With 3,300 feet of vertical gain over such rugged terrain, the challenging Kennedy-Limekiln Area Loop is great for serious hikers.
Keep an eye out for coast live oak, bay trees, redwoods, deer, bobcats, and coyotes as well as the peaks of Mt. Thayer and Mt. Umunhum.
Distance: 14.1 mile loop
Elevation change: 3,300′ elevation gain
Hiking time: 9-10 hours
Trail surface: Packed dirt, mostly exposed
Best Season: Year round
Managing agency: Midpeninsula Regional Open Space
Parking lot location: Click here for directions
Overview: To start this 14.1-mile out-and-back hike, take the Kennedy Trail to the Limekiln Trail, then the Priest Rock Trail and back to the Kennedy Trail. Your hard work will be rewarded with panoramic views of the South Bay.
Sierra Azul is one of the largest open space preserves in the Bay Area. The chaparral habitat here is home to a wide variety of local wildlife – so be on the lookout.
Part of this trail follows the route of the Bay Area Ridge Trail, which connects the highest points around the San Francisco Bay for 375 miles. Once complete, it will circumnavigate the entire Bay Area for a total of 550 miles.
POST has protected 14 properties and just over 4,000 acres of what is now 18,000-acre Sierra Azul Open Space Preserve. This preserve is now managed by our partners at the Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District.