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Castle Rock Loop

Intermediate
 4.6 (38) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

A beautiful wooded loop with openings for views of the Santa Cruz Mountains.


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Map Key

3.4

Miles

5.4

KM

Loop

3,155' 962 m

High

2,632' 802 m

Low

749' 228 m

Up

756' 230 m

Down

8%

Avg Grade (5°)

17%

Max Grade (10°)

Dogs Unknown

Features Birding · Fall Colors · Views · Waterfall · Wildflowers

Family Friendly This is a pretty simple loop and can be made shorter for smaller children.

Overview

The views are spectacular and really show off the beauty of the Santa Cruz area. This is definitely a great climber's trail with boulders and routes along the way, especially on Castle Rock Trail.

Description

Start on Castle Rock Trail. You'll get to a big climbing spot that is pretty recognizable, and if you go around that, the trail continues until you hit the falls. Some parts of the trail are a bit small, but pretty easy to find. Climb the short hill to get up to Saratoga Gap Trail and take a left.

Follow the Saratoga Gap Trail and be sure to enjoy the amazing views of the Santa Cruz Mountains along the way. Take a right onto the short Interconnector Trail to connect to Ridge Trail on the right and follow this trail back to Saratoga Gap Trail again. Make a left and you'll be headed back to the main parking lot. In this direction, Saratoga Gap Trail has amazing views of the valley.

Contacts

Shared By:

Anina Middleton

Trail Ratings

  4.6 from 38 votes

#186

Overall
  4.6 from 38 votes
5 Star
63%
4 Star
32%
3 Star
5%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%
Recommended Route Rankings

#25

in California

#186

Overall
246 Views Last Month
14,150 Since Dec 21, 2015
Intermediate

3%
0%
88%
0%
9%
0%

Photos

The blue mountains of Santa Cruz!
Jan 22, 2016 near Monte S…, CA
One of many views from the Castle Rock Loop.
Dec 21, 2015 near Monte S…, CA
Beautiful valley view
Nov 11, 2019 near Monte S…, CA
Mossy rocks in Castle Rock State Park.
Dec 31, 2015 near Monte S…, CA
Sunny and surprisingly windless afternoon on a dusty, one-lane trail. Looking south-southeast.
Sep 7, 2019 near Monte S…, CA
Preparing for the hike.
Dec 30, 2015 near Monte S…, CA

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Check-Ins

Feb 16, 2020
Duncan MacCannell
Jan 12, 2020
zhenzhi xu
Dec 12, 2019
Brittany Hood
Oct 25, 2019
pytepaul pytepaul
Oct 12, 2019
James Carr
3.4mi
Jul 12, 2019
Lian Zhu
Jun 22, 2019
Lana S
Great views! 4.3mi — 1h 45m
Jun 2, 2019
Madhav S