Big Basin: Biggest Stand of Old Growth Redwoods
First California State Park, Towering Redwoods, Hiking, Camping, Waterfalls and Backpacking
Big Basin Redwoods State Park is located in the beautiful Santa Cruz Mountains among the awe-inspiring California Redwoods. The park has over 80 miles of trails on 18,000 acres; including the most famous 30-mile Skyline-to-the-Sea Trail. This famous trail leads from the crest of the Santa Cruz Mountains to the Pacific Ocean. This is easily some of the most spectacular hiking in the Santa Cruz Mountains.
Big Basin is home to the biggest stand of old-growth redwood south of the Golden Gate, four waterfalls, a towering 329-foot tree and the best-tasting water in the county (from the Andrew P. Hill fountain on the Redwood Trail).
Tent Cabin Lodging at Big Basin
Our Tent Cabins feature convenience and comfort in a beautiful outdoor setting. Designated the first State Park in 1902, Big Basin enjoys warm summer weather and is open year-round for camping, hiking, backpacking, and picnicking.
“What a beautiful area to camp! The redwoods are breathtaking. Clean grounds, not too crowded, clean bathrooms made for a wonderful weekend of exploring. Close to town for supplies & restaurants. Many trails to choose from in the area for the beginners and advanced hikers. The beach is only a 20 minute drive from it & the ride up Highway 1 was breathtaking and only 2 hours round trip. Definitely would camp here again.” Trip Advisor, Jannbob
Be sure and pick up a map at park headquarters before your hike and take a look at the multimedia kiosk in the Sempervirens Room (next to park headquarters). There you will find great information, photos, and video of some of the most popular trails.
Some of these trails link Big Basin to Castle Rock State Park and the eastern reaches of the Santa Cruz range. The Skyline to the Sea Trail threads its way through the park along Waddell Creek to the beach and adjacent Theodore J. Hoover Natural Preserve, a freshwater marsh.
Surprising Number of Forest Waterfalls
The park has a surprising number of waterfalls, a wide variety of environments (from lush canyon bottoms to sparse chaparral-covered slopes, many animals (deer, raccoons, an occasional bobcat) and lots of bird life – including Steller’s jays, egrets, herons and California woodpeckers.
The Big Basin Camp Store and Gift Shop has an excellent selection of gifts, apparel, and souvenirs as well as camping supplies, groceries, beer and wine, and ice and wood for campfires. Our freshly brewed espresso bar is open daily. Soft drinks, sandwiches to go and snacks make your picnic a snap.