Skip to main content

11 of The Best Hikes Near Sacramento to Trek Now
Health & Fitness

11 of The Best Hikes Near Sacramento to Trek Now

Lace up your boots and grab a nature-appreciating buddy, the best hikes near Sacramento are at your disposal.

Share

5 min read

December 17, 2021

Sacramento is surrounded by beautiful nature all around. And knowing that you’re minutes away from exploring flowing rivers, verdant valleys, and gorgeous gardens makes us want to discover the ins and outs of the area even more. Ranging from easy to moderate in difficulty and a maximum of an hour drive away from Sactown, these hikes near Sacramento are every wanderer’s dreams come true. Lace up your boots and grab a nature-appreciating buddy, the best hikes near Sacramento are at your disposal and much, much prettier than you could ever anticipate.

Fun Hiking Trails Near Sacramento 

The beauty of hiking, of course, is disconnecting from the internet, work, and your normal day-to-day life.

1. Jensen Botanical Garden

Location: Charles Jensen Botanical Park, Carmichael
Length: 0.5 mile
Difficulty: Easy
Route: Out and back
Dogs allowed: On leash

You’ll find the gorgeous Jensen Botanical Garden by driving a mere 20 minutes away from Sacramento. A hidden gem that’s lightly trafficked most of the time, this beautiful hiking spot near Sacramento is the perfect easy escape into nature. While the entirety of the trail is only half a mile long, we guarantee that you’re going to circle it once or twice more before you decide to part ways with this beauty. 

Carry as little as possible, but choose that little with care. Look deep into nature and you will understand everything better.

2. Middle Fork American River Quarry Trail

Location: Auburn State Recreation Area, Auburn
Length: 10.8 miles
Difficulty: Moderate
Route: Out and back
Dogs allowed: On leash

The Middle Fork American River Quarry Trail is perhaps the most scenic corridor in Auburn’s nature. Following the path of a historic railway that used to carry limestone, this hike near Sacramento allows you to enjoy the natural beauty of the American River Canyon, see the plants and animals in the current environment, and learn about the mining history of the region. All in all, it’s one of the most fun hiking trails near Sacramento.

Returning home is the most difficult part of long-distance hiking; you have grown outside the puzzle and your piece no longer fits.

3. Darrington Trail

Location: Folsom Lake State Recreation Area, Folsom
Length: 15.7 miles
Difficulty: Moderate
Route: Out and back
Dogs allowed: Yes

Popular among hikers and mountain bikers, the Darrington Trail is a feast for the eyes. You’ll go for the killer exercise and fall in love with the flora and fauna as you uncover mile after mile of one of the best hikes near Sacramento. The length of this trail shouldn't be a worry either—completing a portion of it is totally possible and often the case for first-time hikers.

4. Clementine Trail to Clark’s Pool

Location: Auburn State Recreation Area, Cool 
Length: 4.5 miles
Difficulty: Moderate
Route: Out and back
Dogs allowed: On leash

The Clementine Trail leading to Clark’s Pool is a multi-use path mostly used by hikers, mountain bikers, and horseback riders. This beautiful hike near Sacramento passes under the tallest bridge in California, exposes you to a beautiful waterfall, and takes you to a refreshing swimming hole. If weather permits, take a dip in the pool—despite being in the middle of the river, it’s actually fairly warm and very invigorating.

Climb mountains, not so the world can see you, but so you can see the world!

5. Bassi Falls

Location: El Dorado National Forest, Kyburz
Length: 3.6 miles
Difficulty: Moderate
Route: Out and back
Dogs allowed: Yes

Standing 109 feet tall, Bassi Falls is a true force of nature. This trail is a bit further away from the rest on the list, but measuring the distance is nonetheless worth the amazing experience of hiking near Sacramento with a waterfall. You don’t have to head out here alone either, you can bring your dog along to this adventure as well.

Easy Hikes Near Sacramento

Walking: the most ancient exercise and still the best modern exercise.

6. UC Davis Arboretum Trail

Location: Peter J. Shields Oak Grove, Davis
Length: 3.6 miles
Difficulty: Easy
Route: Loop
Dogs allowed: On leash

Located in a mesmerizing corner of Davis, the Arboretum looks like a slice of paradise. This pleasant hiking trail near Sacramento runs along the Putah Creek and features a lake and small gardens with a wide variety of beautiful plants from all over the world. Wheelchair, stroller, and kid-friendly, this easy hike near Sacramento accommodates everyone.

7. Cosumnes River Walk Trail

Location: Cosumnes River Preserve, Galt
Length: 3.2 miles
Difficulty: Easy
Route: Loop
Dogs allowed: No

Go on a 30-minute scenic drive south of Sacramento and you’ll find yourself at the beautiful Cosumnes River Preserve in Galt. As a designated wildlife habitat home to over 250 species of birds, this wonderful hiking spot near Sacramento is a super fun place to explore. Bring your binoculars and try to identify the wildflowers you encounter along the way. 

Thousands of nerve-shaken, over-civilized people are beginning to find out that going to the mountains is going home; that wildness is a necessity.

8. The Oak Nature Trail

Location: Folsom Lake State Recreation Area, Granite Bay
Length: 1.6 miles
Difficulty: Easy
Route: Out and back
Dogs allowed: On leash

Portions of this incredible hiking trail near Sacramento will make you feel like you’ve stepped into a magical fairytale land. Take your time as you trek this trail and stop by the interpretive signs to learn about native birds, giant oak trees, creatures of the night. Getting acquainted with the flora and fauna that make up this beautiful hiking spot near Sacramento makes your experience all the more worthwhile. 

9. Ancil Hoffman Loop

Location: Ancil Hoffman Park, Carmichael
Length: 3 miles
Difficulty: Easy
Route: Loop
Dogs allowed: On leash

Easily a favorite among hiking trails near Sacramento, the Ancil Hoffman Loop is great for hikers and runners looking for a quick day hike in nature. You’ll have a variety of views along this short hike and pass along a golf course, rivers, oak trees, bluffs, plenty of vegetation, and lovely parks. If you wish to bring your dog along, you’re absolutely welcome to as long as they’re on a leash.

The best journeys in life are those that answer questions you never thought to ask.

10. Sailor Bar Trail

Location: Fair Oaks
Length: 2.8 miles
Difficulty: Easy
Route: Loop
Dogs allowed: Yes

If you want to follow up your easy hikes near Sacramento with other fun outdoorsy activities, this is the trail for you. The Sailor Bar Trail is also popular among hikers, joggers, fishermen, horseback riders, and paddle sports enthusiasts. Many people bring their dogs along this hike near Sacramento and allow them to splash in the shallow parts of the river, so beware of the doggies if you’re paddling close by!

11. Humbug Willow Creek Trail

Location: Amos P. Catlin Park, Folsom
Length: 4.8 miles
Difficulty: Easy
Route: Out and back
Dogs allowed: On leash

Despite being almost five miles, the Humbug Willow Creek Trail is a breeze to complete. Also great for jogging and biking, this hiking spot near Sacramento is a wonderful area to explore. You might encounter cars passing along at a certain portion of the trail, but the beautiful scenery outweighs this minor con significantly.

Recomended businesses

Show me California.com
Recommended Businesses near

Discover the best of California. Our recommended businesses are top-quality and are committed to their communities.


RELATED Articles

Discover More

fueled by the power of California love
We’re committed to helping you discover the places, people and businesses that make our state Golden. Our online publication, updated daily, brings you all the content you need to live your California dreams. And that’s just the beginning…
LEARN MORE ABOUT US
Purpose section
Purpose section