Seaview and Big Springs Trails Loop

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Tilden Regional Park

Seaview and Big Springs Trails Loop is a 4.3 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Berkeley, California that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs and horses are also able to use this trail.

Length4.3 miElevation gain984 ftRoute typeLoop
dog friendlyKid friendlyHikingHorseback ridingMountain bikingNature tripsWalkingBird watchingrunningForestViewsWildflowers
Waypoints (9)
Facilities
Tips
1
Quarry Trailhead and Elevation Profile
The Quarry trailhead parking lot has space for about 10-20 vehicles, and includes a small grassy picnic area. It is located near a bend in Wildcat Canyon Road in Tilden Park as you arrive from the west on the road towards Inspiration Point.
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2
Big Springs Trail bay view
From the Quarry picnic area parking lot, begin the trail on the right side of the picnic area. At the first junction, continue onto Quarry Trail, bearing right along a gentle uphill slope. Continue up through the grassy hillside along Quarry Trail, to a four way junction with Big Springs Trail. Here you traverse onto Big Springs Trail, bearing upward and to your right, continuing along in the same general direction. After a short climb, you reach a trail leveling. At this POI, the San Francisco Bay is showing behind you as you continue along. Big Springs trail then ascends a bit more. After this, the trail descends gradually downhill, mostly through a mix of pine trees and evergreens. Pass a Eucalyptus tree grove as you continue down. The trail merges again with Quarry trail near the bottom of the hill. Here, exit the trail across a small parking area.
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3
Scenic contrast on Big Springs Trail
Re-enter Big Springs Trail through a fire road trail heading upward at the other side of this parking area. Now your climb steepens, winding its way through trees and open views nearing the ridge top. Looking back down the trail, a few deep green trees and bushes stand out boldly against the dry Fall grasses at a twist in the trail. Just around the bend from this POI, another curve in the trail takes you past more trees near the top.
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4
Reaching the Seaview Trail junction
At last, after climbing the final few bends, you reach the Seaview ridgeline trail. Prepare for the unveiling of the upcoming grand views! At the Seaview Trail, bear left as you begin heading north again. This POI is at the junction where Big Springs trail (heading down on the right) meets with Seaview trail. The trail will now begin to offer views both east and west of the ridge - welcome rewards on the return stretch.
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5
First wide open view of San Pablo Dam Reservoir
The initial views over the ridge to the east start shortly after entering the Seaview trail. Much of the ridge is wide open, so the vistas come easily. A long expanse of San Pablo Dam Reservoir is one of the first of many such unfolding scenes, at this POI. Afternoon shadows creep over the foreground, as the lowering sunlight brings a rich golden tint to the distant autumn hills.
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6
San Francisco view
While the east side of the Seaview ridge harbors shadows and pastels of the setting sun, the west side displays the intense hues from the coming sunset itself. Having traveled roughly a third of a mile further along the trail, you now see San Francisco appear westward in the distance, framed by the Tilden Park woodlands near a picnic stop. From here, the Bay Bridge, Treasure Island, and the city skyscrapers beyond can be observed, blanketed now in a golden sky.
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7
View before descending from Seaview ridge
Again a short distance later, a bend down the trail brings another view to the east. This provides a different glimpse of San Pablo Dam Reservoir, a fine spot for a pause, in the further reddening tones of the late afternoon.
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8
Two reservoirs in sight to the east
The trail travels now in a generally downward trend, as you've passed the ridgetop apex and continue back towards the starting point. As the peak sunset colors approach, the trail continues with its stunning viewscapes. This POI captures a full view of the two main reservoirs on the eastern side (Briones and San Pablo Dam).
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9
Tequila sunset over the Golden Gate
Continue now down past intermittent forest cover, still high enough along the ridge for views but only as the clearings permit. Not a bad trail at all, when you have a clear view of the Golden Gate Bridge, Alcatraz and Angel Islands, and Marin County beyond! Capped off in a tequila hued sunset, captured at this viewpoint. Continue on the Seaview Trail at this point, but approaching its last straightaway. Soon the trail bends downward to the west, as you proceed back towards the trailhead. Pass an intersection with Big Springs Trail, but continue straight down on Seaview. The last trail segment joins with Quarry trail to reach the staging area, and you can proceed straightaway for the most direct last leg.
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Parking off of Wildcat Rd.

This trail loop can be made during all seasons in the mild northern California climate. Winters can be cool, wet and muddy on the trails, but warm dry spells can arrive even in winter to make for sunny and crisp outings. Summer fog can at times obscure the views, but this also is variable and more typical early and late in the day. Seaview is a particularly popular trail in the best of weather, but aside from weekend middays, you'll not often be accompanied by crowds. There is total climbing of about a thousand feet to the top of the ridge, which is retraced on the loop trail back to the beginning. This starts around 1,000 feet, up to about 1,600 feet, with some up and down along the way accounting for the total gain. While generally moderate, there are a few stretches of steeper climbing that may call for a rest, even among active hikers. There is no entry charge or parking fee at this location, and just a little further up Wildcat Canyon Road is a large parking area for the Inspiration Point viewshed.

Weather
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Reviews (913)
Photos (1,424)
Recordings (846)
Completed (3,111)
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antoine carriere
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Cameron McLendon
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Hiking

Parking was rough as it was a beautiful day before lots of rain. Everyone's dogs were well mannered even if off leash. Beautiful views!

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Michael Palo
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Paige Elizabeth
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HikingGreat!

Beautiful views of the bay! I will definitely do this hike again.

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Abhishek Narwekar
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Zoe Merz
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Hiking

Beautiful views and the uphill parts are spread out and not too steep. I did this hike on Sunday and there was still some parking at 8:45 am

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Siobhan McRee
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Meenal Relekar
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Jesus Gallegos
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Charlene Larson Rotandi
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HikingMuddyOff trailRocky

Great views from top but we got confused when it took us off marked trail. The length and elevation changes were a little tough on our son. I would definitely head back to Tilden to explore other trails.

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Hethur Dunning-Kruger
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Christine Hendrick
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Hiking

Really beautiful views at certain points of the trail. Went on a Sunday and it was rather too busy for my liking so if you’re looking for a silent tranquil hike this probably isn’t the spot. But saw a lot of families so seems to be popular for kids.

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Jerry Qinghui Yu
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HikingGreat!

Great trail and view, no good public transit option.

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C Dundes
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HikingMuddy

Stunning views all around!

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Curtis Jones
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Ismael Lopez
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Hiking

It was a nice chilled yet still challenging trail..the view is amazing of all bridges

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Darwin Araujo
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Amy Brown
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HikingGreat!

Steep in some parts with amazing views. Lots of loose rock on some of the downhill sections, would strongly recommend boots to help avoid twisting your ankle

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B Gall
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Gaurav Kumar
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Great. Steep but great exercise

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Shannon Hong
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HikingGreat!

Great trail! Slightly hard to find the switchback point — it’s kind of a nontrail trail

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Curtis Jones
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Hiking

beautiful!

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Lauren Knopf
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Hiking

The trail is wide and clear about where to go. There are some rocks at points, but overall it was okay. The views are nice and there are views along the way, as soon as you start the incline.

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Samantha Adams
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Hannah White
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HikingNo shade

Great trail for the first half. We went right at the first split point. And the 2nd half was a little less developed. Sun was pretty harsh. I’m pretty out of shape and I’d consider this a hard hike! But, the views made it all worth it. So gorgeous!

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Kathryn Hetzendorfer
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Vishal Vaidya
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HikingRockyScramble

lot of scrabble, but nice views. also my dumb friend Julien got us lost.

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