Waterfall Trail Hike Information

This hike offers a lovely mix of woods and grassy patches, with an energetic stream winding through it all.

Watch for:

Keep an eye out for raccoons, skunks, and blackberries along the trail. Don't get skunked!


  • Hiking
  • Dogs
  • Horses
  • No Fishing
  • Biking
  • No Camping
  • Not Handicap Accessible
  • No Swimming

About the Waterfall Hike

Start this three-mile out-and-back hike from Skyline Boulevard, take the Meadow Trail to Alpine Road, then Crazy Pete’s Road to the Coal Creek waterfall. The hike has a mix of shade and sun at you go up a 200 feet elevation gain. You can either start the trail at the trailhead directly of off Skyline Boulevard, or from the trailhead at Alpine Road. Head down the path for about half a mile until you reach a gate and an information kiosk with trail maps provided by the Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District. At this point, the paved road becomes a dirt trail.

If you plan on doing this hike after heavy rains, wear good boots and prepare to get a little muddy. Keep left down Crazy Pete’s trail as the path winds through the trees. After just under a mile into the hike, you will cross a small bridge over a waterfall that cascades out of sight down the ridge. Once you’re ready to head back, just retrace your steps back to the parking lot.

Directions to the Waterfall Trail Hike

The parking lot closest to the Coal Creek waterfall trailhead is located off of Skyline Boulevard (Highway 35), right before Heacox Road, about four miles southwest of Old La Honda Road. Look for the Crazy Pete’s road signs.

More about the Coal Creek Open Space Preserve

Throughout the 1980s, POST helped protect approximately 350 acres of Coal Creek Open Space Preserve, now managed by the Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District. This Bay Area waterfall hike is accessible and enjoyable all year, but the best time to see seasonal waterfalls is in the winter.

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