Eagle View Trail: Sunol Regional Wilderness

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The Hike

If you want to feel like you’re trekking through The Shire from Lord of the Rings, then I cannot recommend this hike enough. The entire time you are surrounded by so much green grass that you will swear you’re in Ireland (note: this might not be true if it hasn’t rained within a few weeks).

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Frodo and Sam would feel quite at home here

Eagle View Trail has almost immediately become one of my favorite hikes in the Bay Area. During our four hours on the trail we saw a surprising variety of landscapes, topped off with a breathtaking view at the end.

In the beginning of the hike, you get to enjoy the rolling green foothills from the valley below while crossing over a small stream filled with clay. It has rained a bit more this year than last so it was great to see water out in nature.

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After about a mile of hiking, we stumbled on to this giant rock formation that looked as though it was dropped out of the sky! In the back (not pictured) there were some people with ropes repelling down the sides.

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Almost immediately after was a small forrest straight from a fairytale.

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This was the last flat bit of land for a while. Some parts of the trail were a bit steep and even involve some steps, but the view at the top was worth all of the sweat.

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Beautiful views with the reservoir in the distance

See! They even provide a bench to catch your breath on! We were extremely lucky that day and were even able to catch a glimpse of the bay in the background. If you look closely at the below picture, you can see it in the distance.

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There are endless photo opportunities on this hike. If you don’t have a hiking partner along to take your picture then bring your selfie stick!

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Jon practicing his yoga with a view

A little background on the picture below (of me on top of that rock): I am extremely scared of climbing things. I am not sure when it happened because as a kid I used to scramble over rocks in Yosemite with my adventurous buddy, Katelyn, all the time. At one point, however, I lost that sense of excitement and replaced it with ridiculous, stiffening fear. One of my goals this year is to try and conquer this fear. Maybe someday there will be a picture of me on top of a rock that’s taller than 8-10 feet high… 🙂

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Victory!

The rest of the hike from here is downhill. If you go on a day when it has rained recently (or while it is raining or drizzling, like the day we went) then it is going to be extremely muddy from here on out. I mean extremely muddy:

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So excited to clean this!

Near the end of the trip we had the privilege of getting up close and personal with some cows. Unfortunately, they did not share our enthusiasm and instead gave us the evil eye.

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This one in the picture below followed us to the gate that it (thankfully) could not get over. It started running at us at one point. I honestly never thought I would ever be afraid of a cow! How can I be such a coward? (Sorry for the bad pun, I’ll stop milking it).

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Mad cow

Speaking of wildlife, we also caught a glimpse of a herd of deer and a kettle of hawks (I looked it up! That’s the proper way to refer to a group of them! Who knew?).

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Hard to see, but there are two hawks hunting and one Jon taking a picture

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The Stats

This hike is about 5.5-6 miles and is located in the Sunol Regional Wilderness. There is a $5 parking fee at the gate and please note that they only take cash. Park gates close at 5pm. Beware of rattlesnakes in hotter months.

For more information on the hike, including a map and more detailed hiking instructions, please visit this page on EveryTrail.

Conclusion

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This hike gets an A+ in my book. It has diverse terrain, gorgeous views, entertaining wildlife, and is moderately difficult but not too challenging. I would definitely recommend the Eagle View Trail loop, especially after it rains so you can enjoy the green!

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