Purisma Creek Redwoods Hiking Trail

Purisima Creek Redwoods Trail

Half Moon Bay Redwoods Hike: Half Moon Bay is famous for its legendary Mavericks surf break, but it’s also home to some incredible hiking trails! Located only a 15-minute drive from the famous surf break and situated deep in the heart of redwoods, The Purisima Creek Redwoods Open Preserve features over 4,200 acres of protected land and 24 miles of developed trails and fire roads. Established by a $2 million gift from the Save-the-Redwood League, Purisima Creek Redwoods Preserve is well maintained and a hiker’s delight!

The preserve features several trails to explore that are suitable for families as well as active trail runners. For this hike, the Go Hike It team completed the 6-mile Purisima Creek Trail to Grabtown Gulch Trail loop. It’s approximately 6 miles and takes 2.5-3 hours to complete.

Trail Loop Overview: The trails starts at the Purisima Creek Trail and continues for approximately 1.1 miles to Whittemore Gulch Trail. Turn right onto Grabtown Gulch Trail and hike up the hill for 1.51 miles. The hill has a moderate incline. Make a right at Borden Hatch Mill Trail and continue down for 2.39 miles until you reach Purisima Creek Trail.

Throughout the hike, you’ll be surrounded by countless redwoods and even have the opportunity to see local wildlife, including the area’s famous banana slug!

Tip: The parking area is fairly small. There is also street parking available. Arrive early to find a good parking spot.

Estimated Time: 3 hours

Total Distance: 6 miles

Map & Directions

Trail Pictures

Total Distance (miles)

The Purisima Creek Preserve features over 4,750 protected acres and 24 miles of trails.

Total Estimated Time (hour)

Redwoods are the tallest trees in the world and can grow up to 360 feet!

Purisima Creek Redwoods Photo Gallery

(click on image to rotate through image/s) 

When to Go

Year-Round: Purisima Creek Redwood Preserve is open year-round. During the winter months, it may be in the low 30s, so bring plenty of warm clothes and adequate gear. During the summer months the trail is more popular with the area locals and tourists.

Dog Friendly

No, dogs are not allowed in the preserve area. Only service dogs are permitted.

Purisima Creek Redwoods Trail Map

Purisima Creek Redwoods Trail Directions

Address for GPS: Higgins Canyon Rd & Purisima Creek Road, Half Moon Bay, CA 94019

Why We Liked It

We loved being surrounded by the towering redwoods and exploring the open preserve! Throughout this Half Moon Bay hike, only saw a handful of other hikers, creating an intimate experience in the heart of the protected nature. We were also fortunate to see over 35 banana slugs!

The coastal hikes of Half Moon Bay are very popular and provide excellent ocean views. If you want to surround yourself in the redwoods, explore miles and miles of trails and escape some of the area’s tourists, this hike is for you!



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