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Hawk Ridge Trail

Easy
 4.0 (1)

A downhill trail that drops below the Ridge Trail and provides views of the surrounding hills and the Pacific Ocean.


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Map Key

0.6

Miles

1.0

KM

Point to Point

2,363' 720 m

High

2,102' 641 m

Low

0' 0 m

Up

261' 79 m

Down

8%

Avg Grade (5°)

14%

Max Grade (8°)

Dogs No Dogs

Features Views · Wildlife

The preserve is open year round from dawn until half an hour after sunset.

Description

The Hawk Ridge Trail can be accessed via the Ridge Trail or the Alder Spring Trail (if you want to hike uphill) in the Russian Ridge Open Space Preserve. The trail leaves an intersection of the Ridge Trail, Hawk Trail, and a small connector trail that leads to the boundary of the preserve. The trail begins to descend along a singletrack gravel trail through some tall grass and small brush.

The gravel quickly transforms into dirt as the singletrack trail turns to the right and continues its descent of the hillside. Above you to the left is the Ridge Trail, while the hillside drops off to the right and offers sweep views of the Santa Cruz Mountains, Pacific Ocean, and the rest of Russian Ridge Preserve, including Mindego Hill. The views are the best part of this hike, so make sure to take them in as you proceed down the trail. It descends gently as it winds its way along the hillside. Animals can be seen feeding in the fields and soaring above them.

As the trail approaches the junction withe the Alder Spring Trail, you pass by rock formations that stick out of the hillside thanks to erosion. The trail finally arrives that the junction with Alder Spring Trail. If you turn to the right, the Alder Spring Trail runs for roughly .4 miles to a gate and the edge of the preserve. If you go to the left, the trail makes its way to the Charquin Trail. You can use the other trails in the preserve to create a loop and get back to your car or follow the trail back up the hill to where you started and explore other areas.

Flora & Fauna

The trail descends along the hill line through meadows. Deer, turkeys, coyotes, bobcats, hawks, turkey vultures, and other species of birds can be seen along the trail, especially in the early morning or evening.

Contacts

Shared By:

David Hitchcock

Trail Ratings

  4.0 from 1 vote

#14796

Overall
  4.0 from 1 vote
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Trail Rankings

#1,578

in California

#14,796

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5 Views Last Month
192 Since Jan 29, 2017
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Photos

The hills surrounding the Russian Ridge Preserve, and the Pacific Ocean, can be seen off in the distance.
Feb 1, 2017 near La Honda, CA
While most of the preserve is made up of fields and forests, there are a few rock formations that stand out.
Feb 1, 2017 near La Honda, CA
The trail makes its way down the hillside with views of the mountains and the ocean off to the right of the trail.
Jan 30, 2017 near La Honda, CA

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Check-Ins

Jan 29, 2017
David Hitchcock
Hiked along the ridge in order to connect Ridge Trail with the Ancient Oaks Trail.