Explore the most popular forest trails near Arnold with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

It was a nice trek. Less crowd then the north grove

Wow, you have to see the big trees to take in their enormity. Breathtaking! Great hike, take your bug spray.

hiking
11 days ago

Smoke shortened the hike and ruined the views, but was great otherwise. Be careful - very easy to get messed up with many unmarked trails crossing.

Great walking tour with Mary Ann.

Short, easy hike that's good for kids. Takes you through one of the world's oldest sequoia groves.

Great hike when you get to the end. Beautiful views. Need better markings at the beginning of the trail.

We did the first 3.8 miles of this hike this weekend (and then branched off at Wheats Meddow along the "pack trail" towards Montgmery Meadow). It was very hard work going over many fallen trees and densely overgrown hard to follow trails (occasional streamers). GPS and map essential! It is beautiful, as all the others reviewers point out.

hiking
25 days ago

We actually went on this trail two days in a row, and parked at the Valley View drive parking lot both times. The first day we intended to reach Cougar Rock and Top of the World. However, we took a left on the ART instead of a right, so instead we got some beautiful forest. The next day, we took a right on the ART and got to those destinations.

Top of the world is not clearly marked but it should be evident once you get to the top of a hill after climbing switchbacks with little blocking foliage.

There were a fair number of insects—most harmless flies, but some mosquitoes as well. I highly recommend insect repellent

Well marked trails and well maintained, lots of points of entry.

Beautiful views, easy/ moderate

Love this trail and the water fall was so beautiful . Good hike done it today 7/14

Beautiful, go early take 2 or 3 water bottles. Take it easy and stop to enjoy the views. Take photos, you may get a great one for your Christmas card

Nice and easy scenic hike. The giant sequoia trees make me awe-struck every time. Highly recommend!

This hike was awesome. Especially for our fist ever hike! My mom and I were hesitant about doing a 5 mile hike but we made it though and loved every moment of it.

trail running
1 month ago

Connected to this loop as part of a longer run from Arnold. It was a great “destination”. The sequoias are impressive and I ran the mile loop without even noticing I was running.

trail running
1 month ago

Went running here and it was great. Nice views and nice forests.

hiking
1 month ago

Great hike, however, at post 10 it’s says to go left but to get to the falls you should go right. Also bring bug repellent. We got attacked!

Had a great time with the family on this hike. We have 4 kids all under the age of 6 and we all made it! 2 were on our backs, but the 6 and 4 year olds hiked it and enjoyed the large trees and beautiful scenery. Weather was good in the 80’s and was a good escape from the hot weather in Sacramento. We were here mid week in June and trails were not crowded. We even took time to view the camp sites for a return trip to camp next time. Highly recommend for a easy family hike.

Good stroll with the kids!

A beautiful trail, I took away one star due to it being so crowded. There were 100 or so people and the trail felt claustrophobic at times. However, the tress were plentiful and beautiful. The giant stump of a sequoia cut down in 1853 at the start of the trail was sobering. Also, the beginning of the trail isn't well marked and many people take the loop trail backwards (which contributed to the crowding).

I got their early and I only saw one other human on the trail (it is orders of magnitude less traveled than the North Grove trail). This is really more of an out and back trail with a small loop section rather than a loop trail. However, it makes you feel really remote during the hike. The Palace Hotel tree is stunning and worth the hike. I added on the Bradley Grove trail as well for two additional miles.

Nice trail, as of May 2018 they are removing some trees from a valley so there is a large fire road. We ended up following the larger road instead of turning off to a smaller trail which is I think what we were supposed to do.

hiking
2 months ago

We had a great time hiking to Cougar Rock on the ART today. The sometimes steep terrain was worth the view and the trail was well maintained and manageable even with my children, ages 7 and 11.

We accessed the trail at Valley View Road. The access off this road provides the shortest route to destinations like Cougar Rock and Top of the World according to their website. I downloaded the map on my iPhone on the Avenza app as suggested on their website. It was super helpful and followed our direction even though I had no cell service. The trail is well marked, but can be confusing in some places when the trail intersects with other routes. It also helped to keep us motivated to see how close we were to our destination.

The view from Cougar Rock was awesome, but a little overwhelming and frightening with kids. I kept them close to me, away from the edge, and never took my eyes off them.

My only advice is to use mosquito repellent! We couldn’t explore Coswell Creek (we had to pass through it to get to Cougar Rock) because the mosquitoes were thick and aggressive. We literally had to run through swatting at ourselves to get away.

Overall, an enjoyable day with beautiful scenery.

backpacking
2 months ago

I have done this loop a few times when backpacking. I love it. Fun trails and a beautiful area. Never many people out if any. And I find it funny to read the other reviews that complain about the part of the trail (moving east from the damn south side of reservoir) that has absolutely not been maintained in years. That was my favorite part. Don’t get me wrong. You will be climbing over fallen trees and walking throw tall grass and baby pine trees for quite a while. It’s hard work. You will also have to use a map or GPS to figure out where you are going. But all said and done, that part was a blast if you are willing to work for it.

3 months ago

Beautiful and family friendly regardless of the time of year. I was here about 2 months ago and it snowed while we did the short trail, yet it was still very doable. They also have guided tours and you learn a lot about the trees and history here. The staff is really nice too!

A good cardio workout without killing you. My wife and I are 72 and we met lots of fellow hikers our age and older making the hike look easy.

Lots of huge redwood trees. Truly inspiring and enjoyable!

hiking
3 months ago

wonderful views went hiking today and it was cold out when we arrived it was about 10 miles. we had our dog with us and she did fine. didnt see any parking fees so assumed free parking.

This trail will lead you to the S.A. river. But if you continue on down stream another 100yd you come to the top of the waterfall, and for the sure footed you can squeeze around the rocks and make your way under the falls. The water was running so fast we could literally get under the shelf of the water fall for well deserved rest.

One of my favorite trails in Calaveras County! Gorgeous expansive views at Manuel Peak, Cougar Rock, Top of the World and San Antonio Falls. I have been to all of these scenic lookout points, and they never disappoint. The trail is not difficult, but can be challenging at times depending on the direction you're going. I will say that it can be easy to get turned around or lost on this trail due to all the different places you can start it from and all the various spur trails + forestry roads, so just a heads up. Bring a map of it or take a screen shot of the online ART map with your phone...(in case you run out of phone service). Enjoy the trail and please remember to pack out whatever you pack in -- as a local from the surrounding area, this place is special to me. Hoping to keep it that way and nurture the natural beauty! Cheers :)

Great family trip and self guided tour even in the snow!!!

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