Hike The Historical Stevens Trail

Hike The Historical Stevens Trail

Stevens Trail, Colfax CA

Activities

Chillin, Fishing, Photography, Mountain Biking, Running, Swimming, Hiking, Diving, Fitness

Skill

Intermediate

Season

Year Round

Added by

Xavier Salgado

Bathrooms
Dog Friendly
Easy Parking
Groups
River
Scenic
Waterfall
Wildflowers
Swimming Hole

Beautiful Wildflowers. Fishing & Swimming. Very well maintained trail. 8 mile out-and-back hike. Elevation gain: 3376 ft.

Best known as one of the most popular hiking and biking trails to the North Fork American River, in part because of the easy access from Colfax. However, this is a remote trail, and hikers are advised to bring plenty of fluids as well as carry a whistle. The entire trail is primarily shaded, passing through oak, douglas fir, and large stands of manzanita. The wildflower displays are rarely matched elsewhere in the area, especially during April and May. Use caution as the trail is hot during the summer months and steep at times with narrow passages. The Stevens trail begins conveniently at a parking area on N. Canyon Way just north of Colfax. After a short walk, the trail intersects an unmarked firebreak road, turn right on the dirt road. Further along the trail meets yet again another firebreak road, veer to the right and look for a metal 'trail' sign a few steps further to the left. A trail sign will direct bikers to the right and hikers left. The trails will eventually rejoin after traversing the rocky outcropping that occurs. Further along the trail is a beautiful cascading waterfall, and shortly thereafter is perhaps the most distinctive landmark on the trail - an immense bed of shale cascading down the mountainside. You can also see the remains of a mine shaft, abandoned long ago. Right above the bed shale, is the Cape Horn section of the first Transcontinental railroad. The original railroad bed was cut into the steep canyon wall, by Chinese laborers suspended on ropes. After about a mile, look for a trail sign pointing to the left. From this point on, the trail enters the steep North Fork American River canyon and traverses the canyon up river. This part of the trail offers beautiful views of the river as well as the Iowa Hill Bridge. The trail will meet the river at Secret Ravine, and although the trail is fairly easy down to the river, take the opportunity to rest and cool off in the cold river before starting the more difficult trip back to the trail head.

Community Photos

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations.

Nearby Lodging

From $120/night

Falling Waters Oasis

Grass Valley, California

From $63/night

Outsite Heavenly

South Lake Tahoe, California

From $130/night

The Vineyard

Acampo, California

Reviews

Leave a Review

Overall rating: 

Challenging but Fun!

Such a beautiful hike. Hot in the summer so start early. In early Spring 2017 after a wet winter the waterfall section you have to cross was impassable, haven't been out again since that last time.

Go Early!

This hike is absolutely beautiful! Went this morning (saturday of memorial day weekend) and was the first car in the lot (7:00am). My pup and I had the whole trail down to ourselves! The morning light with the hills and river is stunning. As others have mentioned, definitely bring plenty of water, especially if going mid-day (or bring a water filter since you'll be able to filter at the river). I was also pleasantly surprised how clean and free of litter this trail is given its popularity! Keep up the good LNT work everyone!!

Great Hike!

Really pretty water streams along the way to the river. Good views and dog friendly!!

Activities

Chillin, Fishing, Photography, Mountain Biking, Running, Swimming, Hiking, Diving, Fitness

Skill

Intermediate

Season

Year Round

Added by

Xavier Salgado

Nearby Adventures

Adventure

Hike to the Jumping Rock on the Bear River

Adventure

Photograph a Sunset on Wolf Mountain

Adventure

Explore Sugar Pine Reservoir

Adventure

Take a Family Ride

More Nearby Adventures

Related Stories

how-to

Experience Van Life Without Cashing In Your 401k!

Hit the road and sleep in comfort on your next adventure without breaking the bank!

travel

10 Reasons Why Guides Make Adventures Better

Let the experts lead the way.

skiing

An Introduction To Ski Touring

Enjoy the peace and quiet of the backcountry and untracked powder.

More Stories