» Official Trail Map: High quality trail map with countours and trails clearly shown.
» Redwood Hikes Map: Annotated trail map of San Lorenzo Valley that shows many parks, not just Henry Cowell. This is an excellent map sold by Dave Baselt ($6.95 in Jan 2012).
» PeasePress Map: Trails of Santa Cruz: Excellent quality map showing various parks in the Santa Cruz area.
To First River Crossing (2.6 miles):
Behind the bookstore, there is a trail that connects to River Trail (1.0 miles), which meanders next to San Lorenzo River. There are some unmarked junctions along this trail. As long as the trail goes next to the river, it is River Trail, until it meets Eagle Trail at a marked junction. Stay right and continue along River Trail (0.3 miles). Turn right on Rincon Fire Road (0.2 miles). Continue along Big Rock Hole Trail (1.1 miles) until it reaches a river. The river crossing is not here. Turn left and walk a few hundred feet to reach the spot where the trail ends and we have to cross the river.
To Second River Crossing (0.6 miles):
After crossing the river, walk along Buckeye Trail (0.6 miles). There are no signs along Buckeye Trail between the two river crossings. When the trail ends, cross the river diagonally. Do not go straight ahead, instead walk towards the right to reach solid ground that has no vegetation.
To Observation Deck (1.3 miles):
Follow Buckeye Trail (0.7 miles, steep climb) → left on Powder Mill Fire Road (0.3 miles) → left on Pine Trail (0.3 miles) to Observation Deck
To Parking Lot near Bookstore (2.5 miles): From Observation Deck, follow Pine Trail (0.8 miles) → left on Eagle Creek Trail (0.7 miles) → right on River Trail (0.5 miles) → right on Redwood Trail (0.5 miles) to reach the parking lot.
- Close to the intersection of River Trail and Eagle Trail, there is a large area with river access.
- The descent along Big Rock Hole Trail and the ascent via Buckeye Trail are pretty steep and are good for workout.