This weekend, my friend and I took a trip to Stinson Beach to hike the scenic seven-mile Dipsea Trail. This trail is one of San Francisco’s most difficult hikes with 688 steps in the first mile and a cumulative 2,000 feet in elevation gain. By the end of the hike, your thighs will burn and you will be ready to grab some food at Parkside Snack Bar.
Dispea Trail is open year round and can be hiked either direction. Personally, I chose to start at Stinson Beach because the parking is free and it’s easier to hike upwards at the beginning than at the end. Along the hike, you’ll see thick redwood forests, clearings with rolling hills, and the occasional mile marker. My favorite parts of the hike were the steep staircases, beautiful bridges, and the wooden ladder towards the end of the trail.
If you go to Dipsea Trail, make sure to bring plenty of water and sunscreen as it can get very hot and sunny. Here’s a photo of my friend and I at the top of the trail. Since he is a college athlete, I was definitely fighting to match his pace at the end of the hike! Despite the heat and incline, we both had a great time and want to explore more trails in Mill Valley soon.
After our hike, we grabbed burgers and smoothies from Parkside Snack Bar and sat on the beach to eat. It was a gorgeous day with plenty of sun. Given our seven mile trek, it was nice to relax for an hour before making the drive home. I’m definitely glad that we parked at the beach before hiking as we had plenty of time to hike, check out local restaurants, and lay in the sand.
In one day, I was able to enjoy Muir Woods’ redwood trees and burgers on the beach. If you have been or want to go to Dipsea Trail, let me know what you think of the hike in the comments below!