7.2-mile Santa Cruz Mountains Hike

San Francisco Windy Hill Open Space Preserve

Added by Ty Rauber

  • Climb up the Santa Cruz Mountains, through the fog, for an amazing view of the peninsula and Pacific Ocean (fog permitting, had to say it)
  • Get a good sweat going with the 1,400ft elevation gain
  • Dogs are allowed on-leash
  • Duration: 7.2-miles, 3.5 hours

This 7.2-mile loop starts by heading out of the parking lot and onto the Spring Ridge Trail. Head Southeast On Spring Ridge Trail until you connect with Hamms Gulch Trail. When you jump on Hamms Gulch, head southwest for ~3.4 miles as you circle the far end of the OSP. At this point, you will connect with the Lost Trail. Head west on the Lost Trail until it connects with the Anniversary Trail, which will lead you back to Spring Ridge Trail. Once you're back on Spring Ridge, follow it until you hit your car.

The great thing about this hike is the abundance of wildflowers when in season. Out of season, it's a great place to get a longer hike in. Parts of this trail are shared use, so keep an eye for equestrians and bikers.

Also, keep in mind that the wind can really get going on Spring Ridge Trail ("Windy Hill"), so you may want to consider dressing with some warm, lightweight layers.

Pack List

  • Trail shoes
  • Athletic clothing
  • Light jacket
  • Water
  • Snacks
  • Doggie bags
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Please respect the places you find on The Outbound.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More




Skill Level:



Year Round



Dog Friendly
Easy Parking
Handicap Accessible

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How to Get There

7 months ago


This trail takes you through it all. You start out walking through the forest and come out on top of the mountains with a breathtaking view. Definitely worth it!

7 months ago

8 months ago

Nice Trail!

Easy to moderate hiking with gorgeous view from the windy hill summit.

8 months ago

Added by Ty Rauber

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