Preserve Info

Hiking
Biking
Equestrian
Dogs on Leash
Wheelchair accessible
Restrooms

Overview

Windy Hill is named for its distinctive, breezy grass-covered hilltop, which can be seen from many areas of the peninsula. The 1,335-acre preserve features open grassland ridges and forests of redwood, fir, and oak.

Peninsula Open Space Trust, a local non-profit land trust, provided major support for acquisition of this preserve.

Dog Access: Leashed dogs are allowed on all trails except Lost and Razorback Trails.

Bike and Equestrian Access Limited: Activities may not be designated on all trails within the Preserve and are subject to seasonal closures (See Trail Conditions)-- always refer to the map and trail signage for where the activity is permitted. 

Gallery

Features

  • Windy Hill is an ideal spot for kite flying. 
  • Hang gliding, paragliding, and remote control gliding are allowed by obtaining a special activity permit. Please see Permit Information for details
  • Picnic tables are located adjacent to the Spring Ridge parking area – a super beginning to a day, or the perfect ending to a long hike!

Directions

Windy Hill Open Space Preserve is located in the Town of Portola Valley.

The parking lot at the lower portion of the preserve is located on Portola Road. Parking is available for 25 vehicles. Please note: This parking lot on Portola Road fills quickly. Overflow parking is available at the Portola Valley Town Center, approximately 0.4 miles north on Portola Road. Please do not park on Portola Road: parking is strictly enforced.

Get driving directions to main lot:

 

Equestrian trailer/bus parking: Equestrian trailer/bus parking is available, courtesy of the Town of Portola Valley, at the driveway entrance to the Spring Downs Equestrian Center at 725 Portola Road.  The driveway off Portola Road is town property, and there is a gravel area to the left of the paved driveway that is suitable for trailer/bus parking. A ½-mile roadside trail runs from the driveway to the Windy Hill parking lot on Portola Road. Please note: Spring Down is a private facility, and District visitors should not enter that area.

Get driving directions to equestrian parking:

 

Parking for the upper portion of the preserve, the Skyline Boulevard Picnic Area, is located on Skyline Boulevard (Highway 35), 2.3 miles south of Highway 84 (La Honda Road) and 4.9 miles north of Page Mill Road. Additional roadside parking is available along Skyline Boulevard.

Get driving directions to Skyline Boulevard Picnic Area:

 

Trails

Hikers and equestrians use the Hamms Gulch, Eagle, Razorback Ridge, and Lost Trails to make an 8-mile loop through forested ridges to the valley floor and back again.

The Anniversary Trail provides a short hike atop Windy Hill, with spectacular views of the bay and surrounding valley.

Popular among bicyclists is the Spring Ridge Trail, which descends from Skyline Boulevard and continues along a grassy ridge to Portola Valley.

Dogs - Leashed dogs are allowed on all trails except Lost and Razorback Trails. (Dogs are allowed on the portion of Lost Trail between the Hamms Gulch Trail and the Anniversary Trail).

Trail Conditions

  • The Betsy Crowder Trail is OPEN to equestrians.
  • Lost Trail, Hamms Gulch Trail, and Razorback Ridge Trail are OPEN to equestrians.

History

Recognized as a significant addition to the District in 1980, the Preserve was formed in the "upper" portion with a 537-acre acquisition with major support from Peninsula Open Space Trust. A second major purchase of 429 acres in 1987 added the "lower" portion and included the scenic backdrop of Spring Ridge.

Regulations

  • Hours: Open dawn to one-half hour after sunset.
  • Dogs: Dogs are allowed only on designated trails in this Preserve. Must be controlled on a maximum 6-foot leash at all times. Dogs are allowed only in designated preserves or areas as posted. Dog walkers are required to bag and remove all dog waste from the Preserve by packing it out. Moving dog waste off trail is not permittedFor information visit the Dog Access page.
  • Bicyclists: Bikes are allowed on designated trails in this Preserve. Helmets are required for all riders at all times. Please observe the 15-mph trail speed limit (5-mph when passing or approaching blind turns). For more information visit the Bicycle Access page.
  • Equestrians: Horses are allowed on designated trails in this Preserve. Helmets are recommended for all equestrians. For more information visit the Equestrian Access page.
  • Groups: For safety reasons, permits are required for all groups of 20 or more people.
  • Fires: Fires are prohibited on preserves.
     
  • Smoking: Smoking is prohibited on preserves.
     
  • Weapons: Weapons of any kind are prohibited on preserves. 
     
  • Plants and Animals: Please leave plants and animals undisturbed. This not only preserves the natural environment, but is also a safety precaution. 
     
  • Water Areas: Swimming wading, or engaging in any water-contact activity in any water areas of the District is prohibited.

Download District Regulations and Ordinances

Overview

Windy Hill is named for its distinctive, breezy grass-covered hilltop, which can be seen from many areas of the peninsula. The 1,335-acre preserve features open grassland ridges and forests of redwood, fir, and oak.

Peninsula Open Space Trust, a local non-profit land trust, provided major support for acquisition of this preserve.

Dog Access: Leashed dogs are allowed on all trails except Lost and Razorback Trails.

Bike and Equestrian Access Limited: Activities may not be designated on all trails within the Preserve and are subject to seasonal closures (See Trail Conditions)-- always refer to the map and trail signage for where the activity is permitted. 

Photo Gallery

Features

  • Windy Hill is an ideal spot for kite flying. 
  • Hang gliding, paragliding, and remote control gliding are allowed by obtaining a special activity permit. Please see Permit Information for details
  • Picnic tables are located adjacent to the Spring Ridge parking area – a super beginning to a day, or the perfect ending to a long hike!

Windy Hill Open Space Preserve is located in the Town of Portola Valley.

The parking lot at the lower portion of the preserve is located on Portola Road. Parking is available for 25 vehicles. Please note: This parking lot on Portola Road fills quickly. Overflow parking is available at the Portola Valley Town Center, approximately 0.4 miles north on Portola Road. Please do not park on Portola Road: parking is strictly enforced.

Get driving directions to main lot:

 

Equestrian trailer/bus parking: Equestrian trailer/bus parking is available, courtesy of the Town of Portola Valley, at the driveway entrance to the Spring Downs Equestrian Center at 725 Portola Road.  The driveway off Portola Road is town property, and there is a gravel area to the left of the paved driveway that is suitable for trailer/bus parking. A ½-mile roadside trail runs from the driveway to the Windy Hill parking lot on Portola Road. Please note: Spring Down is a private facility, and District visitors should not enter that area.

Get driving directions to equestrian parking:

 

Parking for the upper portion of the preserve, the Skyline Boulevard Picnic Area, is located on Skyline Boulevard (Highway 35), 2.3 miles south of Highway 84 (La Honda Road) and 4.9 miles north of Page Mill Road. Additional roadside parking is available along Skyline Boulevard.

Get driving directions to Skyline Boulevard Picnic Area:

 

Trails

Hikers and equestrians use the Hamms Gulch, Eagle, Razorback Ridge, and Lost Trails to make an 8-mile loop through forested ridges to the valley floor and back again.

The Anniversary Trail provides a short hike atop Windy Hill, with spectacular views of the bay and surrounding valley.

Popular among bicyclists is the Spring Ridge Trail, which descends from Skyline Boulevard and continues along a grassy ridge to Portola Valley.

Dogs - Leashed dogs are allowed on all trails except Lost and Razorback Trails. (Dogs are allowed on the portion of Lost Trail between the Hamms Gulch Trail and the Anniversary Trail).

Trail Conditions

  • The Betsy Crowder Trail is OPEN to equestrians.
  • Lost Trail, Hamms Gulch Trail, and Razorback Ridge Trail are OPEN to equestrians.

Recognized as a significant addition to the District in 1980, the Preserve was formed in the "upper" portion with a 537-acre acquisition with major support from Peninsula Open Space Trust. A second major purchase of 429 acres in 1987 added the "lower" portion and included the scenic backdrop of Spring Ridge.

  • Hours: Open dawn to one-half hour after sunset.
  • Dogs: Dogs are allowed only on designated trails in this Preserve. Must be controlled on a maximum 6-foot leash at all times. Dogs are allowed only in designated preserves or areas as posted. Dog walkers are required to bag and remove all dog waste from the Preserve by packing it out. Moving dog waste off trail is not permittedFor information visit the Dog Access page.
  • Bicyclists: Bikes are allowed on designated trails in this Preserve. Helmets are required for all riders at all times. Please observe the 15-mph trail speed limit (5-mph when passing or approaching blind turns). For more information visit the Bicycle Access page.
  • Equestrians: Horses are allowed on designated trails in this Preserve. Helmets are recommended for all equestrians. For more information visit the Equestrian Access page.
  • Groups: For safety reasons, permits are required for all groups of 20 or more people.
  • Fires: Fires are prohibited on preserves.
     
  • Smoking: Smoking is prohibited on preserves.
     
  • Weapons: Weapons of any kind are prohibited on preserves. 
     
  • Plants and Animals: Please leave plants and animals undisturbed. This not only preserves the natural environment, but is also a safety precaution. 
     
  • Water Areas: Swimming wading, or engaging in any water-contact activity in any water areas of the District is prohibited.

Download District Regulations and Ordinances

Download Preserve Map

Preserve Info

Hiking
Biking
Equestrian
Dogs on Leash
Wheelchair accessible
Restrooms

Hours

Open dawn to one-half hour after sunset.

Preserve Activities

July 25, 2015