Join us during President Day's week-end as we hike, explore, and do a bit of sightseeing along the California coast from Cambria to Big Sur. I will be heading over on Friday the 15th from Bakersfield to camp for three nights at Hearst San Simeon State Park which is located a couple of miles from Cambria. It is my understanding that you cannot reserve campsites at the particular State Park until the middle of March so it is on a first come basis...but...I don't anticipate any problems because it is a large State Park with overflow and more primitive campsites available in the park. If you would prefer not to camp out there are numerous hotels in the Cambria/San Simeon area including a Motel 6 in San Simeon.
Tentative Schedule: I use the word tentative and am including numerous options because of the conditions of the trails due to winter storms this time of the year. Sometimes, the trails in this area can be very muddy or closed due to storm activity so I suggest we be flexible this week-end. Also, there are a couple of other hiking possibilities which are not listed here that we might also check out if the trail conditions become a problem.
Saturday and Sunday: We will travel north to hike and stop at the places up as far north as Big Sur. I've included some of the places I intend to hike and visit along the way. We won't be able to go to all the places listed below but I do hope to as much as possible during the two days.
Monday: We will do a bit of sightseeing and perhaps go on a short hike near Cambria before we pack up and drive back home Monday afternoon sometime probably around 1:00.
Saturday and Sunday "potential tentative” hiking and sightseeing schedule:
Ewoldsen Trail to Canyon Falls and Overlook: Five mile loop hike with an elevation gain of 1600 feet near Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park.
McWay Falls: less than a mile loop hike to the famous waterfall which is featured in numerous nature related calendars of California. McWay falls is one of only two waterfalls on the west coast which drops directly onto the beach.
Preiffer Beach: Preiffer Beach is one of the most spectacular rugged, primitive beaches in California. Sometimes this beach is closed in the winter due to flooding but if it is open I would like to go here just to see the incredible site of the crashing waves against the rocks at the beach.
Vincent Flat Hike/Kirk Creek Trail: This is a 10.6 mile round trip hike with an elevation gain of 1700 feet. My guidebook has this to say about the hike, “This is one of the most scenic and diverse hikes in the Ventana Wilderness. There are sweeping views from the ocean to Cone Peak and as well as forested canyons which travels into wood-shaded ravines and meadowlands which reach the Hare Creek under a canopy of towering redwoods”.
Limekilns State Park and Falls: This is a 2.4 mile “easy” round trip hike to four massive stone and steel kilns used to purify quarried limestone into powered lime in the 1880’s”. This is my personal favorite hike on the Big Sur coastline and involves hiking along a creek which “flows under the shade of towering coastal redwoods with a lush mix of sycamores, oaks, and maples”. The last time I was in the area last year this hike was closed due to trail maintenance therefore I will need to check to make sure this trail is currently accessible.
Andrew Molera State Park: Andrew Molera is a beautiful State Park located just north of Big Sur. There is a ridge trail we could hike which will provide us with views of the Pacific ocean..
View of Molera State Park from the ridge trail
Important Notes: Because the campground is located just a couple of miles from Cambria those who are interested may choose to eat out rather than cook. There are many fine restaurants, café’s, bakeries, and a few inexpensive places to eat. I intend to eat dinner in Cambria each evening. Also, this trip will be cancelled if it is raining this week-end. Last year we had to cancel this trip but if it is cancelled I hope to reschedule in April.