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Tall Trees Grove

The best hike in Redwood National Park!

Hiking Moderate

6.2 km
297 m
296 m
1-2 hrs
Low Point
33 m
High Point
253 m
Tall Trees Grove Map

Apparently, the foresters didn't think to consult the poets when naming most of the redwood groves in Northern California. Don't let the ho-hum name dissuade you—the Tall Trees Grove offers one of the best redwood hikes in the world!


First, to reach the trailhead for the Tall Trees Grove, you'll have to drive down a gated dirt road for 6 miles (one-way). Only then does the 4-mile round-trip hike to the Tall Trees Grove begin. The distance down the gated dirt road is much too long to walk, so to get through the gate, you'll need to apply for a permit here to hike the trail. The permits are free and are generally easy to get, even a couple days in advance. With your permit, you'll get a code to the gate at the start of the dirt road, allowing you to drive down to the small trailhead parking lot. If you don't get through the gate in your car, do not attempt this hike, even if you see other people trying to walk down the road to reach the trail!

Once you successfully acquire your permit from the NPS and get to the trailhead, the trail begins by going downhill from the trailhead. You'll descend over 800 vertical feet to reach the grove in the alluvial floodplain of Redwood Creek far below. The round-trip hike as mapped requires almost a thousand vertical feet of climbing, most of that coming on the hike back up. Before you descend to the grove, make sure you're in good enough shape for the return hike. There is no other way in or out of the steep-sided valley aside from your two feet and this narrow trail.

If you choose to go forward with the hike, you'll begin by descending into the grove via a smooth, switchbacked singletrack trail. The entire trail is smooth and non-technical, but as noted above, it can be physically demanding. But you won't notice it as you descend into the grove--instead, you'll be captivated by the tops of the redwoods as you hike past the canopy and down to the base of the trees.

When you reach the bottom, you'll find yourself in the heart of the Tall Trees Grove. While the tallest tree in the world is not found in this grove, many of the redwoods here soar over 350 feet tall!

Once in the bottom of the valley, follow the short loop around the grove to fully absorb the grandeur of these trees. I also recommend taking a dogleg to the creek bottom to emerge from the trees and into the sunlight. If you walk a ways out into the creek bottom (if the water is low enough), you can look back and get a perspective of the towering trees that's impossible to attain when you're completely surrounded by redwoods.

Once done enjoying the grove, return to the trailhead via the same trail. Now comes the hard part—the climb out is steep and unrelenting, but several benches along the way offer welcome opportunities to stop.

Once you get back to the car, think about how much work it took to hike up that hill, and then realize that the tallest trees in the grove are half as tall as the entire mountainside you climbed! The scale is absolutely mind-blowing!

Sources: https://www.nps.gov/thingstodo/talltreeshike.htm



Hiking along trails with some uneven terrain and small hills. Small rocks and roots may be present.

Low Exposure

1 out of 4

The path is on completely flat land and potential injury is limited to falling over.


3 out of 4

Little chance of being seen or helped in case of an accident.

Best time to visit

all year round


  • Picturesque
  • Forestry or heavy vegetation

Guidebooks in this area