Last Sunday I hiked Mission Peak! I wanted to hike it since moving here because I always see photo of my friends at the summit and it looked cool. It also seems like something you gotta do at least once if you live in the Bay Area. So Brandon, Amihan and I set out right at the crack of dawn to summit the 3-mile (6 miles round trip), 2500 ft peak in Fremont.
The original plan was to hike pre-dawn and catch the sunrise at the peak, but the trail did not open until 6am. We figured if we can’t catch the sunrise, it would still be cool to hike it early in the morning to beat the crowd. Turns out, a lot of people had the same idea as us and we were probably the fiftieth car to arrive at the trailhead at 6:15.
I’ve heard some people say the hike is difficult and some say it’s easy, and honestly it was a little harder than I had expected. The ascend started the second we got on the trail and it only got steeper until we reached the peak. For the most part, it was pretty manageable to go at a steady pace, with the last half mile being more strenuous and gets you a little more out of breath. The trail itself is a dirt road the first 2.5 miles or so, and the last half mile becomes more rocky.
After roughly two hours, we finally reached the peak! There was the iconic post with pipes sticking out of it and everyone taking pictures with it. We were able to see so far onto the Peninsula to the west and inland to the east. The view itself was cool because of the vastness of everything surrounding Mission Peak and the imminent storm that was brewing. On the west side of the peak it was extremely windy with dark clouds, but on the east side it was clear and sunny skies. We huddled on the east side because it was just way too cold in the shade and against the wind.
The entire hike took roughly 3 hours. By the time we got back to the car it was only 9:30 and we’ve already accomplished so much! We got ourselves some delicious breakfast in Fremont and continued on with the rest of our Sunday.
Overall, I thought the Mission Peak hike was enjoyable and the views up top were cool to see. Now that I’ve hiked it, I can attest that it’s not a walk in the park, but definitely doable in a couple of hours. It’s also very accessible from San Francisco being within one hour from the city. I would recommend people to hike it at least once.