Author Archives: Andrew Wojtanik

Lafayette Ridge Trail to Russell Peak (Briones Regional Park, CA)

The East Bay’s Briones Regional Park is a hiker’s paradise, with dozens of interlocking trails traversing a scenic stretch of hills between the suburban centers of Lafayette, Orinda, and Pleasant Hill. Lafayette Ridge—a lengthy spine that stretches southeast from the … Continue reading

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Ridge Top – Indian Creek Trail Loop (Shell Ridge Open Space, CA)

Winter and early spring is far and away the best time of year to hike in the East Bay, when temperatures are good and the rolling hillscapes—typically brown, dusty, and dry in summer—are lush and verdant. The jade-colored hues in … Continue reading

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Buckeye – Cruikshank – Salmon Creek Trail Loop (Silver Peak Wilderness, CA)

The Silver Peak Wilderness covers 31,555 acres of the Santa Lucia Range along the central coast of California between Monterey and Cambria. Hikers can explore the heart of the wilderness area by combining the Buckeye, Cruikshank, and Salmon Creek Trails … Continue reading

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Miner’s Ridge – James Irvine Trail Loop, including Gold Bluffs Beach and Fern Canyon (Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park, CA)

If ever there was a premier, unforgettable hike in northern California’s Redwood National Park, this is it. The Miner’s Ridge – James Irvine Trail Loop combines long stretches of spectacular redwood groves with a brief jaunt along the Pacific Ocean … Continue reading

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Natural Bridges (Samuel H. Boardman State Scenic Corridor, OR)

As if the secret beaches, spectacular cliffside vistas, and crashing waves of the Pacific Ocean were not enough, Samuel H. Boardman State Scenic Corridor on the southern Oregon coast also boasts a number of natural bridges—iconic archways carved by the … Continue reading

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Indian Sands Loop (Samuel H. Boardman State Scenic Corridor, OR)

The Indian Sands area, situated near the middle of Samuel H. Boardman State Scenic Corridor, is a collection of crisp, windswept dunes, towering headlands, and thundering coves along the southern Oregon coast. Starting and ending at the Indian Sands Trailhead … Continue reading

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Thunder Rock Cove Loop (Samuel H. Boardman State Scenic Corridor, OR)

Southwest Oregon’s Samuel H. Boardman State Scenic Corridor features some of the finest stretches of shoreline on the Pacific coast of the United States, and the short-but-spectacular Thunder Rock Cove Loop traverses one of its most picturesque pockets. The brief … Continue reading

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Cape Ferrelo Loop (Samuel H. Boardman State Scenic Corridor, OR)

For 296 miles, the restless Pacific Ocean laps up against the Oregon Coast, producing chilly beaches, windswept rock outcrops, and imposing sea stacks. While some more peaceful, wide-open beaches may be found further south in California, the word that best … Continue reading

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Boy Scout Tree Trail to Fern Falls (Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park, CA)

Together with nearby Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park, northern California’s Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park contains arguably the most spectacular groves of coast redwoods in the world. Nearly the entire park, bounded by the Smith River to the north and … Continue reading

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Piestewa Peak (Phoenix Mountains Preserve, AZ)

Piestewa Peak (2,608’) is the second-highest summit in the Phoenix Mountains, a smattering of cactus-covered peaks in the heart of Arizona’s largest metropolis. Situated inside the Phoenix city limits, Piestewa Peak is extremely popular, but the panoramic views across nearly … Continue reading

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