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Wild Recovery
San Jose, California
January 9 2016
Land of the Medicine Buddha
Santa Cruz County
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Land of the Medicine Buddha
January 9, 2016

The Place

The Land of Medicine Buddha (LMB) has an air of serenity that begins in the parking lot and only gets stronger as you amble deeper into the surrounding woods. The presence of the Buddhist retreat, made visible through colorful prayer flags and gentle reminders to keep voices low, gives a feeling of safety and community to this trail.

From the bridge at the end of Prescott Road, head up the hill to the left and look for the wide dirt trail that leads you into the forest. A small creek runs through a ravine down below and a thick canopy of redwoods and deciduous trees shades almost the entire length of trail. The forest floor is thick with ferns, and fallen logs sprout cities of mushrooms nestled on carpets of moss. Buddhist paintings and statues lie hidden inside the giant stumps of redwoods hollowed out by lightning. Watch your step for the occasional banana slug and enjoy this flat path while it lasts.

Walking The Walk

Level: 3 - Miles: 7.3 - Elevation: 1000'

Host: Nico R.

The Land of the Medicine Buddha (LMB) is an amazing hike through a beautiful Redwood Forest. We’ll start the hike with an easy warm up taking the 1 mile Eight Verses Loop Trail. The Eight Verses loop trail offers hikers the opportunity to meditate on thought transformation in a peaceful Redwood forest.

After finishing the loop we’ll continue on a 6 mile loop trail through the forest As you near the top, the forest begins to change from Redwood and Douglas Fir to groves of Oak trees.

From here on you’ll begin to see colorful prayer flags hung between the trees, some with small gold statues of Buddha tucked in the lower branches. The last part of this amazing hike will have a ravine to one side with a creek and flowing water surrounded by ferns.


The address is 500 Prescott Rd, Soquel, CA 95073. From San Jose Area take Highway 17 South towards Santa Cruz, merge on to CA-1 South towards Watsonville, Monterey. Take Exit 437 Porter Street, Bay Avenue. Turn Left onto Porter Street towards Soquel. Turn Right onto South Main Street. In 1.5 Miles turn Right on to Prescott Rd. In about a mile the destination is on your left. Please find parking along the street.

Know Before You Go:

Drive Time: 1 Hour; Parking is FREE but limited so try to carpool; Dogs are allowed on leash, Bring water, something to sit on and a jacket.

The Eight Verses of Thought Transformation: 1. Determined to obtain the greatest possible benefit from all sentient beings, who are more precious than a wish-fulfilling jewel, I shall hold them most dear at all times. 2. When in the company of others, I shall always consider myself the lowest of all, and from the depths of my heart hold others dear and supreme. 3. Vigilant, the moment a delusion appears in my mind, endangering myself and others, I shall confront and avert it without delay. 4. Whenever I see beings who are wicked in nature and overwhelmed by violent negative actions and suffering, I shall hold such rare ones dear, as if I had found a precious treasure. 5. When, out of envy, others mistreat me with abuse, insults, or the like, I shall accept defeat and offer the victory to others. 6. When someone whom I have benefited and in whom I have great hopes gives me terrible harm, I shall regard that person as my holy guru. 7. In short, both directly and indirectly, do I offer every happiness and benefit to all my mothers. I shall secretly take upon myself all their harmful actions and suffering. 8. Undefiled by the stains of the superstitions of the eight worldly concerns, may I, by perceiving all phenomena as illusory, be released from the bondage of attachment.

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