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Little Yosemite Valley in Sunol CA
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Dan Magdoff
(highsierraguy) - F

Locale: Northern California
Little Yosemite Valley in Sunol CA on 10/05/2010 00:41:11 MDT Print View

Hey everyone!
SO I have heard people talk about little Yosemite valley in Sunol as a great weekend backpacking spot for the bay area. But after doing some research online it seems like its only a short 3 mile loop. Is there more to this trail/ area that I am not reading about?

Also...I have heard a lot of great things about Henry Coe State park as a good bay area spot. But that place is HUGE! Any tips on spots to go there?

Thoughts? comments? ideas?

Thanks everyone!!

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Little Yosemite Valley in Sunol CA on 10/05/2010 01:10:33 MDT Print View

Dan, Little Yosemite in Sunol Park is a short dayhike from park headquarters. It is not much of a destination except if you had some complete beginners. Besides, during the middle of the day, it is not a wilderness experience.

You can backpack from there on over the top past Rose Peak in the direction of Del Valle.

Coe is OK, if you like large. Dayhikers will cover about half of that park.


Elizabeth Tracy
(mariposa) - M

Locale: Outside
Bay Area backpacking on 10/05/2010 11:40:12 MDT Print View

I live in the Bay Area, but rarely backpack here, because I've been kind of disappointed at the offerings. I have a personal Top Fifteen list of most beautiful hikes in the Bay Area; I think only one of those trails has any backcountry campgrounds. Thus, I Dayhike.

Sunol, including Little Yosemite, is okay but is nothing to write home about. It's a lot prettier in April-early May, when it's lush and the wildflowers are out.

Point Reyes can be gorgeous; as long as you don't mind potential fog, the lack of solitude, and being hounded at your campsite by sixteen hungry raccoons.

The very best I've found is that backcountry campground in Big Basin, near the three waterfalls. I think it's called "Sunset." The campground is not itself extraordinary; but the hike there and back is. Do it as a loop. ~12-13 miles total.

I'd be curious if others here have uncovered any Bay Area backcountry trips that are really nice.

I suspect most of them would be found on the Peninsula. For instance, Butano State Park is nice, and there is a site about 5 miles in that I've never checked out.

- Elizabeth

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Bay Area backpacking on 10/05/2010 13:20:08 MDT Print View

Between Rose Peak and Del Valle, you can find Murietta Falls. That just happens to be the tallest waterfall in the Bay Area. The trick is that it is intermittent, so it flows only for the week after a big winter rain storm.


Justin Carter
(orangebananas) - F

Locale: San Francisco East Bay
Little Yosemite on 10/05/2010 16:36:00 MDT Print View

I've been here a few times with some newbies. It's an easy hike into the backpack camps, and nice in spring because of the flowers. It's too hot during summer unless there is enough water flowing to take a dip in the creek. I prefer Del Valle and hiking west through the Ohlone Wilderness.