Running the Napa Solano Ridge Trail (Napa)

After several weeks of fixing the Napa Solano Ridge Trail (known as the NSRT) at Skyline Wilderness Park, we were finally able to run it. The NSRT is one of the last ones I hadn’t explored at Skyline Wilderness Park so I was excited.

Running the Napa Solano Ridge Trail (Napa)

About Skyline Wilderness Park:

It does cost $5 to enter, but there are over 850 acres and 25 miles of well-kept hiking trails. There is plenty to do, including hiking, running, horseback riding, disc golf or mountain biking.  (It is important to note that dogs are not allowed on the trails). You can pay to hike and camp as well. It’s a lot more technical than many of the Bay Area trails so if you don’t like steep inclines and rocks, you might want to find another park. There have been several times I’ve logged 20 minute miles and have been working hard. Luckily the Napa Solano Ridge Trail is one of more runnable trails.

Running the Napa Solano Ridge Trail (Napa)
We started early

About the Napa Solano Ridge Trail (also known as the NSRT):

The Napa Solano Ridge Trail was closed for a while when we first moved to Napa because they were doing trial maintenance. It looks great and now is much more efficient at draining water. I’ve run the NSRT a few times after rain and the trails aren’t too flooded.

Running the Napa Solano Ridge Trail (Napa)

The Napa Solano Ridge Trail itself is 6.7 miles one way. There are a few different connector routes to make it a loop if you prefer. Once you get to the top, you’ll see a 360 panoramic view of the entire Bay Area. We even saw the Golden Gate Bridge from afar.

Running the Napa Solano Ridge Trail (Napa)

The Napa Solano Ridge Trail starts east of Napa State Hospital. The NSRT is located in Skyline Wilderness Park and you’ll have to go about 2 miles to get to the start. It’s narrow and rocky but has beautiful views of the mountains. Since it’s an out and back you can do as much as you feel comfortable until you need to turn around. You could also park one car at each end which is definitely worth the view of the Bay Area (of course doing the entire trail is an option too).

Running the Napa Solano Ridge Trail (Napa)

According to Skyline Wilderness Park, in October 2017, the Atlas Fire burned through most of the park and damaged a lot of the Napa Solano Ridge Trail. Afterward, hundreds of damaged trees were removed from the NSRT.

Running the Napa Solano Ridge Trail (Napa)
You can see the bay area and even Mt. Diablo in the back

If you follow the NSRT the full 6.7 miles you’ll arrive at the Suscol Headwaters Park. From Skyline Wilderness Park to Suscol Headwaters Park, it’s about 1400 feet of elevation gain and only 550 loss.

What I do like most about running the Napa Solano Ridge Trail is that it’s the most runnable trail in all of Skyline. In some sections of Skyline Wilderness Park I’m running 20-minute miles (and working hard) but for the most part, it easier to get some speed on the NSRT.

Running the Napa Solano Ridge Trail (Napa)
Well groomed single track

Skyline Wilderness Park Trails I’ve Done:

Buckeye Trail 

Exploring Lake Marie via Skyline Trail

Rim Rock Trail to Sugarloaf Mountain

You can see more hikes here or even follow me on Strava for more trail runs and hikes.

Questions for you:

What was the last trail you explored?

Where is your favorite local trail?