Big Pines Trail is a 25.3 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Carmel-by-the-Sea, California that features a great forest setting and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking and walking and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail.
The Big Pines Trail was once a shaded trail through a beautiful Ponderosa forest with a wonderful camp on Danish Creek. In 2008 lightning started the Basin Fire which burned very hot in Big Pines and killed most of the Ponderosa Pines and has made the area unsafe for camping due to dead tree hazards. Big Pines Camp is overgrown and no longer a campsite. The trail was re-opened in 2011 by the Ventana Wilderness Alliance but dead trees will be falling for the next thirty years so you will need to check the Ventana Wilderness Alliance web page for current trail conditions. It is not recommended to hike this trail during high winds or to camp anywhere among the dead trees; Pat Springs Camp is a good alternative campsite to Big Pines Camp about one mile from Big Pines Camp.
The walk is about 8.5 miles from Los Padres Dam.
Please practice Leave No Trace camping.