Hike Mt. Sutro Open Space Reserve
San Francisco › Mt. Sutro's Fairy Gates Trail
Added by Julien Bacal
This can be done as a loop with many easy variations. A lush hike hidden in the heart of SF for a quick post-work nature fix.
The Mount Sutro Open Space hike is one of those gems that's just hiding in plain site. Most people live in San Francisco for years without ever knowing this hike even exists - which is totally fine with us. This 1.8 mile loop is an easy, quick way to get back in touch with nature after a long day. As you'll see once you begin making your way towards to top, there are many different paths you can explore This is also a popular trail for mountain bikers in the know, so keep an eye out to avoid collisions.
This hike is walking distance from SF MUNI as well.
- Running shoes
- Light jacket
- Flashlight if you're cutting it close on daylight
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
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Big Fun In Small package
Sutro is great, considering its smack dab in the middle of an urban landscape. Perfect for those who have a busy 9-5 but want to sneak in some outdoor time to bookend their work day. Be sure to watch for cyclists as these are multi use trails. Also a nice bonus is that these woods have very little vagrant presence compared to some other wooded areas of the city.
this is a serious hidden gem in SF! not too many people are aware that there is a full on forest in the city. the staircase on the west side of the preserve is a great way to jump start your heart rate for a nice trail run to the top of mt. sutro. still haven't busted out the MTB on these trails but definitely will sometime.
Love hiking in Sutro Forest! The hike is equally beautiful on both sunny and foggy days. On sunny days, you can see peek-a-boo views of GG Bridge and the ocean. On foggy days, you won't see many panoramic view - but the forest takes on a majestic quality as the trees disappear in the fog. The hike is very dog friendly, but watch out because I have seen coyotes in the forest. And on very foggy days, or after light rain - make sure to wear shoes you don't like, because they will get quite muggy! There are multiple entrances into the forest, but the easiest is around Stanyan and 17th street. It's a residential street, but you'll see a sign with stairs up into the forest. The historic trail is pretty flat if you do not want much elevation gain.
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This is a great find. We saw it on the map it was on the way from Mendocino to our next stop, Napa Valley. So glad we took the time to visit.