Bald Rock is one of those “anytime” hikes. It’s a bit of a drive, but you pass through some beautiful scenery, and the hike is exceptionally short. Like, half a mile short.
Directions: From Sacramento, take Hwy. 70 north towards Oroville, California. In Oroville, turn right on Hwy. 162 and start driving up the mountain. Continue towards the little town of Berry Creek, California. Once you go over the pretty green bridge, you’re about 10-15 minutes from the right turn on Bald Rock Rd. Take that right, and follow it until you see the signs for Bald Rock on the left. If you have a GPS, you can type in Bald Rock Rd., Berry Creek, California. The parking lot holds perhaps 30 cars, and it’s seldom full in the morning. Towards the mid-afternoon, it can fill up on weekends.
From the trail head, you cross a little meandering creek, head through towering pines, and find yourself face to face with granite. Start heading up hill, and pick your path. We normally head left, but there’s no wrong way here. Just give a quick scout to your surroundings before you head too far up, so you can figure out where to rejoin the trail when you’re ready to head home.
The granite comes in all shapes and sizes here, from gigantic boulders to little swirly shapes you can sit on while you swing your feet and gaze out at the mountain tops. Looking at granite here is like looking at the clouds – endless possibilities. Is that a chicken? Nope, hamster. That’s Pringle Rock, obviously a chip of some sort. That’s a stegosaurus, petrified. There’s a giant’s bed. See what you can find! And don’t forget to look for the praying mantis! Ally has named him Javier. He’s friendly.