Ancient Oaks Trail
ElevationAscent: 282' 86 m
Descent: -345' -105 m
High: 2,489' 759 m
Low: 2,207' 673 m
GradeAvg Grade: 7% (4°)
Max Grade: 21% (12°)
Popular runs nearby
Vista Verde Skyline Run - Half Marathon
13.6 mi 21.9 km • Loop • 2,352 ft Ascent 716.98 m Ascent
Hostel/Grapevine/Creek Trail Loop
2.4 mi 3.8 km • Loop • 600 ft Ascent 182.97 m Ascent
Hamms Gulch-Spring Ridge Trail Loop
7.7 mi 12.3 km • Out and Back • 1,440 ft Ascent 438.85 m Ascent
Black Mountain via Black Mountain Trail
10.0 mi 16.0 km • Out and Back • 2,383 ft Ascent 726.23 m Ascent
Arastradero Preserve Loop
5.3 mi 8.6 km • Loop • 626 ft Ascent 190.85 m Ascent
Stanford Dish: Ranch Road via Piers Gate
2.3 mi 3.7 km • Out and Back • 295 ft Ascent 89.99 m Ascent
Navigate on-trail with our free app
“A trail that winds through oak forests and hillside meadows where animals feed in the evening.”— David Hitchcock
The shade from the trees provides relief from the sun for roughly half a mile as the dirt trail makes its way through the woods. It's mostly a singletrack trail although it does widen at times. At .75 miles, the trail emerges in a set of fields where deer, turkeys, and other animals common to the preserve can be found feeding in the mornings and evenings. If you turn around, you get views of Mindego Hill, the Santa Cruz Mountains, and the Pacific Ocean in the distance.
As you approach Alpine Road, a small connector trail to a parking pull off for 2-3 cars goes off to the right while the Ancient Oaks Trail turns to the left. If you continue uphill, a connector trail breaks off to the right again that travels .3 miles up to the Ridge Trail. The Ancient Oaks Trail, well marked by signs, continues to climb through the fields until it reaches 1.1 miles, when the trail begins to descend toward the woods.
The trail re-enters the woods at roughly 1.2 miles and immediately meets the junction of the Bo Gimbal Trail, which breaks off to the right and climbs to the Ridge Trail near Borel Hill. The Ancient Oaks Trail continues to descend through the woods, although glimpses of the surrounding hills can be seen through the trees and at a couple of open spaces. At 1.5 miles, the trail descends steeply through a shaded forest until it reaches its junction with the Charquin Trail at 1.7 miles.
From here, you can take a left and descend Charquin Trail until you reach the Mindego Hill Trail, where you take another left and climb back up to the parking area. If you take a right, you climb Charquin Trail until it meets the Ridge Trail, which you can use to join up with several connector trails to retrace your steps back to your vehicle, or explore other parts of the preserve. Your final option is to retrace your steps back to your car.
Run this trail?
We need help with the following missing trail information:
Need to Know, Runner Notes
Is something wrong? Let us know. Have photos to share? Help fellow runners know what's here.
Land Manager: Midpeninsula Regional Open Space