A major section of the Redwood Regional Park - "Official Bike Trail"
loop, this is also a good starting point. From the Skyline Gate Staging Area, the trail is a narrow doubletrack, well shaded with some exposed roots and rocks. This section to the Chabot Space and Science Center and Redwood Bowl has the most use by hikers and dog walkers, so the trail can be crowded on weekends and early evenings. The trail starts fairly level but there are a few short, steep climbs and descents near the Space Center and Redwood Bowl.
At the Redwood Bowl, the Graham Trail
forks to the right, so keep left to stay on West Ridge, climbing a bit through the redwoods to a long straight section lined with eucalyptus trees. Watch out for loose branches. This starts a long stretch of wide, mostly smooth fire road descent.
The Baccharis Trail
branches to the right and is an alternate route that rejoins West Ridge further down and can be used as an out-and-back loop.
Most of the trail to this point is beginner to intermediate but the last mile is a steep drop into Redwood Creek Canyon on a narrow rutted road. Look for the "Down Grade" sign. While not too loose or technical, however, there are several drops and switchbacks and the chance of meeting hikers or horseback riders coming up from the canyon requires checking speed. It would be a difficult climb coming back up from the canyon.