great trail for a quick hike. Very popular so if you want solitude go past the 2.5 marker... Everyone seems to turn around at the bench.