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“Amazing hike in the Santa Cruz Mountains”

Skyline to the Sea Trail
Ranked #7 of 17 things to do in Saratoga
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Owner description: From mountains to the sea, all in this one hike.
Reviewed July 23, 2013

My friend and I did the final 15 miles of the trail begining at Big Basin headquarters ending at Waddell Beach. This is an amazing experience and the trail is a relatively easy stroll through beautiful redwood groves. You also get to visit Berry Creek Falls about half way through which offers a good side hike to the cascade. The trail then the trail runs along a creek until the sea.
It took us 5 1/2 hours walking at a steady pace. You will arrive at beautiful Waddell Beach in Davenport which is around 25 miles north of Santa Cruz. Limited cellular signal and few options to return to Santa Cruz, so be prepared to get picked up. Go enjoy the Santa Cruz Mountains!

1  Thank rhoughta
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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"berry creek falls"
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9 - 13 of 15 reviews

Reviewed March 27, 2013

This hike is quite challenging. Unfortunately dogs are not allowed. The views are stunnning and change with the seasons. Be sure to take an adequate supply of drinking water. Walking shoes are reccomended.

1  Thank Martin C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 8, 2013

My friends and I went on a 4 day, 35 mile backpacking trip on the Skyline to Sea Trail. From Castle Rock, we backpacked approximately 11.4 miles to Waterman Gap. At Waterman Gap, there is an outhouse, trash can and potable water. Choosing a campsite is first come, first serve. If unlucky like us as we got there very late, we ended up near the outhouse and the smell is not very charming. So, it’s good to get there early. We then left for Jay Camp the next day. It’s near the Big Basin Park headquarters. Showers and potable water are also available. There is a small market there where you can buy drinks, food and other little items. There are also showers so bring some quarters if you plan on using it. We did not. We decided to rough it and go full stinky. Here, we checked out the beautiful Redwood trail. We passed by a waterfalls and the Berry Creek Fall Trail on our way to Sunset Camp. There is no potable water at the Sunset Camp so be sure to bring plenty of water or bring a water filter. We brought our own water filter and four 1-liter aluminum containers each. From the headquarters to Sunset Camp, it takes about 5.5 miles, then from there about 7.8 miles to Waddell Beach. Be sure to have a reservation to all camp grounds that you plan on staying at because we met a couple of groups who did not. Sadly, we had to ask a group who tried to crash at our site before we got there to vacate the site we reserved. The trails are very well maintained, as a matter of fact, we passed by some volunteers clearing up the trails.

I’m new to backpacking when I did this trip and it was kind of difficult for me. Don’t get me wrong, it was very fun but it’s a lot of hard work especially during the first day. Don’t believe when people say it’s easy because it’s all downhill from skyline to the sea. In theory it seems like it but in reality it’s not. We did so many uphill climbing. And with a 30-40 lbs. backpack, it was a lot of hard work. There were plenty of rewards though. We saw so many beautiful scenery and awesome trails. It was also very fun doing the trip with our friends. Be sure to bring adequate food like trail mix, energy bars, energy shots, powdered mix drinks to add to your water, dry food and other foods that are not too heavy. And of course, you gotta have a proper fitting backpack, shoes, right equipment and proper clothing. Do as much research as you can before doing this trip.

This is the best backpacking trip I’ve ever had so far and I would love to do it over again someday.

4  Thank ToniLuvsScuba
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 16, 2012

The trails at the top of the ridge were wonderful to run. We got up early, say 6 AM, and ran for about 90 minutes. The maps were easy to follow, the trails well marked and the scenery beautiful. The redwoods were glorious and fragrant and the madronia trees....wow. The only thing for this mountain girl to watch for was the poison oak. easy to spot, just stay out of it.

Thank SamIamSameta
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed March 28, 2012

Sweet hike! Enjoy another world! We took quite a few trails. Stop in at the ranger station, and they will suggest trails for you depending on your hiking ability, time available, and conditions of the trails. All trails were well-marked, and they will give you a nice trail map.

3  Thank rjrjj
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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