bleeding heartsBleeding hearts
Sweeney Ridge Hiking Trails

Christine Case, Skyline College

The Notch Trail

The trail leaves from the south side of Skyline College (at Parking Lot C). Map to Skyline College.
Round-trip: 4.2 miles
Elevation change: 695 feet


From highway 280: take the Westborough exit in South San Francisco. Drive west on Westborough (it becomes Sharp Park Blvd.) to College Drive.

From Highway 35: turn west on Sharp Park Blvd. in San Bruno. Follow Sharp Park Blvd. about three-fourths mile to College Drive.

From highway 1: drive east on Sharp Park Blvd to College Drive.

During the first mile, you will overlook the S. F. County Jail, walk through a former Coast Guard Reservation, and traverse two 35% slopes. Go down slowly and rest frequently going up. Two trails are visible going up the south­facing side - one is wide, the other follows a water run­off. Both trails come out at the same place and both are steep.

Studying the landscape is a great excuse for rest stops! Notice the south­facing slope has sparser, low­growing vegetation compared to the greener, more dense vegetation on the north­facing slope. Vegetation on the north­facing slope is also more varied. The north­facing slope is protected from the sun during long, warm afternoons and plants can retain more moisture. Vehicles using this area 30 years ago have worn the vegetation away. During heavy rains, soil washes down these slopes creating larger areas devoid of vegetation.

This trail meets the Mori Ridge Trail after about 1 mile. Turn left to reach the Discovery Site. When you reach the Portolá Discovery Site you can do some exploring.