San Simeon State Park is one of the oldest units of the California State Park System. The coastal bluffs and promontories of the scenic park offer unobstructed views of the ocean and rocky shore. The park includes the Santa Rosa Creek Natural Preserve, the San Simeon Natural Preserve and the Pa-nu Cultural Preserve which were established in 1990. Santa Rosa Creek Preserve is an area which includes valuable riparian forests and coastal wetlands, that provide habitat for endangered Tidewater Goby. San Simeon Natural Preserve consists of vast wetlands, riparian areas, and several undisturbed native plant communities including unique mima mound topography. The Preserve is also the wintering site for monarch butterfly populations. The 13.7 acre Pa-nu Cultural Preserve contains the most significant archeological site within San Simeon State Park. The site has been dated to 5850 years before the present, and it contains significant evidence documenting prehistoric technology, subsistence practices and social organization over the course of several centuries. San Simeon State Park is located 35 miles north of San Luis Obispo on Highway 1, and 5 miles south of the Hearst San Simeon State Historical Monument Visitor Center. In addition to Hearst Castle tours, the Hearst Castle Visitor Center, and the Coastal Discovery Center, park activities include camping, hiking, picnicking, beach walking, windsurfing, kayaking, fishing, surfing, viewing elephant seals and tide-pooling.

Beautiful and peaceful. Wonderful walk.

hiking
1 month ago

Very nice trail. Fog in morning and sun in afternoon. Saw several whale blows about 1/2 mile out to sea.

Been down this trail 3-4 times. Really neat place to go to the beach.

hiking
2 months ago

Great trail, kinda hard to follow but definitely a great hike.

walking
2 months ago

Very nice. This is a wonderful area and not overly crowded.

It has potential. The trail isn't marked very well but, thankfully, we had the app and decent cell service. It is very overgrown and the trail was washed out in places. We only went a short bit past the bridge that crosses the marsh before giving up because of the weeds and poison oak - less than half a mile. One of my daughters ended up with a tick on her. Mostly disappointing but if I hear that the trail has been worked on, I'll give it another go.

It was a beautiful trail. We saw a family of deer by the wetlands. There was a lot of poison oak all over the trail. One person from our group found a tick.
But, overall it was a beautiful hike.

Beautiful walk with ocean views. Park at the end of the path with trees and places to sit over looking the ocean.

A nice relaxing wooden mile long boardwalk along the beach featuring plants and some lizards and an occasional rabbit. Very romantic

Dogs NOT allowed. Soooo overgrown with pricked and poison oak. Was so thankful when over and then I found ticks. Have NEVER pulled off so many.

Beautiful year round - a long and peaceful trail, great for dogs as well.

This was a challenging trail to locate. The path we took was 2.5 miles so what I"m reviewing is clearly not quite this trail. We began at the Washburn parking lot on the boardwalk. When the trail arrived at the road, we crossed it and went to the trail on the right (a "trail" sign near by). Another option was to not cross the road and pick up another trail that began with an informative sign next to this outlet. Neither trail was marked with a name so we were guessing. Without our phones to show us a good map, we guessed wrong and shouldn't have crossed the road. Picking up the trail across the road, we headed up the trail which follows the road to the campground (although you don't see it) As we were heading in the direction of the campground, we found a Y in the trail, and we opted to stay on the "main" trail going up the hill. (It turns out that other trail in the Y was the outlet of our loop) We arrived at the outer northern edge (left side) of the campground and continued along until we reached the far end. Rather than circling the campground and going south, we veered off to the left (north) to venture down into the creek area. Our trail had a sense of disuse but that was due to the overgrowth from a great winter. Occasionally we came across park signs which encouraged us. Always bearing to the left, we completed the loop, 2.5 miles, eventually finding the other part of the Y. WARNING: there was a lot of poison ivy present. Fortunately, it seemed it was ever only on 1 side of the trail and we were able to avoid contact. It was a great hike, easy with a steady climb (25 floors on the fitbit) but such a great sense of nature, the shaded forest, the open hillsides....nice variety.

As of April, 2017, you can't travel north on Highway 1 beyond the Ragged Point Inn due to numerous mud and rock slides from the previous winter. This very short hike provides a nice opportunity to enjoy the Big Sur coastline just outside of the closure. Starting from a small parking area on the west side of Highway 1, an old paved road descends and turns into a dirt path, headed for the beach. The trail fades when you approach San Carpoforo Creek, which descends out of the rugged Santa Lucia Mountains to the east and empties into the Pacific Ocean here. When we were here, the creek was several feet deep and flowing at a very high volume.
Turn right at the creek bank and head north on the beach, paralleling the creek. The beach narrows and is impassible at high tide, but during low tide you can continue north about 0.3 miles before you'll have to turn around.
This area was original part of Hearst Ranch, but was transferred to the state parks system in 2005 as part of a conservation agreement. There is also a small parcel of national forest land here, which is why you'll see the Los Padres National Forest signboard near the trailhead.

hiking
6 months ago