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Stanford University

Stanford Dish Trail

Trail and Park
Palo Alto
  • Magnus J.
    "Love running across the Stanford hills."(11 Tips)
    Margaret O.
    "The squirrels are really fat and they aren't afraid of anything"(7 Tips)
    RMi F.
    "Best to park near Stanford ave near Raimundo street on the weekends"(5 Tips)
    "Great hike 3.7 miles of hilly paved path."(13 Tips)
79 Tips and reviews
  • hills
  • hiking
  • trails
  • scenic views
  • fresh air
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  • Eddy B.
    Eddy BMarch 2, 2013
    Been here 50+ times
    3.5 mile hike/run with some hills. Beautiful view of valley. Paved the whole way. One con is finding parking at times (though on weekend you can park at nearby elementary school). Other con no shade
  • Munem
    MunemSeptember 5, 2013
    360' sunrise scenes are amazing. It doesn't matter what direction you start, but probably better to go clockwise to get the extra steep terrain out of the way first.
  • Xin N.
    Xin NiuNovember 13, 2015
    This is a great tail for some weekend walking. The view is awesome and it's not too tiring. A good place to go to. Park on Stanford Avenue or on nearby streets.
  • Caroline D.
    Caroline DengJune 6, 2015
    It's a great place for an easy hike with nice views of Silicon Valley. The beginning route has very little shade, so make sure to bring water, a hat, and sunscreen!
  • Jesse J.
    Jesse JohnstonNovember 17, 2014
    Fun loop hike for when you only have 30-45 minutes to exercise but want a great workaround. Be aware though that there are no facilities on or near the trail, so go the bathroom before visiting.
  • Suzy C.
    When you live/work in the Peninsula and need to get outside - this is a great loop to walk. There is zero shade, so bring a hat and sunglasses. If it's 80+ degrees, skip it.
  • Jennifer E.
    Jennifer EvansMarch 30, 2015
    Beautiful hike that takes about an hour. Great views of the bay on a clear day. Go early for parking!
  • Robert G.
    Robert GaalAugust 11, 2014
    Probably the best place to run in the bay area because you can see all parts of it from here. Lots of uphill terrain though so prepare to be exhausted.
  • Bohyun S.
    Bohyun SuhMay 18, 2015
    fresh air, beautiful scenery. If you walk with a normal pace, hiking takes about 1h 20m
  • Elliott D.
    Elliott DanczakFebruary 29, 2012
    At the fork, go left. It's all a big circle but this way you get a hike up front and a casual stroll at the end. It's like the mullet of trails.
  • Austin W.
    Austin WestermannJanuary 30, 2015
    Climb the hill! It's so worth it even on hot days. Quite the workout and your reward is spectacular views of the Bay Area
  • Marcos
    MarcosMarch 8, 2015
    Great hike 3.7 miles of hilly paved path. Only drawback is parking which in short supply. One can park at the school 1/8 mile away
  • Derrick Y.
    Derrick YuNovember 19, 2015
    There isn't much shade, so come early or in the winter. Parking is limited but on weekends you can park at the elementary school on Stanford Ave.
  • RMi F.
    RMi FloresOctober 5, 2015
    Nice, easy paved trail overlooking the Peninsula. Best to park near Stanford ave near Raimundo street on the weekends
  • Elliott D.
    Elliott DanczakFebruary 29, 2012
    Go left at the fork, you'll just be coming back around anyway. This way you get a mullet-trail, hike at first and casual stroll and the end.
  • Alex V.
    Alex VasilenkoSeptember 4, 2012
    Off payment parallel parking along the street at Stanford Ave. Gate closes at 7 pm, exit by 7:30 pm. Round loop takes ~1,5h in a good walking pace. Plan your hike accordingly.
  • Caroline D.
    Caroline DangsonAugust 10, 2011
    At the fork, go left if you want to start with an intense climb with an easier finish. Go right if you want a gradual climb. Either direction, this trail provides a challenging run.
  • carolyn w.
    carolyn williamsFebruary 28, 2013
    Been here 50+ times
    A coyote on the trail came within 20 yards of us before veering off. Bold! Yell and wave your hands to get them less casual around humans.
  • Kevin D.
    Kevin DuffieldJune 5, 2014
    Good workout and views. Can be busy on the weekends. Never seen a mountain lion ;)
  • Kathleen
    KathleenFebruary 16, 2016
    Good luck finding parking! On the weekends and during non-school hours, it's okay to park in the school parking lot.
  • Soumya S.
    Soumya SJuly 10, 2012
    Been here 25+ times
    Pro tip: run down the back side of the hill for a great view of the mountains. Warning: not for the faint of heart.
  • Mike P.
    Mike PeggJuly 19, 2015
    All gates and access to the Dish Trail closed until Aug 16/2015
  • Magnus J.
    Magnus JernJune 10, 2016
    Love running across the Stanford hills. A must for every valley visit.
  • M R.
    M RMay 30, 2015
    Great outdoor workout, just know that they don't let anyone in after 7:30 pm
  • Runqiu C.
    Runqiu CaiOctober 22, 2014
    As of October, trail closes at 6pm and they kick you out by 6:30
  • Gwen M.
    Gwen MommejaSeptember 9, 2012
    Very nice and safe trail! Beautiful view of the bay area and SF
  • Jennifer D.
    Jennifer DevineAugust 21, 2011
    You'll see lots of interesting sights from squirrels and hawks to interesting people. Rumor has it the dish was an old UFO research site.
  • Angel V.
    Angel VortexJuly 14, 2014
    Unfortunately you need to leave the park before 8:00pm. Some amazing view out there though.
  • Eddy B.
    Eddy BApril 9, 2013
    Been here 50+ times
    Be careful about cops when driving east on Stanford Ave after your run. On weekdays ~8am a police car seems to regularly be hiding right before Peter Coutts intersection
  • Sergey V.
    Sergey VorontsovMay 13, 2016
    Been here 5+ times
    Max elevation on the trail is 527 ft, up from 170 ft at the Campus Dr entrance or 175 ft at the Stanfor Ave one.
  • Samara T.
    Samara TrillingJuly 3, 2012
    Been here 10+ times
    In July all the baby ground squirrels are squirreling around being a generally adorable nuisance
  • Al S.
    Al SmithJanuary 16, 2015
    Hiking is great. The views are fantastic.
  • Karla
    KarlaAugust 28, 2013
    Been here 50+ times
    Open/Close times vary by month based on how much daylight there is.
  • Eddy B.
    Eddy BFebruary 18, 2013
    Been here 50+ times
    Great 3.5 mile run. Once you're halfway you are forced to run the entire distance #goodexercisetrick
  • Meg
    MegJanuary 19, 2014
    With the weekend masses. Parking is slim at both entrances.
  • Ken T.
    Ken TurkowskiFebruary 7, 2012
    Been here 50+ times
    Great leg and cardiopulmonary workout. Try arm weights to add an upper body workout.
  • Laurie H.
    Laurie HastingsNovember 27, 2011
    You can see all kinds of wildlife such as hawks and tarantulas
  • Lindsay E.
    Lindsay EyinkSeptember 19, 2011
    On you way back from Appke, hike up to "The Dish" and have a nice look at Silicon Valley.
  • Stanford University
    A 150 ft radio telescope gathers intergalactic data and marks the halfway point for this 3.3 mile hiking trail with challenging hills and inspiring views. Read more
  • Kei
    KeiAugust 17, 2014
    Good hike. Come early for parking.
  • pixarina
    pixarinaJune 25
    4 miles of hilly fresh air and great company.
  • Nadine M.
    Nadine MansourAugust 20, 2013
    Been here 10+ times
    If you're afraid of squirrels, enter at your own risk
  • Tiffany C.
    Tiffany ChungApril 28, 2014
    Been here 5+ times
    Take the right fork at the beginning of the trail!
  • Karla
    KarlaAugust 10, 2013
    Been here 50+ times
    Make sure there is nothing visible in your car- it's not uncommon to see a parked car with a smashed window :-(
  • Margaret O.
    Margaret O'LearyJanuary 24, 2013
    Been here 5+ times
    The squirrels are really fat and they aren't afraid of anything
  • Tatiana L.
    Tatiana LutzJanuary 22, 2016
    My favorite trail in the Valley.
  • Tom M.
    Tom MaxwellJanuary 12, 2015
    Beautiful views at the top.
  • Ed C.
    Ed CampbellAugust 18, 2014
    Been here 10+ times
    Perfect day for doing the dish trail!
  • Nedumaran R.
    Nedumaran RajagopalMarch 26, 2010
    Go straight to hill from the entrance, very steep and reward yourself a good exercise.
  • Shauna H.
    Shauna HarrisonSeptember 9, 2011
    Been here 25+ times
    Try adding hill intervals at Stanford Ave hill (run up/walk down) after you finish the loop
  • Ana D.
    Ana DelavegaFebruary 26, 2012
    Nice place and safe to go for training
  • Keegan Y.
    Keegan Y-VNovember 2, 2010
    Been here 5+ times
    A great way to unwind after or a long day. beautiful views and more
  • Arezou K.
    Arezou KeshavarzJanuary 3, 2016
    Great for a quick hike
  • Vy N.
    Vy NguyenAugust 6, 2015
    Hot, exposed and crowded.
  • Jennifer D.
    Jennifer DevineAugust 21, 2011
    Watch hawks devour their of life
  • Shadi N.
    Shadi NayyerNovember 1, 2011
    head to the right if you want an uphill workout!
  • carolyn w.
    carolyn williamsJune 5, 2013
    Been here 50+ times
    Spotted a coyote traveling through the hills today
  • Mihai P.
    Mihai ParparitaNovember 13, 2011
    Been here 10+ times
    Park at the nearby Lucille Nixon elementary school.
  • Gabe S.
    Gabe SumnerAugust 16, 2014
    Been here 5+ times
    Squirrels with no sense of self preservation.
  • Alice F.
    Alice FangJune 22, 2015
    COWS! & seeing the bay
  • Gurlygurl P.
    Gurlygurl PandaMay 10, 2011
    Great way to practice hill training.
  • Maile K.
    Maile KraussNovember 14, 2010
    Been here 10+ times
    Takes about an hour to walk the entire dish.
  • Alicia M.
    Alicia MJanuary 1, 2011
    good hill run, great views too!
  • Daniel P.
    Daniel PetersAugust 2, 2013
    Been here 5+ times
    Keep to the right. What's so difficult, people?
  • Denis v.
    Denis von KaepplerJanuary 12, 2012
    Been here 10+ times
    Awesome day
  • therealspidey P.
    therealspidey Peter ParkerJanuary 4, 2013
    Been here 5+ times
    Just the best!
  • Harry X.
    Harry XuFebruary 22, 2012
    very nice walk.
  • Shirley L.
    Shirley LiuAugust 19, 2012
    Wear sunblock!!
  • Shauna H.
    Shauna HarrisonAugust 15, 2011
    Been here 25+ times
    my little piece of heaven.
  • John B.
    John BlazeSeptember 22, 2013
    Don't be scurred. Run!!!
  • Jari S.
    Jari SalomaaDecember 12, 2009
    nice views to downtown SF on a clear day
  • Vivian Z.
    Vivian ZhangSeptember 9, 2016
    Not a strenuous trail
  • Ben S.
    Ben SykesAugust 20, 2011
    2. Hit the dish
  • Edgar C.
    Edgar ChuangSeptember 4, 2011
    Been here 5+ times
    Closing at 7pm now.
  • Doug B.
    Doug BaerJuly 21, 2015
    Been here 5+ times
    Closed until August 16, 2015
  • Joe A.
    Joe AdamJuly 9, 2011
    No Dogs Allowed. BOO!!!
  • Noah
    NoahApril 1, 2010
    Been here 5+ times
    Look for the little bunnies scampering about
  • Yosuke K.
    Yosuke KoikeJanuary 20, 2010
    Very hilly!
  • Kerry B.
    Kerry BodineDecember 6, 2009
    watch all the squirrels scurrying around
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