Skip to main content Skip to secondary navigation
Main content start

Visit Sam McDonald Park

Event Details:

Saturday, October 9, 2021
10:00am - 12:00pm PDT

This event is open to:


Join us on a refreshing hike with park ranger and interpretative specialist Katherine Wright through lush redwood forest to the cottage where Emanuel B. “Sam” McDonald (1884–1957), a beloved Stanford role model and benefactor, retreated on weekends away from Stanford. The walk to Sam’s house begins in the parking lot at the entrance to Sam McDonald Park (approx. 3 miles west of La Honda; put the above address in your GPS, which should still work, even though phone reception is poor). Our trek starts out for about 200 yards on a flat, wooded path which intersects with a wide gravel fire road on a slight uphill grade for another mile or so. The last .25 mile of the walk is on a wide dirt/gravel path that descends steeply about 300-400 feet in elevation to where Sam’s house sits on the bank of a creek. The house can only be visited from the outside but is still largely in its original state, probably dating to the 1920s. The entirety of the walk is well shaded under redwood trees, and the path is in-and-out, meaning you must be able to return the same way you go in. Total distance round trip is approximately 2.8 miles and would take an average person about 1.5-2 hours to walk without stopping. Closed-toe walking shoes with good tread are recommended.

Feel free to bring a brown-bag lunch. SHS will provide drinks and snacks as we gather at picnic tables after the hike.

Spaces are limited, SHS members will have priority in registration until October 1st.

Explore More Events