La Honda Creek Open Space Preserve near Redwood City, San Mateo County

Hike Date: 10:40 am, Wednesday, June 21, 2017
3.3 miles, 1.5 hours, 400 feet

View at the Vista Point “The panoramic view of the seemingly never-ending valleys leading to the coast is spectacular. On a clear day, visibility extends to the ocean.” (text source: mrosd)


  • Grasslands
  • Panoramic views
  • Redwood and Douglas fir forest (Old growth redwood called the “Big Tree”)
  • Vista Point
  • Wildlife – flora and fauna

About the Hike

One needs a permit to visit this preserve, and that’s why I decided to go for Open Space’s docent-led hike (Explorer Hike: Forest, Meadows, and Views). The docents for the day were Dennis Smith, Lynn Jackson, and Kate Gudmundson. In all, there were ten hikers.

The pace was rather leisurely and we stopped often, listening about the history of the preserve and sharing stories. The docents helped to identify a lot of wildflowers and plants. At the vista point, we witnessed vast expanses of rolling hills. The docents even spotted the Black Mountain. On the way back, we stopped for lunch at a shaded place with a lot of tree stumps. This is the only open space preserve I have visited till now that is not developed and does not have any restrooms.

  1. Parking Lot: There is no designated parking lot. We parked on the side of a narrow road inside a gated premise. The docents keep the key to the gate. There is no cellular reception inside the preserve.
  2. Parking Fee: None
  3. Restroom: None
  4. Trailhead: None, no trail markers
  5. Exposure: Equal parts exposed and shade
  6. Route: No named trails
  7. Route Map:
  8. Terrain Profile:

Hike Stats

  1. Distance: 3.3 miles
  2. Time: 2 hours 45 minutes (Moving Time: 1 hour 25 minutes)
  3. Avg Moving Pace: 26 min/mi
  4. Elevation Gain: 400 feet
  5. Elevation Profile:


La Honda Creek Preserve

The Trail

The Big Tree

The Big Tree

One of the Homes Inside the Preserve

One of the Homes Inside the Preserve

Open Grassland

Open Grassland

Panoramic View

Panoramic View from the Vista Point

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