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Palisades Trail- Going from the top DOWN (Rugged and strenuous)

  • Aug 23, 2012 · 7:30 AM
  • This location is shown only to members

Warning: This trail is not for everyone and it is not a typical Sonoma County Wanderers trail. Every once in awhile I throw in a challenge! It is rugged and can be treacherous. It is not recommended for anyone with any type of injury that could be aggravated by hiking this trail or anyone that is not an experienced hiker. While the trail is beautiful it is steep, slippery, narrow and at times hard to follow. Due to past problems we can only accept hikers that have hiked previously with the group. No new hikers on this hike.

A description is as follows:

The rugged Palisades are precipitous volcanic cliffs that stretch southeast from Mount St. Helena. Travel through varied forests, a garden of lava rock, a meditation circle, scramble of volcanic cliffs and wander below the cliffs called the Palisades. This trail is between 11-12 miles with significant climbs and descents (appx[masked]ft). We will meet at the Calistoga Trailhead (which is actually the end of the hike) and shuttle to the top at the Robert Louis Stevenson Trailhead. We need to have drivers to make this hike work because of the shuttle involved.

Also as a special note! Our lunch spot is well past half way at Holm's Place. Eat before you come and if you think you will get hungry on the way to lunch then bring something you can eat as you hike.

To do this trail all hikers should be able to say yes to the following:

I have been hiking 10+ in the last couple of weeks.

  • I have been hiking trails with an altitude gain of over 2000 feet regularly and consistently in the past few months.
  • I consider myself an very experienced and fit hiker and can navigate rough terrain.

Directions:

If meeting at the top-Directions to the Robert Louis Stevenson Park access point:

From Calistoga go northeast on highway 29 up the winding mountain road until you see the sign for the park at the roads summit.

If meeting at the bottom-Directions to the Calistoga access to the trail:

From Highway 29/Lincoln Ave in downtown Calistoga, drive one mile northeast on Lincoln Ave (Hwy 29) through town to Silverado Trail. Drive through the intersection and park in the spaces on the right at the trailhead. Only a few cars will squeeze in here, but there is some parking diagonally across the road (south side of Lincoln).

As always:

Please always check your email the night before just in case there are any necessary adjustments. This is especially important if there are any weather issues. Cancellations due to weather will be posted by 10pm the previous evening.

Give yourself time to find the trail head so that you arrive prior to the scheduled time. That is the time we head out on the trail. It would be disappointing to miss having you on the hike due to late arrival.

Wear comfortable hiking shoes with good rugged soles that are well broken in.

Duration: 6-8 hours

Facilities: None

Dogs?: Not allowed on the top portion of the hike.

Bring plenty of water. This is a 3 liter hike. Dress in layers. There is a good chance this will be hot. Bring a lunch! This is a LONG day!

See you on the trail!

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  • Skip (Dustin) H.

    Slippery and dangerous trail, beautiful and interesting views and points of interest.

    August 24, 2012

  • Leigh

    Perfect! I couldn't have hoped for better weather. We had great views and a great group. I always love this hike and feel like it is such a good challenge!

    August 23, 2012

  • Leigh

    Hi everyone! Just a reminder that we are meeting at the bottom (Calistoga) at 7:30 and we will shuttle up to the top together! Sara and maybe Tara are coming together so we need at least one other driver (Dustin or Lucille) to make this work! See you there!

    August 23, 2012

  • Skip (Dustin) H.

    Bottom-up would work well, as long as there is at least one other person... Anyone else want to do that route?

    August 22, 2012

  • A former member
    A former member

    I'm wavering, because I'd like to go, but I think I'd better get some work done.

    August 22, 2012

  • Leigh

    Dustin and Faye...if you would like to hike up and do a key exchange half way..that would work. You could drive my Yukon back down.

    August 22, 2012

  • Leigh

    I'll be at Big John's leaving at 6:50...Tara or Gretchen if you want to catch a ride

    August 22, 2012

  • A former member
    A former member

    Yeah! Let's hope the fruit is ripe for tha pickin

    August 21, 2012

  • A former member
    A former member

    Can we pitstop at the homestead to check out the fruit trees?

    August 19, 2012

    • Leigh

      of course...we can have our lunch there

      August 21, 2012

  • Skip (Dustin) H.

    Grrrr. I prefer uphill hikes, but will accept the group verdict....

    August 15, 2012

  • Leigh

    Looks like we will be a small group so we will need to stick together. As a result, since more people want to come down (still climb 2500 feet) we will do that. We will meet at the bottom of the trail at 7:30 and consolidate into as few cars as possible to continue together to the top to do this hike. Follow the directions to the CALISTOGA trail end to meet up and drive together to the top.

    August 15, 2012

  • Tony

    I might have to work, but if I don't I would rather start at the top. As it gets hotter I would prefer to finish the hike in some shade.

    August 11, 2012

  • A former member
    A former member

    Would like to take the climbing up route.

    August 2, 2012

  • Leigh

    I have no doubt that you could do it from the bottom up! There is a difference in climb but some people think it's easier on their body to climb up versus come down.
    Either way...a key swap is always good!
    I just need to make sure it's not going to be too hot. So I'll keep you posted!

    July 23, 2012

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