Afternoon Hike: Hatton Canyon Recreation Trail (~5 Miles, ~400 Feet)

  • May 9, 2014 · 4:30 PM
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Let's head out to the Hatton Canyon area in beautiful Carmel, CA.  Starting at Rio Road and Hwy 1 we'll hike up Hatton Canyon on our way towards Ocean Avenue where we'll drop down towards the beach for a scenic late evening stroll on our way back to our starting point.

After the hike we will visit RG Burgers for replenishment. We can eat inside or on the patio; although, it may be too chilly for the patio by that time.

Photo Credit: Ian Coats

Back Story
Hatton Canyon runs parallel to Highway 1 behind the Carmel High School. For over 40 years it was threatened by Caltrans whose engineers wanted to fill it in and build a freeway bypass. During the summer of 2001 Governor Gray Davis signed bill to turn the land over to California State Parks, ending a bitter and divisive controversy.

Hatton Canyon contains a rich diversity of habitats over its two-mile length. The upper region is a steep V-shaped gorge in a dense Monterey Pine forest. A little farther down, the east hillside of the canyon opens up into a broad grassland. The middle of the canyon features a fair sized meadow, bordered on the north by a grove of oaks. Farther down is a lush Monterey Pine forest with a perennial stream. As it approaches Carmel Valley, there are cottonwoods and a thick grove of willows covering a bulrush marsh.

If Caltrans had its way, everything along the main trail would have been buried 25-60 feet below the roadway. The hillsides in the upper canyon, in clear view of the existing highway, were to be carved beyond recognition. We can now rest assured that this diverse ecosystem will be preserved for all time.


Park & Ride Lot at The Crossroads Shopping Center
Corner of Hwy 1 and Rio Road
Carmel, CA

NOTE:  It may be dark by the time we finish. PLEASE bring your headlamps and/or flashlights with you so that you may safely illuminate the foot path ahead of you after dark. Dogs are OK.

Please be aware that we expect you to take responsibility for your safety while we are out on the trails.   Joining hikes with the Monterey Bay Area Hiking Group is entirely voluntary and participants assume the full risks associated with the activities.  It is each hiker's responsibility to ensure that he/she is in sufficient fitness and health to participate in the hiking activity, and to bring appropriate water, food, clothing, first aid, and navigation equipment for the conditions.  The Monterey Bay Area Hiking Group and the individual hike organizers make no representation or warranties about the quality, safety, or supervision of these activities.  We understand that your "Yes" RSVP to this event means you accept this.  For more information regarding safety, please refer to the Monterey Bay Area Hiking Group "About" section for more details.

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  • Phil

    Beautiful scenery. Long walk. After-hike meal at RG's really hit the spot for me.

    May 9

  • Dawn

    gorgeous evening and hike thanks Phil

    May 9

  • Renate M.

    Very nice hike! Perfect weather and a fun group. Thank you Phil.

    May 9

  • Brad W.

    Thanks Phil

    May 9

  • Phil

    Starting at 4:35.

    May 9

  • Waltraud (Ischa) D.

    sorry - unable to make it; until next time - ischa

    May 9

  • A former member
    A former member

    Still wanting to car pool from Salinas[masked]

    May 9

  • A former member
    A former member

    anyone want to carpool from Salinas?

    May 7

  • Waltraud (Ischa) D.

    One of my favorite walks; looking forward to Friday evening - ischa

    1 · May 7

  • jennifer j.

    Thanks again Phil for the awesome hike in Garland yesterday! When I look at directions for the Friday walk/hike to meet at the Crossroads it doesn't say where specifically. Thanks, Jen

    May 5

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