The popular Hardrock Trail Area is the historic heart of Empire Mine State Historic Park giving visitors access to 856 forested acres within downtown Grass Valley.
Only a mile from the heart of downtown Nevada City, this trail is wheelchair accessible up to Hirschman’s Pond. West of the pond, the trail narrows and meanders through oak woodlands, pines, and grasslands.
Wheelchair accessible Independence Trail East follows the gentle gradient of an old mining ditch and offers occasional views of the South Yuba River canyon and passes seasonal side streams and bogs.
Independence Trail West features several wooden flumes and is oriented for most of its length around the canyon of Rush Creek, a large tributary stream that enters the South Yuba River at Jones Bar.
Kenny Ranch is a large property west of Grass Valley with open meadows and a forested hillside that drops down toward Deer Creek on the north. In spring, look for outstanding wildflowers on ridge meadows.
Located off Rattlesnake Road in Grass Valley, this lovely, quiet forested walk with an irrigation canal and mining history was a joint project of the Rattlesnake Neighborhood Association and Bear Yuba Land Trust.
The Union Hill Trail Area is part of the 800-acre Empire Mine State Historic Park, offering a number of less populated opportunities for hiking, jogging, bicycling and horseback riding.
Opened officially to the public in the spring of 2015, this volunteer built Land Trust trail offers views of snow-capped peaks and the confluence of the Middle Yuba River and North Yuba River with a moderately challenging 4.5 mile round trip hike with a 500-foot elevation gain.