Hiking and Biking
Mills Canyon is a wildlife area within the City limits with a hiking trail within the park. The loop trail gives the walker a variety of views of the Canyon. Plant and animal species native to the Coastal Foothills live in the Canyon, and the park is intended for limited recreation. In order to protect the native plants and animals, dogs off leash are not welcome. The path is fairly level, but with enough elevation gain to make you sweat a bit.
Images and names of native wildflowers are posted at the park entrance, so visitors can identify what they see. Tours are organized by the Friends of Mills Canyon, a volunteer group that provide thematic hikes and also participate in park cleanup throughout the year.
The park is open daily from 6 am – 9 pm. No bicycles, skateboards are permitted.
Crystal Springs (Sawyer Camp Trail) is probably the second most popular trail in mid-county because a portion of it is heavily used by bicyclists, joggers and hikers. The six mile (10 km) trail is located in the San Andreas Fault rift Valley in San Mateo County near Hillsborough. Approximately 300,000 people use the trail every year. It provides excellent views of San Francisco Peninsula's Crystal Springs Watershed. The trail is managed by San Mateo County and is totally surfaced in asphalt. Along with the preserved forests and Coastal Range ridge, these lakes form stunning pictures which change with the course of the day. Ducks, hawks and numerous small birds can be seen overhead or in the surrounding oaks and madrones. Over 180 different species of birds have been identified there. Deer, squirrels, bobcats, coyotes and rattlesnakes are often spotted. Recent sightings of mountain lions have also occurred. This pristine Watershed area surrounding the trail is recognized by the California Department of Fish and Game as a Fish Wildlife Refuge and is considered a Biosphere Reserve.
Crystal Springs Park is open every day of the year including all holidays. It opens daily at sunrise and closes at sunset.
Dog Friendly Seal Point Park in San Mateo
This popular three acre off-leash dog park has areas for big and small dogs. The park is surrounded by trails and grassy, wildflower-covered hillsides with many walking and biking paths that wander through natural and restored habitats. Seal Point Park is home to many types of wildlife, so keep your eyes open. It also has a natural stairway as well as kayak and wind-surf launch areas.
There are some rules, so click here or call 650-522-7420 for more information.