These days we can scroll through endless curated feeds delivering exactly what we like to see. We can check out Instagram photos full of beautiful landscapes, majestic mountains and spectacular vistas right from the comfort of our own couch. Or — and this is a big “OR,” people — we can just get out there and do things the old fashioned way, using our own two feet instead of our scrolling finger to transport us to a beautiful place.
The Bay Area is a stunning region where nature and metropolis meet and an abundance of scenic settings provide the perfect backdrop for some of life’s most enjoyable occasions. Thus, we present to you a guide to some of the best Bay Area hikes where one can experience life’s many adventures.
Castle Rock State Park Location: Los Gatos Hike: Castle Rock Trail Camp Distance: 2.6 miles Ideal for: Girl’s mini backpacking trip, ample #nofilter needed Instagram photo-taking opportunities, seeing a waterfall with actual water.
Henry Cowell Redwoods State Park Location: Ben Lomond Hike: Fall Creek Trail to Limekilns Distance: 6.7 miles Ideal for: Having a picnic atop the limekiln ruins, dropping knowledge bombs on your hiking companion about the process of creating quicklime in the 19th century, being surrounded by gorgeous ancient Redwoods.
Big Basin Redwoods State Park Location: Felton Hike: Eden Trail Distance: 0.5 miles Ideal for: Taking a cool dip as the trail leads you to the Garden of Eden swimming hole, lounging on the rocks beneath a canopy of redwoods, skinny-dipping with other visiting bathers.
Point Reyes National Seashore Location: Point Reyes Hike: Abbotts Lagoon Distance: 2.8 miles Ideal for: Quiet picnicking spot, running off into the sunset on an often-secluded beach, spotting various marsh birds. Crockett Hills Regional Park Location: Rodeo Hike: Edwards Creek Trail to Wood Rat Trail Distance: 5 miles Ideal for: Bragging rights that you avoided the crowds in Muir Woods, hiking with your pooch off leash, trail beers as there aren’t many fellow hikers in sight.