Wilder Ridge Trail

MODERATE 31 reviews
#6 of 22 trails in

Wilder Ridge Trail is a 7.7 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Santa Cruz, California that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round.

7.7 miles
882 feet


mountain biking

nature trips


bird watching



wild flowers

no dogs

5 months ago

The dump stuff some other reviews mentioned didn’t really seem to be an issue for me. No trash in the trail, and nothing visually that awful; just looked a little commercial-y for maybe five minutes. What DOES suck though is that a good chunk of the trail is only wide enough for people to walk single file... and yet, cyclists are allowed. If the trail gets that narrow, and with poison oak on the sides for a good part of it, you really can’t have bikes allowed on there. Especially when there are so many steep downhill parts that they come barreling down. Other reviews warned about this, and they’re 100% correct. Shade is pretty decent once you hit the loop bit- I’d say 50/50 shade/ totally exposed. Despite my rating, I probably won’t be doing this again because the issue with bikes really was that awful.

8 months ago

First time riding this trail offered a bit of everything - fun. We didn’t ride exact trail, we improvised as we went but stuck to the trail at the end. We had lots of fun going up hills, downhills, single track, and terrain was fun a bit of everything. Totally recommend it to beginners.

Wednesday, March 07, 2018

I like Wilder a lot, and this loop is so beautiful in many ways, but the dump as you’re descending the ridge on the north side of the loop is kind of a buzzkill: trash strewn along fence, smells, noise, etc. Also, this is a big mountain biking spot, so I have to be extra careful if I want to let my dog off leash on the main part of the loop because people can come down pretty fast. I like it best on weekday mornings when it is most quiet. The views are spot on and there are great wildflowers, but it’s worth it to add in the Enchanted Loop to get more diversity of environment, but I’m just a person who likes forest settings best!

mountain biking
Monday, November 27, 2017


Tuesday, September 05, 2017

Good uphill climb counter-clockwise. Recommend not doing the full loop, after passing the enchanted loop turnoff, the trail is covered in poison oak for about a mile and half...not very enjoyable. We went on a cloudy day, so the view wasn't anything, but could see how on a clear day, it would be pretty.

Sunday, August 20, 2017

My favorite hike in the bay area. I like the mix of mountain and sea elements and the diversity of runners, walkers and mountain bikers. Something for everyone.

Monday, July 17, 2017

Ideal place to mountain biking where you can oversee the ocean . Parking at wilder ranch parking lot , walking through historic farm houses and tunnel under highway 1, then you are on the trail north of highway 1. It takes 40 minutes before you can get in the shades in hills , so prepare hat and enough water are essential .

Wednesday, July 05, 2017

Highly unmaintained at this time of the year. Full of bugs and horse waste. Will try it again in Spring.

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Gorgeous loop! The full loop is a little overgrown on the back end along the fence, so be prepared for poison oak and thistles if you decide to do the full loop, otherwise the Zane Gray shortcut is lovely! Be prepared for a steep incline either way!

Monday, June 12, 2017

We hiked this trail in early April. The wildflowers are gorgeous, and this trail gives you everything, meadows, ocean views, wooded areas. The downside was that it wasn't very well marked. We got lost a few times. However, we would certainly hike it again, now that we are more familiar with it!

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Green open grass land wide trails beautiful area. We got a little lost because one of the markers fell over. So our loop was a little under 6 miles. By the way, access to trail is through the preserve ranch area in the back and through a tunnel. A few folks got lost and kept going. No sign that mentions this ...

mountain biking
Monday, August 15, 2016

My boyfriend and I had a blast riding this train! Will definitely come back

recorded Recording - Apr 27, 04:52 PM

22 days ago

7 months ago

10 months ago

Saturday, April 14, 2018

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Sunday, December 03, 2017

Monday, November 20, 2017

Thursday, November 02, 2017

mountain biking
Thursday, September 21, 2017

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Sunday, July 30, 2017

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