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Sunset, Berry Creek Falls and Howard King Trail Loop

HARD 169 reviews

Sunset, Berry Creek Falls and Howard King Trail Loop is a 10.5 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Boulder Creek, California that features a waterfall and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking, camping, and backpacking and is accessible year-round.

Distance: 10.5 miles Elevation Gain: 2,785 feet Route Type: Loop

backpacking

camping

hiking

forest

river

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

no dogs

Please note that as of May 2019, portions of the Skyline to Sea Trail and the entirety of Timm's Creek Trail due to storm damage. As of August 2019, parts of the Sunset Trail is closed. There are detours in place.

hiking
20 days ago

This is an OK loop; mostly in the trees and it didn't seem to have that much old growth redwoods - at least nothing spectacular. The waterfalls are nice but I was hoping to see less people because of the length of the loop. Ignore the closure of the skyline to the sea trail; its yet another bureaucratic state park closure for no reason. I think there is 2 trees downed on the trail that are easily bypassible.

hiking
closed
1 month ago

Parts of sunset trial are closed and you have to go on a detour

hiking
bugs
2 months ago

This was such a great hike! Lots of incline and decline, my hip and legs were definitely feeling the burn. Great views of the waterfalls, you can get you feet wet at the second waterfall and enjoy a snack. Dogs are not allowed on the trail which is a little bit of a bummer but still a nice cool hike!

hiking
muddy
3 months ago

backpacking
3 months ago

Great backpacking to sunset camp. Has 10 sites with food lockers and a toilet. Waterfalls before you get there. Recommend skyline accent and sunset back to bay camp/ basin HQ. research and know your goals before you head out.

hiking
3 months ago

Hit the trail around 9:45am on a Sunday. Party of 6 and a leisurely lunch led to a relatively slow pace. Finished around 4:45pm. Linked the following together for a ~13mi hike loop: Skyline to the Sea-Sunset Connector-Sunset-Berry Creek Falls-Howard King-Hihn Hammond to Mt McAbee Overlook-Hihn Hammond Connector-Skyline to the Sea.

hiking
bugs
muddy
3 months ago

We went clockwise starting (after detour) at Skyline to Howard King awesome (overlook) views of the ocean.. then Berry Creek Falls... the falls are beautiful, I highly recommend going up berry creek trail even if you double back. It’s amazing, lil waterfalls all the way up. We continued on sunset trail and it’s no joke...! Steady uphill (Some STAIRS) for 5miles. Bring water, bug spray and strong glutes!!! Loved this hike! Highly recommend! We ended up at 14miles with detours (and mistakes) ✌

hiking
bugs
4 months ago

Absolutely incredible hike, there really are no words to describe how breathtaking Big Basin is. Some parts of the trail were closed so it ended up being pretty close to 12 miles and took me about 5 hours. Beautiful and challenging, for me at least. Definitely bring some bug repellant and get out there early to miss the crowds :)

hiking
bugs
4 months ago

The mosquitos were out in full force and it was super muddy through some parts, but the falls at around the halfway mark are pretty awesome. Even the scary climb up the side of one of the falls was really fun. Got to the park around 8:30am and the parking lots were rapidly filling up so if you’re gonna do it, go early.

hiking
5 months ago

Takes about 1.5 hours to get there (google maps says lesser time to the state park but route from AllTrails). Parking can be difficult to find, so try to get there by 10 or 10:30am latest. It’s best to have cash to pay with. There are pretty good flush toilets near the park HQ. This hike basically combines a couple of different hikes and makes it harder and longer. Berry creek is popular and gets crowded but Howard king isn’t, and you’ll barely run into ppl there. There are a couple of places where it’s easy to venture off the trail, so it’s best to keep checking the recording/route every 10-15 mins, unless you’re on a long straight stretch. Berry creek is usually closed early in the year and dries out later in the year, so it seems like April-August might ve the best time. Most of the trail is shaded with fiat redwood trees. Would prolly avoid coming here after regular rains. A really good workout with lots of elevation!

A couple trails were closed, but the waterfall was awesome. Ended up being closer to 12 miles

hiking
5 months ago

Trail with nice waterfalls approximately mid-way. Easy to get lost due to incorrectly marked directions though!

hiking
6 months ago

Hiked this on 4/6. Took 4.5 hours with a break for lunch. Falls are fantastic right now due to all the rain. Lots of fallen trees and mud — kinda like walking through pudding. With boots and poles, you should be good.

6 months ago

There are no words to describe it it's full of wonderful place and big as small waterfalls.

hiking
6 months ago

Beautiful loop through many different landscapes with 3 falls as highlight along with giant Redwoods. The hike is longer than listed recording on multiple gps trackers. The climb to the overlook is a long killer after the falls but seeing ocean waves was great. Recommend!

hiking
muddy
6 months ago

hiking
blowdown
bridge out
muddy
washed out
7 months ago

As my first hike in California, this was amazing, I think the condition of the trail was a bonus.

hiking
blowdown
muddy
7 months ago

5 Stars! Difficult hike but well worth it. Lots of fallen/broken trees on the trail but don't let that deter you away from the trail. Go now due to the recent rains. All waterfalls are flowing. Bring snacks and water. Walking sticks encouraged. Trails can get muddy.

hiking
8 months ago

Rain, rain, rain ... but in the Redwoods wouldn't have it any other way. Amazing forest, and the falls were much better than expected Several options for a loop and had to detour on one of them due to walking bridge being washed out. All in all, a great hike to explore the local geography.

9 months ago

It’s pretty fun with great waterfalls.

11 months ago

I'll admit I was unsure of the trails quality for the first half of the detoured loop, a detour because a good third of the stated loop is rendered unhike-able. Once we reached the waterfalls, though, wow. After the waterfall (moving counter-clock) you reach the trail's maximum elevation where the terrain shifts suddenly from the damp redwood covered valley floor to dry granite ridges. Nature rocks.

hiking
11 months ago

Absolutely fun hike. A must for anyone with an itch for nature and to escape.

11 months ago

We did this on Saturday, 9/15 and was amazing. Love it. The parking lot does get crowded, but the trails aren’t. So, it was lovely and mostly shaded.

running
Wednesday, October 10, 2018

I hike often and am relatively fit (mid 20s, female, athletic) and this trail took 3 hours to complete with a bit of trail running and a light pack. Paid $10 for parking at the trailhead. It’s a pretty waterfall and hiking through the redwoods was gorgeous. Recommend arriving early so you have the trail to yourself. Slightly difficult to navigate with trail closures so grab a free map at the visitor center!

hiking
Sunday, September 16, 2018

Despite the throngs of people at the trailhead car park (Saturday 9 am) this was actually a reasonably quiet loop. I’m quite a fast hiker and completed it in just under 4 hours. If you are used to hiking or are otherwise fit,, you will probably agree that it is pretty easy terrain (though there are warning signs about its difficulty, so it’s important, as always, to really know your ability). Pretty views out to the sea (probably shrouded in fog in winter). The falls are not all that big, but are pretty. Diverse views and ecosystems. Definitely talk to one of the excellent staff rangers when you go in as they can give very clear instructions about how to start (I suggest counter-clockwise) in a way that is not obvious on the all trails or the paper map. I will definitely return and do this as a trail run! A warning: by 1 pm the car park was packed and rows of cars were waiting. Strongly encourage weekday or v early starts!

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