Stevens Trail

MODERATE 612 reviews
#1 of 145 trails in

Stevens Trail is a 9 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Colfax, California that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

DISTANCE
9.0 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
1735 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dog friendly

birding

hiking

mountain biking

nature trips

trail running

walking

cave

forest

river

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

no shade

Stevens Trail is very scenic, rich in history and is on the National Register of Historic places. Built by Truman Allen Stevens it was used as a toll road for miners that needed to get from the mining town of Iowa Hill to the railroad town of Colfax. The trail was forgotten but then rediscovered in 1969 but a boy scout, Eric Kiel, and re-charted as part of his scouting project. Today it is maintained by the Bureau of Land Management.

hiking
1 day ago

Great experience to do this hike. It's says 9 miles but it's about 8 on my watch. anyway its not really easy ones specially when it's hot outside This hike with great stunning views of nature. Recommended: start early to avoid hot day weather, have good shoes even boots bcse of plenty of rock areas (we saw people in flipflops I have no words ), drinking water maybe some snack so you can relax and enjoy beautiful views .

7 days ago

I loved this trail. Started at the market in Iowa Hill, (Stevens Trail East). Stay to the right where the trail forks (about 100 yards from tail head) and you’ll stay in the shade the entire way to an absolutely BEAUTIFUL swimming hole at the end. Wear good boots, this isn’t a trail for tennis shoes or flip flops. *** Now I must pay tribute to PENNY, the local dog that literally was looking out for me the whole way. I saw a brown bear (50 yards away) on the way in and she kept her eye on it, as I did. The bear seemed uninterested and we went in opposite directions.. She chased away something, rustling in the brush, on the way out. She swam after a stick while at the swimming hole. She kept bringing it back for me to throw. We hung out about an hour there, and shared beef jerky, then hiked back. Loved this dog!!! She was truly a great little companion and guide, never getting too far ahead, always checking to make sure I was coming along.

trail running
8 days ago

Still one if my favorite trails!! Just went yesterday and it was magnificent! Definitely extremely hot in the direct sunlight, so I'd encourage you to go earlier than later if you're sensitive to heat! The shaded areas are beautiful, green and cool! The water is low, but still swimmable! The trails are all clear and easily identifiable!

13 days ago

Great hike! Started the hike around 730 and was back at the parking lot a little after 10 with about 20 minute stop at the river.

hiking
16 days ago

I've been hiking this trail for 20 years and simply love it. It's great to run as well. Spectacular views at any time of the year and spring offers an abundant amount of wildflowers. Summers on this trail can be extremely warm though, so go early. The BLM needs to update the trail head sign to reflect the true mileage of about 7.25-7.50 miles round trip, not 9.

17 days ago

It’s a beautiful trail. Your phone should still have service when you go on the hike. You can track where you are at using your google map or this app. There are times that the trail cuts into two. So make sure you remember which way you go. It’s not anything you won’t remember though. Also, keep a look out for poison oaks. There are tons everywhere. About a mile into the hike, you’ll be walking along the river so you’ll see the beauty of it. There are some trails that take you right down to the river if you want to cut the hike a little short. Definitely an easy hike going but you’ll face some challenges coming back to your car because the trail will be inclined. Enjoy the river. The water is still cold, but it’s not anything we can’t handle.

hiking
18 days ago

Beautiful trail! Views of the river for most part of the trail, lots wildflowers make it very pretty. It can get very hot later in the day since a little more than half the trial is exposed with no tree cover, so starting early really helps. Started the hike at 7 30, was back to the parking lot at 11 45, spent about 30 min at the river.

hiking
25 days ago

This trails is absolutely beautiful. It has tons of small creeks that are little water falls. If you make it all the way to the river bring your swim trunks and a towel because the water is perfect to relax and stay cool in.

Cons :

There is poison oak literally everywhere. The majority of the trail has poison oak at the edge of each side of the trails.

This might scare some, but I did see a adolescent rattle snake on my hike today. He scurried off the trail as soon as he saw us but still a forewarning.

hiking
26 days ago

Got lucky that May 26th was a cool day and perfect for Stevens Trail! Took 3 hours and 15 minutes down to the river and back. But we were at the river for only about 15 minutes. Great hike!

1 month ago

Awesome hike. Easy down, hard getting back up. But good views and lunch along the river make it worth the effort. Never seen it too crowded but you will have to step off the trail and let someone pass now and then. Lots of lizards and butterflies. Watch out for ticks.

1 month ago

Great hike to challenge yourself! Very scenic with the reward of the beautiful water at the bottom!

hiking
1 month ago

mostly downhill on the way there. but then it's almost all uphill the way back :/ perfect for dogs!! we loved it!!

hiking
1 month ago

Beautiful spring hike. Lots of wildflowers. Amazing views of the American River. Wildlife sightings such as hawks snakes and lizard. Moderate to difficult hike but well worth it. Downhill first and uphill second. Wear good boots that are waterproof because there are small water crossings. Only thing is to be careful because there is LOTS of poison oak and the trail can be narrow.

hiking
1 month ago

Absolutely amazing hike. Beautiful scenery throughout the hike. Now is the time to go, the weather is perfect and wild flowers are blooming everywhere. Its not too difficult but it is up hill pretty much the entire way back. And be warned, there is poison oak EVERYWHERE, where pants .

hiking
1 month ago

This was such a good fun hike I highly recommended getting there as early as possible we got there at 6:50am and were literally the first ones on the trial so it was so nice and beautiful such great views I have a huge fear of heights but didn’t think it was too bad it’s a breeze going down hill but on the way back I hope u guys dont skip leg day it’s a little work out I’ve hiked worse but overall I had a blast

hiking
1 month ago

Beautiful short hike. Easy if you’re in good shape. If you’re not I would suggest you not try going all the way down, stop at the waterfall enjoy the view and slowly make your way back up . Lots of poison oak on this trail.

hiking
1 month ago

Great hike along the American river. The trail start as an easy down hill and slowly become an easy switch-back all the way to the cliff along the river. Great time to go during the spring (flowers).One down side is that their is little shade when you finally get to the river. Overall great hike.
P.S depending on which trail you take back you might find that one route is much more difficult then the other. I’ll let you find that out yourself!

hiking
1 month ago

We have done this hike many times and again today 4-23-18. The wildflowers are in full bloom. We had lunch at the river at 4.08 miles on my Garman. I'm not sure why all the write ups say 9 miles. I've run my GPS several times and it shows just under 4 miles at the creek crossing at the river. You would have to walk another .5 miles along the river boulders to make it 9 miles out and back. We were off the trail before 2:00 pm which I am grateful for as the weather was getting hotter. I suggest an early departure in the warmer months. We did the bike loop and came up the fire road which added a little distance. We measured 8.29 miles at about 1350' gain. It was a great hike!

hiking
1 month ago

Great trail! Pretty scenery throughout!

hiking
2 months ago

beautiful trail. not moderate in my opinion but that is because the elevation change. really a stretch for the return trip, all up hill

2 months ago

A great hike with gorgeous views of the American River. Take a good 4 hours to enjoy it in full. lots of wild flowers along the trail.

2 months ago

Excellent hike beautiful wild flowers

hiking
2 months ago

A very beautiful and scenic hike. We stopped just after Secret Ravine as the trail tapers off along the river bed. On a lovely/mild day like today, I would still recommend wearing sunscreen, and bringing LOTS of water. As an out-and-back trail, you start high and descend down to the river, so prepare to walk pretty continuously uphill on the way back.

hiking
2 months ago

Great hike, went all the way to the river, had lunch and turned back. I had a later start so was hiking back in the afternoon and it was warm. Beautiful wildflowers right now, really enjoyed the views. My only slight concern was crossing the waterfall halfway through, as the water was moving pretty quickly, but the rocks were not slippery and the trail picked up right on the other side. Wonderful hike, highly recommend! (Bring water!!)

hiking
2 months ago

Great hike! I would totally go back.

2 months ago

Amazing views

3 months ago

My favorite local trail❣️

hiking
3 months ago

Scenic hike. We went on a Saturday and the trail was fairly busy. I would disagree with the hard rating, however. Moderate would be more appropriate. The hike is downhill so getting back is the only 'difficult' part.

3 months ago

My fav trail run with gorgeous views and sounds throughout entire trail! Very tough running uphill the way back but worth the challenge!

hiking
3 months ago

A gem of a hike. It's on BLM land and our dogs were stoked to be able to explore off-leash. The trailhead is right off of the 80, an easy find. The hike starts off in a forested area until the trail becomes narrow along the mountainside. It's a very steady decline to the river and was a fairly easy 9 mile loop. Beautiful views of the American River! The trail can get quite muddy and the air is chilly during the winter so come prepared!

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