Sunday, April 5, 2015

The West Side of the Anza Trail

Last week, the Husband and I went up the Juan Bautista de Anza National Historic Trail via the Salinas entrance. I read that the west entrance is a few hundred feet higher than the east entrance. That may be why the hike up to the summit is easier. It's also nearer—about 1.5 miles from the gate, as opposed to about 2.5 miles from the San Juan gate.

Looking east towards San Benito County from the summit.

Looking west towards Monterey Bay from the summit.

There is quite a difference in terrain between the two sides. On the east side, you steadily traverse upward on the trail. At one point, it seems like you could walk right into the sky. On the west side, the climb is gradual. Your attention is diverted by the meadow along the start of the trail, then the rounded hills on the north, and the now and then pass through overhanging oak branches.

How to Get to the West Entrance
Via San Juan Grade Road: At the intersection of San Juan Grade Road and Crazy Horse Canyon Road, turn left. At the end of the road, turn left. You're on Stage Coach Road. Drive a few miles to the end of that road.

Via South on Highway 101: Take the Crazy Horse Canyon/Echo Valley Road exit. Go to the left for Crazy Horse Canyon Road, and continue for several minutes until the road dead ends at Stage Coach Road. Turn left and drive to the end of the road.

The west entrance of the Anza Trail


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