Back to all Hikes

moderate

Activities

  • Hiking
  • Dogs
  • Horses
  • Fishing
  • Biking
  • Camping
  • Handicap Accessibility
  • Swimming

Tiptoe Falls Hike Information

You’ll find this waterfall on Fall Creek—a short, steep tributary of Pescadero Creek.

Watch for:

As you walk, keep your eyes peeled for banana slugs, salamanders and newts.

Hiking Details for the Trail to Tiptoe Falls

Distance: 2.3 miles

Elevation change: 1,000 feet

Hiking time: 2 hours

Trail surface: Mixed

Best Season: Winter, spring (to see the waterfalls)

Managing agency: California Department of Parks and Recreation

Parking lot location: Click here for directions

Overview: To get to Tiptoe Falls, you’ll first need to cross Pescadero Creek, one of the largest creeks in the area during the winter months. There are shallow, seasonal crossings through the creek a short walk from the parking area offering a direct route to the falls. However, we recommend using the bridge along Portola State Park Road to safely cross the creek, especially in the winter.

From the park headquarters, follow Portola State Park Road south toward the Iverson Cabin site. There’s a bridge to cross Pescadero Creek just past the intersection with the Summit Trail. Then follow the Iverson Trail for the remainder of the hike before reaching the spur trail that leads to the falls.

Tiptoe Falls consists of two waterfalls. The upper tier cascades out of dense undergrowth into a small pool. The creek then travels through a small meadow before falling over the lower tier of the falls — the more impressive of the two. It’s best to visit after there has been some rain, since it tends to dry out during the summer months.

Directions to the Tiptoe Falls Hike

From 280, exit at Page Mill Road. Head west and follow Page Mill Road for about 11.5 winding miles until you cross Skyline Blvd. Stay straight, continuing on Alpine Road for about 3.5 more miles. Take a slight left onto Portola State Park Road.

More About Portola Redwoods State Park

Portola Redwoods State Park contains a diverse forest including coast redwoods, Douglas fir and the endangered Santa Cruz cypress tree. You’ll also find tan oak, madrone, California bay laurel, canyon live oak, big leaf maple and California wax myrtle throughout the park. The creeks that run through the park are home to Coho salmon and steelhead trout. With 18 miles of trails, a family campground, group campsites and a trail camp for backpackers, there are plenty of options for exploration.

This property was acquired by the State of California in 1945 from the Masonic Lodge’s Islam Shrine, who had used the property as a summer retreat. Since that time, the park has doubled in size, thanks primarily to the conservation efforts of POST and Save the Redwoods League.

Get our free hiking guide to explore beautiful POST-protected lands.

Download Now
Scroll to top