This is one of the better redwood hikes in the San Francisco Bay Area -- which is nice because not so long there was no forest left... more » here: almost all of it had been clear-cut.
The second-growth redwoods at Pescadero Creek County Park demonstrate a forest's uncanny ability to regenerate itself, if people give it the chance. Several groves of skinny young redwoods are rapidly reclaiming this section of the Santa Cruz Mountains.
This hike is pretty straightforward: find the Tarwater Loop signs and follow them. For the track shown here, drive to the headquarters of Portola Redwoods County Park and hike over via the Pomponio Trail (it's about a mile and a quarter each way).
Or you can hike in from the Tarwater Trailhead for a hike of under five miles.
Note the Portola route lets you start by going uphill and finish going downhill, while the Tarwater Loop has all the climbing at the end.
Best time to go: Since this is mostly shady forest walking, it's a good escape from the heat in the summer. Spring wildflower season is always gorgeous and even the rainy season will be pretty nice in the redwoods.
Park hours: 8 a.m. to around dusk. less «