Kenwood, CA: Northern California Chapter, Sugarloaf/ Bald Mountain Hike

Apr 27, 2024 9:30PM—3:00PM


Robert Ferguson Observatory parking lot in Sugarloaf Ridge State Park at 2605 Adobe Canyon Road in Kenwood, CA.

Event Contact Guy Joaquin | Email


Leaving for the Camino soon? Join us at Sugarloaf Ridge State Park to train for crossing the Pyrenees while enjoying the beauty of Wine Country! The park boasts some of the best views in the Bay Area from the top of Bald Mountain and features over 25 miles of trails, campsites, and the Robert Ferguson Observatory. This hike offers trails with thrilling views of both Sonoma and Napa Valleys, extending to Mt. Diablo, Mt. Tam, San Francisco, and beyond.

We’ll be starting together as a group, but offering two route options, each led by experienced Sonoma County chapter members. Two groups will separate after 1.8 miles, meet up on the summit of Bald Mountain, and descend together back to the starting location to enjoy a picnic potluck.

Schedule: Meet us at 9:30 AM at the Robert Ferguson Observatory parking lot (Lower Bald Mountain trailhead) about a half-mile past the park visitor center. Entry fee is $10 ($8 Senior) per vehicle (cash or credit). Restrooms (portable toilets) are available in the parking lot only. We’ll break for lunch during the hike and expect to arrive back at the parking lot by 3:00 PM. Cancelled by severe weather.

Level of Difficulty: Both routes are difficult. To ensure an enjoyable event for all, please have recent and comparable hiking experience. Several 6 to 7-mile hikes with rigorous climbs should set you up for success.

  • Hike A: This is a moderately challenging hike due to steep elevation gains totaling 1,600 feet and a total distance of 6.7 miles with a 2-mile steady ascent to the Bald Mountain summit.
  • Hike B: This is a challenging hike, totaling 9.23 miles with a total elevation gain of 2,101 feet, often on single track and uneven trails, some fire roads. This hike also ascends Bald Mountain. Hiking poles recommended for unstable rocky trails.

Advance online registration is required. Click the “Register” button to sign up. Because space is limited, we ask that you register if/when you are certain you can attend. Thank you!

Cancellation: Please email us at so we can offer your space to someone else.

Getting There: The park is located at 2605 Adobe Canyon Road in Kenwood.

  • From Locations South: Take US-101 N, CA-37 E and CA-121 N to Arnold Drive in Sonoma County. Continue on Arnold Drive to Fetters Hot Springs-Agua Caliente. At the traffic circle, take the first exit onto Agua Caliente Road. Turn left onto CA-12 W. Turn right onto Adobe Canyon Road.
  • From Santa Rosa: Take CA-12 E towards Sonoma. Turn left onto Adobe Canyon Road.
    Carpooling: On the registration form is a link to an online “Carpool Bulletin Board” for participants to post a message if they need a ride or can give one.

What to Bring: A bag lunch, snacks, water and rain gear, if weather calls for it. Layered clothing is recommended (e.g., beanie, gloves, puffy jacket) as it is often cold and windy at the top of Bald Mountain. Good hiking boots as the trails may be wet and there are several creek crossings. Hiking poles are highly recommended.

Post-Hike Picnic: After the hike, you’re invited to rest your feet and join us for a potluck gathering. We’ll meet in the picnic area next to the parking lot. Feel free to bring your favorite food or refreshment to share. We’ll have coolers available in the cars to keep food and beverages cold during the hike. There’s limited seating so bring your own camping chairs, if possible.

Leaders: Kerin McTaggart, Mary-Rita Williamson, Lorie Florence, and Martin Peña

The Ruff Stuff: For insurance purposes, we are unable to welcome dogs, except service animals, at our events.