"This popular loop hike is the easiest and shortest hike in Pinnacles National Monument, yet it is a fascinating and diverse journey. Bear Gulch Cave is another talus cave that was formed by giant boulders falling into a narrow canyon, wedging themselves to- gether to form a ceiling. The winding cave passage, which can be walked from one end to the other, is pitch black in places, natu- rally spooky, and can induce claustrophobia. The cave is home to a colony of Townsend’s big-eared bats. The shy bats, numbering over 350, is one of the largest colonies in the state. The bats use the cave for roosting, hibernating, and raising their young. The trail emerges from the cave at Bear Gulch Reservoir, a manmade reservoir in a boulder-filled gorge on Bear Creek. The picturesque, rock-walled reservoir sits upstream from the cave at an elevation of 1 ,600 feet. The loop returns on the Rim Trail, a short but scenic route perched on Discovery Wall, the west wall of Bear Gulch. The path overlooks the gulch and Bear Gulch Cave. The hike begins at the lower end of Bear Gulch among moss- covered rocks. The trail climbs through the shaded forest to the cave. Weaving through the cave includes climbing, ducking, squeezing, and scrambling in a dark and narrow passage with low"