Stegner Bench is a large stone bench in a grassy meadow with stellar views of the Pescadero watershed all the way out to the San Mateo coastline. The bench makes for a fantastic rest stop or a picnic location. It is located in often overlooked Long Ridge Open Space Preserve and can be accessed either from the north via the Grizzly Peak parking area or from the south at a turnout along Skyline Hwy 35 where the Ridge Trail crosses the road. The hike from the north contains pleasant forest along Peters Creek while the trip from the south is more exposed with meadows and views virtually the entire way. It is about 4 miles roundtrip from the north and 3.5 miles roundtrip from the south. The bench is dedicated to Wallace Stegner, a Pullitzer-Prize winning author that advocated conservation of lands for public enjoyment. While the bench is a great destination any time of year, spring is perhaps the best when the hills are a vibrant green and wildflowers abound. Here are some photos of a hike to Stegner Bench from the south. Complete album here.
Complete photo album here.