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Hiking in and around Northstar California is a fun way to spend your days in the mountains. Whether you ride the lifts to the top and hike around on the ridges or stay low and hike through the Martis Valley, the views, scenery and fresh air are always refreshing.
In summer, hikers pay a nominal fee ($6 in 2011) to ride three lifts primarily serving mountain bikers.
Dogs are allowed to hitch a ride in the enclosed cars of the Big Springs Gondola and Zephyr Express lifts, which access trails for every ability level (a supplied map identifies which trails are hiking only and which are designated for mountain bikes.)
The Lookout Trail to the top of Lookout Mountain offers great panoramic views of the Pacific Crest and Martis Valley. Don’t forget to bring pickup bags, your picnic lunch and plenty of water for the both of you. From the top of the Zephyr Express, follow the trail signs to Lookout Mountain.
• Distance: 2.4 miles
• Difficulty: Moderate