Ridge Trail past Mt. Melville

From the parking lot to the right of the entrance from Skyline Blvd (closest to Skyline Blvd), take the trail West (it is clearly marked). If you would like to do the trail on a bike, take the trail to the left, which is wider. The two trail options intersect after 0.5 miles (hiking only) or 0.7 miles (biking) respectively. Hiking traffic continues West, and the biking traffic continues North. Enjoy ridge views and alternation between grassy bluffs and mossy wooded areas, with either trail. If biking, there are two small optional Westerly loops possible, which can add about 1/3 mile each to the trip. The hiking and biking trails come very close together at a rocky outcropping that serves as a vista point. Both trails rejoin at the bathrooms, just beyond a few buildings that look as though they once serviced a ranch. Continue North on one of 4 possible short trails turning to the right around Alpine Pond, and enjoy a bench, view through scopes, drink of water, or some of the displays at the David C. Daniels Nature Center. Continue up the hill, past the pond, to the Russian Ridge parking lot and continue past Mt. Melville along the Ridge Trail.  Turn back the way you came.  If this was hiked, the length is 6.4 miles total.  If you biked the trails marked for bikes, the length is 7.8 miles total.

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Enjoy this extensive portion of the Ridge Trail that passes some lovely views, a nature center, and overlooks a lake.