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Sky Trail and Coast Trail Loop

HARD 17 reviews

Sky Trail and Coast Trail Loop is a 13.7 mile lightly trafficked loop trail located near Point Reyes Station, California that features beautiful wild flowers. The trail is rated as difficult and primarily used for hiking and trail running.

Distance: 13.7 miles Elevation Gain: 2,142 feet Route Type: Loop

hiking

running

beach

forest

views

wild flowers

wildlife

no dogs

hiking
1 month ago

This loop provides the opportunity to experience some of the most beautiful aspects of Pt Reyes, without the crowds. There are no facilities at the trailhead, & just a few parking spots in the lot (maybe 10). On the Sky Trail, it was like the Enchanted Forest, or somewhere in New Zealand. The trail goes through dense forest, and the trees are old & gnarly & covered with moss. The path is soft to walk on most of the time, padded with pine needles. Sky Camp is just a couple of miles in; it has drinking water & bathrooms as well as a picnic table. You'll have amazing, sweeping views of the coast - at first little peeks through the trees, then eventually it opens up. Once you turn onto the Coast Trail, you're just hiking parallel to the beach but still up above it. You first come to a little side trail to Kelham Beach; we didn't take that one because we heard Sculpture Beach was a "can't miss." So our plan was to have lunch there. And it is indeed a beautiful little beach. Unfortunately it was so windy that we had to find a sheltered spot (meaning we had no view) to avoid swallowing sand. After about 25 minutes of being sand-blasted we gave up & started hiking up the rest of the loop, thinking we'd find a spot higher up the Woodward Valley trail that was out of the wind. They should have named it Windward Valley - which is another way of saying we thought wrong! It was so windy hiking up that hill that we had to hold our hats down. And there's zero shade for quite awhile. But then we got back to forest & it was calm & peaceful again. We hardly saw anyone on the Sky or Woodward Valley trails, but there were more people on the Coast Trail. These are also horse trails & we couldn't help but think what a fun ride it would be. We only saw 3 horses. We also saw a few pairs of quail tiptoeing across Sky Trail, & a group of vultures or buzzards at Sky Camp just sitting around. The hiking isn't terribly hard, as the path is comfortable & not too steep - it's only hard because there is a lot of uphill, & it's long. We had a 3-liter water pack for 2 people & had 1/2-liter left at the end. We'd have definitely used it up if it had been hotter (it was about 70 & sunny & quite breezy). Took us about 7 hours, including about an hour total of all our rest stops.

hiking
Monday, August 13, 2018

The hike provides a sampler of the best of what Point Reyes has to offer: beautiful pine forests and meadows, sweeping coastal views, and a few beaches that are perfect lunch spots. Most of Sky trail is shaded, but Coast trail is exposed to the sun and wind. Don't miss the short round trip to Sculptured beach: if the tide is low enough, you will be able to see interesting rock formations and a small arch on the South side of the beach.

running
2 months ago

hiking
3 months ago

hiking
4 months ago

running
6 months ago

hiking
9 months ago

hiking
Monday, June 11, 2018

hiking
Saturday, November 18, 2017

Friday, January 01, 2016

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