San Francisco: Tolman Peak Loop

Climb to the site of a legendary plane crash on this 5.5-mile loop through the rolling hills of Dry Creek Pioneer Regional Park.
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Climb to the site of a legendary plane crash on this 5.5-mile loop through the rolling hills of Dry Creek Pioneer Regional Park.

--Mapped by Dave Miller

Trail Facts

  • Distance: 6.2

Waypoints

Salamander on trail

Location: 37.610279083252, -122.014602661133

©Dave Miller

Trailhead

Location: 37.611083984375, -122.017372131348

©Dave Miller

Panorama Tolman Peak

Location: 37.6135444641113, -121.991874694824

©Dave Miller

Bench shrouded in mist

Location: 37.6104125976562, -121.996032714844

©Dave Miller

Sunlight filters through

Location: 37.6087112426758, -122.010665893555

A serene moment in Pioneer Regional Park. ©Dave Miller

Salamander on trail

Location: 37.610279083252, -122.014602661133

©Dave Miller

Trailhead

Location: 37.611083984375, -122.017372131348

©Dave Miller

Panorama Tolman Peak

Location: 37.6135444641113, -121.991874694824

©Dave Miller

Bench shrouded in mist

Location: 37.6104125976562, -121.996032714844

©Dave Miller

TPK001

Location: 37.6108512878418, -122.017799377441

R @ Y on High Ridge Loop Trail; then watch for a hairpin turn S above the heavily wooded drainage

TPK002

Location: 37.6095695495606, -122.01180267334

R onto poorly marked Tolman Peak Trail, then pass small pond and hillside of giant oaks

TPK003

Location: 37.6071014404297, -122.003196716309

Continue straight @ gate on trail-cum-cattle highway (often muddy)

TPK004

Location: 37.6082611083984, -121.999900817871

First of several creek crossings; orange-bellied newts skitter across trail

TPK005

Location: 37.6073417663574, -121.998397827148

L onto Tolman Peak Trail; climb ahead

TPK006

Location: 37.6097793579102, -121.995903015137

Switchback veers L; watch for red-tailed hawks drifting across mosaic of SF's South Bay and Santa Cruz Mtns. in W

TPK007

Location: 37.6138916015625, -121.992202758789

Tolman Peak (970 ft.): Site of CA's fifth worst aviation crash when a Douglas DC-6B hit the peak and cartwheeled into Dry Gulch Canyon in 1951; continue R @ Y to descend on South Fork Trail

TPK008

Location: 37.6116790771484, -121.988700866699

Sharp R under oaks; descend on old road that transitions into a footpath along the creekbed

TPK009

Location: 37.608829498291, -121.98860168457

Clearing next to creek; good break spot

TPK010

Location: 37.6065101623535, -121.989799499512

R onto South Fork Trail; continue W .6 mi. along creek to WPT 5; retrace steps to car