Pets allowed
Allowed with Restrictions
Elevation Gain
1,867.00 ft (569.06 m)
Trail type
There-and-back
Distance
7.86 mi (12.65 km)
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

Sweeney Ridge and adjacent trails are managed and maintained by the Golden Gate National Recreation Area. Sandwiched between San Bruno and Pacifica, the trail system is easily accessed by locals who want to get outdoors for a hike or a run. On a clear day, at the top, the San Francisco International Airport, South San Francisco and San Bruno are visible from the Sweeney Ridge Trail out to the east, and the Pacific Ocean visible to the west. 

At the trailhead, you will begin your ascent up 1.7 miles on Sneath Lane Trail. This is a hilly, paved trail that curves around the ridge and is mostly exposed. Views of San Andreas Lake can be seen gradually climbing up the trail. During the spring, the sides of the trail are beautified by a variety of wildflowers. Near the top, you will come across a small Eucalyptus grove.

At the junction, make a right to begin Sweeney Ridge Trail which is also paved. In about a mile, you will pass the historic Nike Missile Control Site and make a right to start the dirt road down leading to the Notch Trail. Instead of going all the way down the Notch Trail however, make a left when you see the Mori Ridge Trailhead sign.

The descent becomes steep in some areas, however this stretch includes some pine trees peppered along the way making this the highlight of the hike. The views showcase Mori Point, Hwy 1 and beaches in Pacifica along with Pacifica neighborhoods and the Pacifica Pier. The trail ends at the Shelldance Orchid Gardens. Feel free to take a break before the steep ascent on Mori Ridge to retrace your footsteps back to your car. 

There is no parking fee, however, the parking lot is quite small. It is best to use side street parking and just walk down to the trailhead. Additionally, there are no restrooms at the parking lot, however there is one pit toilet near the Bay Discover Site at the top of Sneath Lane Trail. Dogs are allowed on leash. 

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)

Winter
Spring
Summer
Fall

Congestion

Moderate

Parking Pass

None

Open Year-round

Yes

Pros

Free parking. Easy access. Ocean views.

Cons

No potable water. Limited parking.

Trailhead Elevation

675.00 ft (205.74 m)

Highest point

1,268.00 ft (386.49 m)

Features

Historically significant
Big vistas
Wildflowers

Typically multi-day

No

Permit required

No

Location

Nearby Adventures

San Francisco Peninsula + Santa Cruz, California
San Francisco Peninsula + Santa Cruz, California
San Francisco Peninsula + Santa Cruz, California

Nearby Lodging + Camping

San Francisco Peninsula + Santa Cruz, California
Golden Gate National Recreation Area

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