Taylor Mountain Regional Park and Open Space Preserve

3820 Petaluma Hill Road, Santa Rosa

  • Accessible areas
  • Biking
  • Birding
  • Equestrian Trails
  • Hiking/Walking Trails
  • Picnic Facilities

Hours: 7:00 a.m. to sunset.

Parking: $7 per vehicle. Free for Regional Parks members.

South Entrance: 3820 Petaluma Hill Road, Santa Rosa

North Entrance: 2080 Kawana Terrace, Santa Rosa

Dogs: Permitted on leash no longer than 6 feet.

Accessibility: Accessible parking, picnic site and portable restroom.

Ranger Phone: (707) 539-8092

Taylor Mountain Regional Park & Open Space Preserve is a prominent Santa Rosa landmark, providing panoramic views of the city and distant peaks. The park's 1,100 acres include sweeping grasslands, oak woodlands, several creeks, and habitat for a variety of wildlife. The park has 5.5 miles of unpaved trails and an 18-hole disc golf course.

The park opened in 2013, when ownership was transferred to Regional Parks from the voter-funded Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation & Open Space District. The interim park entrance is just off of Kawana Terrace. A second entrance and trailhead opened along Petaluma Hill Road, south of Yolanda Avenue in 2015. The Petaluma Hill Road entrance includes picnic tables, parking for horse trailers, and a 1.2-mile trail loop with a .2-mile connector to the upper park.

The park's master plan calls for the eventual development of 17 miles of trails, a "natural play area," hike-in campsites, a visitor center and other features, as funding becomes available.

The park property historically was used for ranching, and cattle grazing continues in the park. 

Taylor Mountain Trails

Length:5.5 miles of trails

Taylor Mountain Regional Park has 5.5 miles of trails along three routes. 

The Eastern Trail is the most difficult, with a steep, 1,000-foot ascent to near the top of the mountain.

The Western Trail offers a challenging yet more gradual climb up the mountain, connecting to the last leg of the Eastern Trail for the steep climb to the top.

The relatively flat Todd Creek Trail loops off of lower Western Trail, winding through a lovely oak woodland for .7-miles.

The 1.2-mile Red Tail Trail loop opens on June 13, 2015 at a new park entrance along Petaluma Hill Road. The trail bends through beautiful oaks and grassy meadows with some gradual climbs, looping back to the parking lot. At about the mid-point, a .2-mile trail connector links the Red Tail Trail it to the Western Trail.  

Both the Eastern and Western Trails offer sweeping views of Santa Rosa and beyond.

Cattle Grazing Area Safety Tips

In keeping with the site’s agricultural history and resource management goals, cattle grazing will continue at the park and preserve. Although cows are not aggressive by nature, if aggravated or threatened, they will defend themselves.

Here are some important safety tips:

  • Keep your dog on a leash at all times!
    Dogs are perceived as predators. Cows cannot always distinguish the difference between a coyote and a dog and may become aggravated by an approaching dog off leash.
  • Do not attempt to pet, feed or touch the cows. Cows are very
    protective of their young.

    Do not get in between a calf and its mother and do not approach a stray calf,
    its mother is likely nearby.
  • If Cattle are on the trail ahead of you:
    Make yourself known well in advance by waving your arms and shout. This will usually make them scatter. The other option would be to turn back!
  • Be sure to give cattle plenty of space and an avenue of escape.
    If you encounter a cow that is acting in a threatening manner or appears to be sick, injured or dead, please take note the location and report it to park staff.


Trails Challenge

PDF fileView larger image of Taylor Mountain Trails Challenge Map
Taylor Mountain Regional Park & Open Space Preserve
2080 Kawana Terrace, Santa Rosa

This park is featured in the Sonoma County Trails Challenge, which invites you to get out and get active by hiking five of 15 routes highlighted in the updated Trails Challenge guidebook. Submit a trails log when you finish all five hikes and get a free Trails Challenge gift!

Option 1:  Western Route to Todd Creek Trail to Western Route to Eastern Route to summit
Loop length: 5 miles round trip
Degree of difficulty: Strenuous
Elevation Gain: 1,100 feet

Option 2:  Western Route to Todd Creek Trail to Red Tail Loop to Western Route to Eastern Route to summit
Loop length: 8.2 miles round trip
Degree of difficulty: Strenuous
Elevation Gain: 1,100 feet

Trails symbols for walk, hike, run, dogs on leash, cyclists and equestrians

Park Notes

  • This 1,100-acre park in southeast Santa Rosa offers panoramic views of Santa Rosa from its western flank and the Mayacamas Mountains from its summit. The land historically was used for ranching, and cattle grazing continues in the park. A new Petaluma Hill Road entrance and trailhead opened in 2015.
  • Portable restrooms are available at both the Kawana Terrace and Petaluma Hill Road entrances. No drinking water.

Trail Notes

  • The park has two main routes to the mountain’s mid-section (the Eastern and Western Routes) and one route to the summit (Eastern Route.) The Eastern approach involves a steep climb over open grasslands. The Western approach is a more gradual ascent through oaks.
  • The new 1.2-mile Red Tail Trail along Petaluma Hill Road is a lovely looped hike on its own or as an extension of a longer hike via the Western Route.
  • You likely will encounter cattle on your walk. Just give them a wide berth and pass by.

Trail Directions

  • Option 1: Take the Western Route to the right (south) of the water tanks at the Kawana Terrace parking lot. At .1 miles, turn right onto Todd Creek Trail and follow it for .7 miles. Merge onto the Western Route and follow it .8 miles, enjoying expansive views of Santa Rosa. Turn right onto the Eastern Route and take the .9-miles ascent to the summit. (Quite steep, so pace yourself.) Rest at the summit and enjoy the views: Santa Rosa
    and the Coastal Range to the west, Rincon Valley to the northeast and Bennett Valley to the southeast. Return the same way or take Eastern Route all the way down.
  • Option 2: Begin the hike as described above. After merging onto the Western Route from Todd Creek Trail, go .1 miles and turn right onto a loop off the Western Route. Go about another .1 miles and turn right onto the Red Tail Trail connector for .2 miles. Follow it to the Red Tail loop along Petaluma Hill Road. Walk the 1.2-mile loop and return via the connector to the Western Route and continue your hike to the summit.

Driving Directions

Kawana Terrace entrance:

  • From southbound Highway 101 in Santa Rosa, take the Hearn Avenue exit. Turn right onto Corby Avenue and right onto Hearn Avenue.
  • Turn left onto Santa Rosa Avenue.
  • Turn right onto Kawana Springs Road.
  • Turn right onto Franz Kafka Avenue.
  • Franz Kafka turns left and becomes Kawana Terrace.
  • Follow Kawana Terrace to the park entrance.

View Map and Get Directions

Trails Challenge logo

Thank you, Trails Challenge Hikers

Congratulations to everyone who completed this year's challenge. Hundreds of participants took to the trails this summer and fall to get healthy, spend time with family and friends, and discover new parks. We're already thinking up new Trails Challenge adventures for next year, and hope you'll join us again.

Download the Trails Guide to Use Year-Round:

Desktop edition (23 MB)
Mobile edition (7 MB)

Desktop Español (25 MB)
Mobile Español (7 MB)

Taylor Mountain Trail Map
PDF fileTrail Map (20.91 MB)

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