Fog-swept Douglas Fir, Redwoods, orchids and madrone trees lead to a unique mountain prairie overlooking the Pacific Ocean.

Salt Point State Park, about 90 miles north of San Francisco, features rugged, windswept coastline and dramatic forests of cypress, pine and redwoods. The Central Trail is a great way to experience much of the inland portion of the park including a unique highland Prairie where elk graze and are hunted by mountain lions.

The Central Trailhead is located in the main park entrance near the Gerstle Campground and proceeds some 1.8 miles up to the Prairie, passing old mining equipment and water storage tanks along the way.

The trail can be connected to the North or South Trails for a loop, eventually leading back to the park entrance. 

Pack List

  • Water
  • Nutrition
  • Season-appropriate attire
  • Map
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RT Distance 3.6 Miles
Elevation Gain 800 Feet
Activities Chillin, Photography, Running, Hiking, Fitness
Skill Level Beginner
Season Year Round
Trail Type Out-and-Back
Adult Beverages
Easy Parking
Family Friendly
Picnic Area


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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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