The trail has alternate portions to become hiking-only or bike-friendly, as this is a popular mountain biking location. Mountain biking trails tend to be wider (fire roads). Both paths occasionally contain jagged rocks, so watch your footing.
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. You can continue up the hill, past the pond, to the Russian Ridge parking lot and beyond. Return the way you came at this point for a hike of about 3.2 miles or a bike ride of 4 to 4.6 miles, or continue North.
View Skyline Ridge's Ridge Trail in a larger map