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Sky Trail Loop, Bear Valley to Mount Wittenberg

Point Reyes National Seashore

Marin, California

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Sky Trail Loop, Bear Valley to Mount Wittenberg
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  • The entrance at Bear Valley Visitor Center.- Sky Trail Loop, Bear Valley to Mount Wittenberg
  • Starting out in the meadows.- Sky Trail Loop, Bear Valley to Mount Wittenberg
  • Mule deer along the Sky Loop.- Sky Trail Loop, Bear Valley to Mount Wittenberg
  • Ferns in the rain forest.- Sky Trail Loop, Bear Valley to Mount Wittenberg
  • The Point Reyes rain forest.- Sky Trail Loop, Bear Valley to Mount Wittenberg
  • Following the fire road along the Sky Loop.- Sky Trail Loop, Bear Valley to Mount Wittenberg
  • Turning onto Old Pine Trail.- Sky Trail Loop, Bear Valley to Mount Wittenberg
  • Pathway cut into the forest. Watch for poison oak.- Sky Trail Loop, Bear Valley to Mount Wittenberg
  • Unidentified species (help us identify it by providing feedback).- Sky Trail Loop, Bear Valley to Mount Wittenberg
  • Walking through the tall fir trees.- Sky Trail Loop, Bear Valley to Mount Wittenberg
  • Left to Sky Campground, right to Mount Wittenberg.- Sky Trail Loop, Bear Valley to Mount Wittenberg
  • View of the Point Reyes Penninsula.- Sky Trail Loop, Bear Valley to Mount Wittenberg
  • View of the Point Reyes Penninsula.- Sky Trail Loop, Bear Valley to Mount Wittenberg
  • The rain forest.- Sky Trail Loop, Bear Valley to Mount Wittenberg
  • Trail to Mount Wittenberg's summit.- Sky Trail Loop, Bear Valley to Mount Wittenberg
  • Burnt forest passageway at the Mount Wittenberg summit.- Sky Trail Loop, Bear Valley to Mount Wittenberg
  • Sunset over the Pacific.- Sky Trail Loop, Bear Valley to Mount Wittenberg
  • Take the Meadow Trail back to the Bear Valley Visitor Center- Sky Trail Loop, Bear Valley to Mount Wittenberg
  • Open meadow.- Sky Trail Loop, Bear Valley to Mount Wittenberg
  • Mist rising from the meadow on the way back to the Bear Valley Visitor Center.- Sky Trail Loop, Bear Valley to Mount Wittenberg
  • Quail along the trail.- Sky Trail Loop, Bear Valley to Mount Wittenberg
  • Returning to the Bear Valley Trailhead.- Sky Trail Loop, Bear Valley to Mount Wittenberg
  • Returning to the parking area.- Sky Trail Loop, Bear Valley to Mount Wittenberg
Overview + Weather
Pros: 
Beautiful forests and views. Various loops and lengths available.
Cons: 
Can be crowded.
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Region:
Marin, CA
Congestion: 
Moderate
Pets allowed: 
No
Net Elevation Gain: 
1,291.00 ft (393.50 m)
Parking Pass: 
Not Required
Preferable Season(s):
Winter, Spring, Summer, Fall
Total Distance: 
7.00 mi (11.27 km)
Trail type: 
Loop
Trailhead Elevation: 
101.00 ft (30.78 m)
Current Local Weather:
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Hike Description

Hike Description

Contributor

Point Reyes National Seashore is a 70,000-acre outdoor playground about 30 miles north of San Francisco. With ample trails, campgrounds, and beaches, Point Reyes attracts outdoor and nature enthusiasts from around the world. The area has a resident tule elk herd, a huge variety of bird species, and it is a favorite mating spot for northern elephant seals.

The Coastal Miwoks originally inhabited the area for over 3,000 years. In 1579, Sir Francis Drake landed at Drake's Cove, close to a Miwok settlement. Over the next 400 years the area changed hands many times, and land boundaries were often disputed. Finally, in 1962, the Point Reyes National Seashore was established, protecting the land from further development.

This seven-mile hike can be done in a single day; however, overnighters who reserve a spot early enough will have the chance to stay at the beautiful Sky Campground. Begin your hike at the Bear Valley Visitor Center. For the first 1.6 miles you will follow the Bear Valley Trail. There are many offshoot trails that you can take to Sky Trail depending on how many miles you want to travel. Old Pine Trail is a good choice, and it meanders 800 feet up through a rainforest. Once you've reached Sky Trail, you will continue ascending for another mile until you reach an intersection. If you are spending the night, continue on Sky Trail for another half mile to reach the campground. Take the Mount Wittenberg Trail to visit the forested summit. Or simply hike the 1.6 mile Meadow Trail back down to Bear Valley Trail to conclude your hike.

Note that poison oak is ubiquitous in the area, so be cautious if you need to venture off trail.

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(9 within a 30 mile radius)

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(69 within a 30 mile radius)

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