ElevationAscent: 9' 3 m
Descent: -194' -59 m
High: 767' 234 m
Low: 573' 175 m
GradeAvg Grade: 4% (2°)
Max Grade: 8% (4°)
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“A trail through fields of flowers with views of the Santa Cruz Mountains.”— David Hitchcock
Family Friendly A relatively short route through open fields with the opportunity to view wildlife feeding in the evenings.
The trail enters the preserve on a wide gravel road that leads to a power station on the left of the trail. It narrows slightly as it moves deeper into the preserve and comes to an informational kiosk that has maps and activity information. At this point, the Clarkia Trail goes off to the left and descends to Cañada Road while the Sunset Trail continues straight ahead. Shortly after passing the Clarkia Trail, the Serpentine Trail breaks off to the right where a limited view of the San Francisco Bay comes into view. The trail moves its way through the open fields where wildflowers can be seen blooming in the spring. As the trail descends slightly, there appear to be several manmade paths up the surrounding hills, but these trails should not be followed as it damages the fields and ecosystem of the preserve.
The trail passes a small connector trail that leads off to the left and meets up with the Clarkia Trail again. Good views of the interstate and Santa Clara Mountains stretch out before you. Working its way through the fields, the Ridgeview Trail can be seen on the right above the trail. There are some trees and shrubs that provide a little bit of shade. The trail remains wide as it mades continues to descend to the intersection of the Edgewood Trail, which comes into the preserve from the left from Cañada Road.
At this point, you can return to your car by turning around and following the Sunset Trail. If you want to explore further, follow the Edgewood Trail straight ahead until the Ridgeview Trail cuts off to the right. Follow the Ridgeview Trail back to the Serpentine Trail and then back to the Sunset Trail. It's roughly a mile roundtrip, but offers great views and opportunities to see wildlife in the evenings.
Wildflowers can be seen along the trail in the fields, especially in the spring.
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Land Manager: San Mateo County Department of Parks