Location: Redwood Regional Park (Oakland, CA)
Distance: ~5 miles
Type: Day-hike; Loop
Rating: Moderately easy
Permits & Fees: Park at the Skyline Gate Staging Area. For directions, click here. The fee is $5 per vehicle, $2 per dog, but only through the months of April-October. Parking is free November-March.
Preparation: During the rainy seasons, wear sturdy shoes and bring an extra pair of socks for the drive home. The trail is muddy and wet a majority of the way. Bathrooms are located throughout the park. This map will be your reference when navigating this trail. Please note that there are several trails and loops throughout the park. This post provides information on the East Ridge Loop.
After parking, there are two locations to start the loop. To start on the East Ridge Trail, walk left towards the trailhead (near the restrooms). The East Ridge Trail is not marked with a sign at the trailhead.
While hiking along the East Ridge Trail, there are several loops that veer off the main path including Phillips Loop, Eucalyptus Trail and Prince Trail (please refer to the map here. – Also listed above):
After about 3 miles, take the Canyon Trail down to Canyon Meadow Staging Area. Another parking lot and several bathrooms are located here. Take a right until you run into the Stream Trail:
On the Stream Trail, pass the Old Church Picnic Area and Trails End. After Trails End, continue on the trail until this sign is reached (The “up” arrow indicates the start of the Mill Trail):
Instead of going straight take a right and cross this bridge:
Take a left once crossing the bridge to continue on the Stream Trail.
I made the mistake of crossing the Redwood Creek and veered off to the Tres Sendas Trail. Watch for this sign (the double arrows mark the Stream Trail) to stay on track:
The Stream Trail portion of the hike is heavily shaded by redwoods and follows the Redwood Stream all the way back to the Skyline Gate Staging Area:
This hike was peaceful and not heavily crowded. Although the trail was extremely muddy, I recommend visiting Redwood Regional Park during the winter or early spring months to beat the crowds.