Annadel State Park

Santa Rosa, California 95409

Annadel State Park

Annadel State Park Professional Review and Guide

"Annadel State Park has 35 miles of trails in a 5,000-acre “wilderness at your doorstep” on the eastern edge of populous Santa Rosa. It is a delightful place, with mature forest on the north-facing slope, even including a few small groves of redwoods. Much of it is oak woodland, considered to be the best example of this kind of forest in public ownership. Be warned, however, that the park sees heavy use by horses and bicycles."

More Annadel State Park Professional Reviews and Guides

"Annadel State Park, located on the eastern edge of Santa Rosa, has been a favorite area of off-road cyclists for years. Annadel offers 5,000 acres of excellent trails with rolling hills, intermittent streams, woodlands and meadows. There are 35 miles of gently rolling trails in the park with elevations ranging from 360 to 1,880 feet. Lake Ilsanjo, a 2.5-mile ride from the parking lot, is a popular destination for bicycles and hikers as well. Ledson Marsh, also a popular destination, is an ideal area for observing and photographing the park's wildlife, which include over 130 species of birds, as well as deer, fox, raccoon, muskrat, skunk, bobcat, and wild pig. Located in the Santa Rosa area."

"About 60 miles north of San Francisco and just outside of Santa Rosa lies one of the most popular mountain bike destinations in the North Bay. Annadel State Park, encompassing some 5,000 acres of redwoods, oaks, manzanita and scrub brush, has terrain and scenery to both inspire and to challenge. While the elevations don’t match those of the higher coastal mountains and the trails aren’t particularly steep, the numerous rocky sections make the going quite rough in many places. Tricky climbs and bone-jarring descents offer the main challenges in Annadel. The rewards are the diverse scenery and the stunning views. This ride offers a fairly complete tour of the park and includes loops around both Lake Ilsanjo and Ledson Marsh."

"This ride takes you up to Lake Ilsanjo on a gradual singletrack that passes along a creek under a canopy of bay trees. You’ll circle the lake on dirt roads, then return via a series of beautiful and varied singletracks. Highlights: A beautiful swimming lake (reservoir, actually); turkeys foraging around the lake; and a lot of nice, lightly to moderately technical singletrack. Annadel is the most pristine and diverse example of a native oak woodland in the entire state. No motorized vehicles are allowed on the trails."

"Annadel is still popular with mountain bikers of all abilities and there are sections and trails that are fairly advanced. Legal trails and fire roads are well signed and any that are not should be considered off-limits. The route described below is a 16.6-mile, figure-eight loop that uses mostly narrow fire roads and a stretch of singletrack, all of which are generally open year-round. The climbing is moderate, and you gain about 1,190 feet over ascending and descending terrain. The first loop, which widely encircles secluded Lake Ilsanjo, is mostly mildly technical with some spots of intermediate terrain; adventurous beginners are bound to enjoy it. (Several options and configurations are available for an easy return.) Advanced riders will want to tackle the outermost loop, which goes around Ledson Marsh. That loop includes short but intense stretches of technical terrain characterized by semi-buried chunks of rough rock. That kind of terrain, combined with a moderate climb to the marsh, followed by gradual ups and downs, will make you either appreciate the shocks on your bike or wish you had them."

"Obsidian trails through forests and meadows, to a lake"

"If hikes were marketed like new cars, I’d say that this Annadel loop has the most meadow views per mile. This hike climbs through a forest, loops around a meadow, and skirts the shore of Lake Ilsanjo, then returns through woods to the trailhead. Although Annadel is a busy park, heavily used by equestrians and cyclists as well as local walkers and runners, it’s worth putting up with the crowds."

"You haven't truly "done" the Wine Country until you have rolled your tire tread upon the trails of Annadel State Park. This is definitely not a place for beginners. The terrain at Annadel is most often described as "really rocky," but that doesn't quite tell the whole story. The trails vary between loose and bumpy to "you call that a trail?" If you want to practice your technical skills, this is certainly the place. Parking fee."

"This loop is classic Jekyll and Hyde, with Rough Go being the technical, rutted, and boulder-strewn singletrack counterpoint to Canyon Trail’s moderately smooth fire-road serenity. This ride is great in either direction and provides a very different experience, depending on whether you choose to climb or descend Rough Go. There is no easy spinning on Rough Go; “taking it easy” on this trail means that one of the boulder outcroppings has decided to take possession of your forward motion. However, stopping just gives you reason to take in the rolling grasslands, reddish-brown boulders, and scattered old-growth oaks."

"This is the big-daddy loop in Annadel, which goes up and around the Ledson Marsh. Two Quarry Trail is one of the more challenging rides in the park, and Ridge Trail is a true gem born of the new school of trail building that has arisen in the past ten years. It’s a long ride, but you’ll be enjoying yourself so much you won’t realize you’re tired until you’re back in the car. Many park users, except the equestrian crowd, park their vehicles in the dirt lot off Channel Drive when accessing the park from the northwest side. There are trails that begin just across the road from this lot, but today you’ll ride 1.5 miles farther up Channel Drive to the equestrian parking lot and start the ride on Warren Richardson Trail. A trail sign with a blown-up trail map and some environmental warnings is there, as well as a drinking fountain. Warren Richardson begins at the base of the mountain, in a shady grove of pine and bay trees and poison oak. A large gate separates you from your dream ride. Fortunately, there is an opening for pedestrian and bicycle access on the left. Pass through and begin climbing up the fire road."

"Gradually climb over grassy hillsides and through oak woodlands and conifer forests on the west side of Bennett Mountain along wide, rocky service roads. You gain 1100 feet and then lose 1000 feet as you descend past spring-fed meadows on a well-graded trail to Annadel’s east side. The west- and south-facing slopes can be hot in summer; north- and east-facing slopes are forested."

"This loop incorporates much of the previous ride's short loop, bypassing Lake Ilsanjo in favor of the high ridge a few hundred feet below the summit of Bennett Mountain, the park's highest peak. The route leads around Ledson Marsh on the park's east side, through meadows and forests and along terrain that is comparatively smooth and darned near level. Parking fee."

"This loop offers great singletrack riding through the rolling hills of diverse oak woodlands, grass meadows, chaparral, and forests of Douglas fir and redwood. While there are endless combinations of trails throughout the park, this loop gives an overview of the central and southeastern sections. The size of the park allows you to repeat favorite sections. You will want to go back to explore and piece together your favorite trails. The marsh has some great places to picnic and bird-watch. Trail surface: 68 percent singletrack and 32 percent fire road."

"This ride offers great singletrack through pristine oak woodlands and meadows in the rolling hills east of Santa Rosa. Enter through Spring Lake Regional Park and weave through the northwestern part of Annadel State Park. Full suspension is recommended for aptly named trails like Cobblestone and Rough Go. Bay Area fog seldom reaches this park. Even in the shade, summers can be hot here, but you can cool off in Lake Ilsanjo. Trail surface: 70 percent singletrack, 23 percent dirt roads, and 7 percent paved bike path."

"This ride takes you up a dirt road to the beginning of a lovely twisty singletrack that used to be a dirt road. The singletrack in turn takes you through a Douglas fir forest to a dirt road, which leads to large Ledson Marsh, filled with rushes higher than your head. This marsh supports waterfowl as well as the endangered red-legged frog. Picnic tables are available at the marsh as well as in several locations along the way. A dirt road that’s regenerating into a rocky, technical singletrack leads you back to the South Burma Trail, which you now get to ride downhill. Finally, you return to your car via a playful downhill singletrack and a rolling singletrack. Highlights: Wild turkeys; wonderful singletrack that has been recently rebuilt; a marsh with rushes, waterfowl, and endangered red-legged frogs; a variety of wildflowers from March to June. Annadel is the most pristine and diverse example of a native oak woodland in the entire state. No motorized vehicles are allowed on the trails."

Annadel State Park Reviews

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it is best trails for mountain bikers. their is lot more then ten miles of trial. if you have time to ride, their is about 25 miles of marked trails at the park. you would have to park on channel drive(very limited parking space. show up early to get spot) start ride on cobblestone trail or drive in about 3/4 mile(pay at self service first near the ranger station) and drive another 3/4 mile where all the horse trailer park or start at main parking on howarth park(get their early. limited parking). ride couple miles in then fun starts.
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This hike was definitely a challenge. The scenery was beautiful though. The hike takes you through a forest with giant redwoods and pines right next to a creek abundant with wildlife. Then, the trail has two paths to reach the park/lake at the very top of the trail. One is giant boulders the other an extremely steep trail.
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I did this trail on my bike a couple of years ago and had a great time. It's tough going up but coming down is a blast, I felt like a kid again!Have fun!
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We rode about 20 miles of a variety of trails. A lot of work reconstructing and building singletrack has happened in the last few years. Great trails of all variety. Tight and twisty or smooth and flowing. Lots of wildlife and no dogs on the trail (probably why there was a lot of wildlife). Defintely worth lots of repeats.

Trail Information

Santa Rosa
Nearby City
Several options
Trail Type
Easy to Difficult
Skill Level
Year round
Annadel State Park; Spring Lake County Park.
Local Contacts
DeLorme Northern California Atlas & Gazetteer.
Local Maps
Resident—Nuttall’s Woodpecker, Hutton’s Vireo, Chestnut-backed Chickadee, Western Bluebird, Lesser Goldfinch. Summer—Western Wood-Pewee; Pacific-slope and Ash-throated Flycatchers; Cassin’s Vireo; Violet-green Swallow; Black-throated Gray Warbler; Black-headed Grosbeak; Lazuli Bunting; Bullock’s Oriole.
Specialty Birds