National Parks / Natural World

Big Basin Redwoods State Park Boulder Creek

Where is it at?

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Big Basin Redwoods State Park
21600 Big Basin Way
Boulder Creek
CA
95006
Tel: 831 338 8860

Directions

The park is about 65 miles south of San Francisco. From Santa Cruz travel approx 25 miles northwest via Highways 9 and 236 to reach Park Headquarters. Park Headquarters is 9 miles north of the town of Boulder Creek on State Hwy 236. All roads into Big Basin are curvy. The Rancho Del Oso coastal unit of Big Basin is accessible on State Route 1, about 20 miles north of the city of Santa Cruz.

Where are we going today?

Big Basin Redwoods State Park stretches from sea level to over 2000ft above and terrain ranges from almost tropical canyons and raging waterfalls to sparse and almost arid slopes. There's certainly scope for some terrific exploration here, with natural wildlife and mini beasts in abundance.

You really need to stop at park headquarters for guidance before anything else, especially if you're planning on doing a hike or bike trail with kids: there are over 80 miles worth to choose from and as indicated even parallel routes can vary tremendously.

There are equestrian trails as well as the hike and bike, plus a smattering of camping oportunities.

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How much does it cost?

  • AdultsFree!
LAST UPDATED 2013

When can we go?

Year round daylight access with certain activities discouraged in certain weather conditions.

Any Top Tips?

It's an amplifying environment: pack for weather x 10!.

What people are saying?

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    It's a great park for a day hike. The headquarters area is the busiest, however there are other places you can start. Highway 1 at Waddell Beach is one such place, also there's access from Ano Nuevo State Park on Whitehouse Canyon Road. China Grade Road offers some other out of the way starting points. There's also Little Basin Road where you can go up to Eagle Rock on Empire Grade (but no signs on that trail anywhere).

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    Beautiful shaded, serene trails that are lined with stunning redwoods. The park is also filled with great facilities.

    The campgrounds being so crowded, with large groups and tons of screaming kids was the only negative. The sites and facilities are quite nice, but the constant noise made it something other than the serene experience I was looking for.

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    We went hiking here one day. The Berry Creek trail is about 11 miles of pure beauty with two gorgeous waterfalls to see. Not looking to do 11+ miles, you can always hike to the first waterfall, about 3.5 miles in, so a total of 7 miles round trip with little elevation change.

    Even though we didn't camp there, we check out the camp sites. They book about 6 months in advance. They are definitely secluded from everything , except each other. The campsites are almost on top of each other. When nature calls out in the wild, there is a port-a-potty for...Read More

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    not positive..but i saw two guys that worked there having sex.....not going back. the visual will never go away...disgusting!!
    why do those people do that?!! absolutely. disgusted with park service employees

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    Big Basin Redwoods State Park is a super nice park with practically an endless number of trails. We came here back in July and spent about two and a half hours here. Of course because this place has the word 'big' in its name for a reason and I love nature, I could spend a month living here! I don't think it's even possible for even if you camp out here for a week could you see everything. The weather here is truly fantastic and makes you want to stay outdoors for as long as possible. There are so many trails to choose from and of course, there...Read More

Submit a review

by Amy Higgins

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We went hiking here one day. The Berry Creek trail is about 11 miles of pure beauty with two gorgeous waterfalls to see. Not looking to do 11+ miles, you can always hike to the first waterfall, about 3.5 miles in, so a total of 7 miles round trip with little elevation change.

Even though we didn't camp there, we check out the camp sites. They book about 6 months in advance. They are definitely secluded from everything , except each other. The campsites are almost on top of each other. When nature calls out in the wild, there is a port-a-potty for campers to use.

by Michael Giskin

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Big Basin Redwoods State Park is a super nice park with practically an endless number of trails. We came here back in July and spent about two and a half hours here. Of course because this place has the word 'big' in its name for a reason and I love nature, I could spend a month living here! I don't think it's even possible for even if you camp out here for a week could you see everything. The weather here is truly fantastic and makes you want to stay outdoors for as long as possible. There are so many trails to choose from and of course, there are trails that are flat and others that are steep and continuously uphill. Thankfully, there were plenty of park rangers to help answer any questions and help you pick the best route for your hike based on length and difficulty. Unfortunately when we were here back in July there was a drought so no waterfall action. The gift shop here was good too. I got a Bigfoot magnet and a redwood tree magnet. Speaking of redwood trees we saw of course hundreds of them and some were even hollow so you could stand inside of them. Just in case you were wondering, no I did not encounter any Bigfoot. :( Anyway, I must say though that because I had also been to Muir Woods and Henry Cowell Redwoods State Park I think overall I enjoyed Henry Cowell the most and Big Basin and Muir Woods are at a tie for second place.

The Weather

Tuesday

Conditions: Clear
Temp: 84° F / 29° C
Humidity: 30 %
Wind: NW - 6 MPH

Wednesday

Conditions: Clear
Temp: 72° F / 22° C
Humidity: 64 %
Wind: SW - 6 MPH

Thursday

Conditions: Clear
Temp: 68° F / 20° C
Humidity: 69 %
Wind: NW - 7 MPH

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