Steep Ravine Trail to Dipsea Trail Loop

Mount Tamalpais State Park

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Steep Ravine Trail to Dipsea Trail Loop
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  • Redwoods aplenty on the Steep Ravine Trail.- Steep Ravine Trail to Dipsea Trail Loop
  • The Steep Ravine Trail follows Webb Creek along the bottom of one of Tam's west facing ravines.- Steep Ravine Trail to Dipsea Trail Loop
  • Steep Ravine Trail.- Steep Ravine Trail to Dipsea Trail Loop
  • Steep Ravine Trail.- Steep Ravine Trail to Dipsea Trail Loop
  • Cascades along the Steep Ravine Trail.- Steep Ravine Trail to Dipsea Trail Loop
  • One of many bridges along the Steep Ravine Trail.- Steep Ravine Trail to Dipsea Trail Loop
  • The famous Steep Ravine ladder.- Steep Ravine Trail to Dipsea Trail Loop
  • The trail intersects Pantoll Station, a central point within Mount Tamalpais State Park. Signage here keeps hikers on track for the Old Mine Trail, which connects the Steep Ravine Trail to the Dipsea Trail.- Steep Ravine Trail to Dipsea Trail Loop
  • Old Mine Trail.- Steep Ravine Trail to Dipsea Trail Loop
  • The Dipsea junction, where bikes are unwelcome.- Steep Ravine Trail to Dipsea Trail Loop
  • Views of Tam's lower slopes and the Pacific grace this section of the Dipsea Trail.- Steep Ravine Trail to Dipsea Trail Loop
  • The Dipsea Trail.- Steep Ravine Trail to Dipsea Trail Loop
  • A peek at Bolinas Ridge from the Dipsea Trail.- Steep Ravine Trail to Dipsea Trail Loop
  • Dipsea Trail.- Steep Ravine Trail to Dipsea Trail Loop
  • Back in Steep Ravine at the Dipsea, the Steep Ravine Trail junction.- Steep Ravine Trail to Dipsea Trail Loop
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Overview + Weather
Pros: 
Diversity of landscapes throughout loop. Free parking at Whitegate Ranch Trailhead.
Cons: 
None.
Region:
Marin, CA
Congestion: 
Moderate
Preferable Season(s):
Winter, Spring, Summer, Fall
Day-Use/Parking Pass Required:
Not Required
Total Distance: 
3.40 mi (5.47 km)
Trailhead Elev.: 
610 ft (186 m)
Net Elev. Gain: 
950 ft (290 m)
Trail Uses:
Hiking
Trail type: 
Loop
Dogs allowed: 
No

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Mostly cloudy throughout the day.
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Wed

Windy until evening and rain throughout the day.
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Thu

Rain until afternoon, starting again overnight, and breezy overnight.
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Fri

Rain throughout the day and breezy starting in the afternoon, continuing until evening.
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Rain starting in the evening and windy overnight.
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Rain throughout the day and windy in the morning.
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Mon

Drizzle in the morning.
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Hike Description

Hike Description

Team

Mount Tamalpais State Park’s Steep Ravine Trail is a worthy hike by itself, but when you add the western stretch of the Dipsea Trail to make a loop out of the hike, this becomes one of Mount Tam’s most spectacular jaunts. The Steep Ravine Trail follows Webb Creek through a cascading canyon under a canopy of lush redwoods and fern-filled gullies. Pass over a handful of wooden bridges that crisscross the creek, and even scramble up a 10-foot ladder surmounting moss covered boulders. This shaded, verdant oasis feels like Land Before Time territory, and thoughts of urban hustle and bustle float away with the creek’s flow. 

On the the Dipsea Trail portion of the loop, hike the trail in a clockwise direction and you’ll emerge on Tam’s open western slopes with views to the ocean as far as the eye can see. Steep Ravine is magical on a rainy day, but choosing a clear fall or winter day will reward you with the stunning scenery from San Francisco north to Stinson Beach. If you line up your hike with a high pressure winter day, you may be lucky enough to catch the Farallon Islands twenty miles out to sea.

While this loop can be initiated from either the Whitegate Ranch Trailhead on Panoramic Highway above Stinson Beach or from Pantoll Station, it’s recommended to start the hike from Whitegate Ranch. The parking here is free (Pantoll requires a $10 day use fee), and beginning here gets the uphill push out of the way early on. Regardless of direction, note that you will have take the Old Mine Trail to connect Steep Ravine Trail to the Dipsea Trail once you reach Pantoll Station. It’s a short connector trail that is well signed and one of the only ADA accessible trails in the park. Pantoll Station has restrooms and drinking water.

Field Guide + Trail Map

Field Guide + Trail Map

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Location + Directions

Location + Directions

Nearby Camping + Lodging

(5 within a 30 mile radius)

Nearby Adventures

(99 within a 30 mile radius)

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