The Savvy Shoppers Magazine

Best Fall Hiking In The Bay Area

In summer, the weather may interfere with taking a long walk let alone a hike. With the arrival of autumn, the conditions are perfect for getting out and enjoying the beauties of nature. For those in the Bay area, the list of trails making it into the top 10 is formidable. Consider these below to make up a few of what we found to be the best hiking trails around the bay.


Olompali State Historic Park

For an easy to moderate hike, you might want to head to the 700 acres Olompali State Historic Park. The Park is known for its reconstructed Coast Miwok village as well as a few historic structures from the Rancho Olompali era. If you are a Grateful Dead fan, you might also want to check out the memorabilia from their stay, in this then Jesuit owned property during the 1960s hosting such stars as Janis Joplin and Grace Slick in the mansion on site – partially destroyed by an electrical fire in 1969. For an overview of the entire site, including the mansion, various historic structures, the once grand formal gardens and old agricultural fields, follow the 2.7-mile loop winding up the hillside. The two trails you need to take are the Loop Trail and the Miwok Trail.


Bear Creek Staging Area, Briones  Regional Park

Briones offers five different staging areas to access the 4.3-mile hike that completes a partial loop. Although too hot in the summer, this is a beautiful hike from early fall through late spring. The hiking trails include dirt fire roads and walking trails and cover open, hilly areas up to a height of just about 1370 feet at the Briones Crest. With over 5000 acres, Briones Regional Park is a hiker's paradise. Most of the trails are multi-use, but there are some excellent trails for equestrians and hikers. This is also a great dog-friendly hiking location.


Fall Creek, Henry Cowell  Redwoods State Park

This park offers some of the best hiking trails in the area for both those who want to take it easy and those who prefer a contest. If you want to enjoy a fall stroll with the family, remain in the central section of the Park. If you want to stretch your legs and other parts of your body, head to the Fall Creek unit. Here you will find an almost 7-mile ungraded trail with trees to climb over or crawl under, forested slopes and rugged canyons. The 6.8 loop hike in this section is moderate but still provides hikers with a chance to truly climb.


Castle Rock State Park

For those with a passion for nature in all its rugged beauty, hiking through Castle Rock State Park is a must. Here you will see the incredible diversity of the area from chaparral to sandstone formations and can even try your hand at rock climbing. With a good mixture of shade and open areas, the 5.49-mile partial loop will traverse an elevation change of almost a 1000 feet with the highest point at 3090 feet. Most of the trails are dirt, but the climbs can include some rocky areas.


North Peak Mount Diablo Park

For those who enjoy a challenge, consider the North Peak to offer just that. This hike is not for those who are novice hikers. Five miles in length, the route offers rugged terrain to traverse a climb to 3,000 feet to look out over the snow-crowned peaks of the Sierra Mountains.


Best Hiking Trails in the Bay Area

The Bay area offers you the chance to enjoy the great outdoors on those brilliant autumn days. The list above only scratches the surface of what you will find to make up the best hiking trails around the Bay. For more information check out

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