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Foothill Trail

Easy/Intermediate
 4.3 (9)

A very popular forest-wonderland trail that passes Big Tree Wayside.


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Map Key

2.2

Miles

3.5

KM

Point to Point

491' 150 m

High

166' 51 m

Low

468' 143 m

Up

264' 81 m

Down

6%

Avg Grade (4°)

28%

Max Grade (16°)

Dogs No Dogs

Features Birding · Views

Family Friendly This trail is chock full of interesting trees and groves. If the going gets too tough, it's easy to turn back.

Description

This stunning old-growth trail invites hikers to explore an enchanting forest landscape watched over by towering giants. The rich green surroundings and easy accessibility make the Foothill Trail one of the most popular choices for visitors.

The trail begins off of the Cathedral Trees Trail near the Elk Prairie Parking Area. From here, it's quite wide and easy to travel (this southern portion is actually part of an ADA-accessible loop). As it heads north, it immediately welcomes hikers into a heavily shaded grove.

Not too far ahead, the trail comes beside a depression that oddly lets more light down to the undergrowth. The stronger sun persists until the Big Tree Wayside where a glorious giant tree delights droves of visitors. At over 300-feet tall, it's a beautiful and imposing example of what nature is capable of.

As the trail continues past the Big Tree Wayside, it soon becomes steeper and more difficult. This second half is characterized by rolling terrain that darts around the valleys and contours as it climbs to the north. Though the trail parallels the road, it's easy to forget about any nearby traffic while enjoying the streaming light and pristine surroundings.

Contacts

Shared By:

Eric Ashley

Trail Ratings

  4.3 from 9 votes

#7223

Overall
  4.3 from 9 votes
5 Star
33%
4 Star
67%
3 Star
0%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%
Trail Rankings

#626

in California

#7,223

Overall
7 Views Last Month
1,307 Since Apr 18, 2016
Easy/Intermediate

38%
0%
63%
0%
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Photos

That's one massive tree! (Big Tree Wayside)
Dec 21, 2016 near Westhav…, CA
Dwarfed by the immense Redwoods of Big Tree Wayside.
Dec 21, 2016 near Westhav…, CA
The massive redwoods of Big Tree Wayside.
Dec 21, 2016 near Westhav…, CA

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Minor Issues 20 days ago See History
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Check-Ins

Sep 22, 2021
Alexander Bulloch
walked to big tree, then circle to cathedral and back
Sep 21, 2021
Scott S
1mi
Jul 6, 2021
Valerie Norton
https://valhikes.blogspot.com/2021/07/prairie-creek-foothill-and-west-ridge.html
Sep 9, 2019
Laurent Trincklin
Jul 16, 2019
Ed Z
Sep 10, 2018
Logan Shaver
Sep 5, 2017
Greg P
Aug 28, 2017
Laura Schwartz
Easy walk with wide trail.