This site is closed due to Covid 19.

hiking
bugs
over grown
11 days ago

IMPORTANT: the significant portion of this trail is over grown with tall vegetation. This means TICKS and stinging nettle. For some part, you cannot even see the trail. Had I known this information, I would never do this hike. The only good part was I only saw one other hiker for 16 miles. Other than over grown trails, this hike is a blast. You start in forest like vegetation then it takes you to the ocean. Beautiful trees, flowers ( a lot of bees), wild black berries...this is definitely a must do hike when there is actually a trail for you to follow. At the end of the hike. I got three ticks and 2 tick bites. I also got stinging nettle even though I was wearing long sleeves. Other notable beings shared the trail: 2 snakes (one baby and one adult), 2 rabbits, one deer, various birds and bees.

Amazing trail! Great views

Bear Valley trail a little dull but beautiful loop otherwise. Nice entry from oddly named Rift Zone trail.

I did a clockwise loop and added some bonus miles at arch rock because of the trail closure already mentioned. Pelican lookout (the small out and back at the southern end-not sure if that’s the right name) is also closed. The single track trails greenpicker ect are a bit overgrown and muddy. Highlights included alamere falls, whale and dolphin sightings, lots of wildflowers and an hour lunch on wildcat beach in the sunshine.

hiking
off trail
washed out
3 months ago

Beautiful coastline and if possible find access to less traveled spots to discover the hidden tide pools full of beautiful-treasures. The way back can be tricky, so carefully map out your return back so you don’t end up walking on roadside. Start early so you have more coast and tide pools too.

hiking
muddy
4 months ago

Overall, a really nice hike. A few down trees but nothing too difficult to maneuver. Bring layers. VERY MUDDY. I did the hike in trail runners but my feet were soaked within 2 miles of the trailhead.

This trailer is super well maintained. As stated by previous reviewer, Crystal Lake Trail was in fact closed. Just ended up doing an extra little bit to go around it. Definitely don’t miss the arrowhead of rocks on the ground for alamere falls, that was really pretty. Everything has been weed-whacked down so there wasn’t really tall grass like the previous reviewer said. Overall this trail was absolutely breathtaking and I highly recommend. Would do it again in a heartbeat!!

Great hike. Lots of poison oak on many trails. Gorgeous day. Trail conditions were good and not too many folks on the higher elevations which was nice for quiet reflection. Beautiful coastal view small part of the trail.

Amazing hike. Camped at sky camp which was secluded and quiet. Went to see the sunrise at Mt. Wittenberg and then headed for the loop. The weather was gorgeous and so were the views of the pacific. The trail is steep with a full pack but manageable. Parked at the Bear Valley Visitor Center.

There is only a small part of the trail that allows bikes

Trail is nothing special. It is nicely marked and maintained. There was water faucet at each camping point, but there was not any sign indicating it is drinkable or not! I drank it anyway. There are lots of mosquitos! I just saw a very little cute rabbit and some birds. I didn’t see any other animals. I took some short cuts, and finished 22 miles in a day (9AM-6PM). The whole trail is like 30 miles which I don’t think can be finished in one daylight, then if you are going there take camping gears.

hiking
10 months ago

I did this loop with 4 friends. The parts we liked the most are Alamere Falls and sculpture Beach. Of course, we also love the forests.

hiking
no shade
over grown
11 months ago

Definitely recommend doing this the opposite way, with the large climb at the beginning it makes for a really enjoyable day. This hike has a little of everything. It’s not technical at all really, just long, but the views, the terrain, are all world class. The trail is getting overgrown at points so wear long pants and long sleeves, and once you get to the coast there can be a lot of sun and no shade. AMAZING TRAIL!

hiking
muddy
over grown
11 months ago

Park of the coastal trail were very overgrown. Wear long pants to avoid poison oak. Especially if you go Sculpture Beach. That was VERY over grown. And soggy at the end. But the beach was worth the .5 mile detour.

Note: the Crystal Lake trail has apparently been closed for some time so I was not able to take it and it required a detour on the coastal trail that probably added another mile or so. All in my Strava registered 22 miles on the dot and slightly less elevation gain than is noted here but I also skipped the second detour (after the falls). I hiked this counterclockwise as suggested by AllTrails. The trail to Glen Camp and Wildcat campground were in great shape, not muddy, very clear and had plenty of shade (although Day was overcast anyway). Only thing is that this version of the trail to wildcat meanders a lot so I had to keep taking phone out to check the direction I needed to take. Saw very few people here other than some backpackers that stayed at the campgrounds overnight. Just before Wildcat you start picking up the Coast Trails and they are quite a bit more exposed. Wasn’t an issue today but on a hot sunny day will be baking. Wildcat has additional water if you start to run low at this point (I brought 3.5L and was fine). Trail mostly in good condition though a bit overgrown / has high grass in a few places. Starts to get a lot busier when I meets up with the coastal trail again closer to the falls. Don’t miss the random little spur to Alamere - it’s makes by a big arrow made of rocks on the trail. The last part was by far the hardest. Most people are walking back from the falls to the parking lot at the end of the coastal trail - very few go up back to the ridge at this point. I look the Lake Ranch Trail (Or something like that) which was pretty overgrown. It was a nice trail but had several trees downed which required diverting through bushes and the grass was up to my waist in many places. Ran into absolutely no one here at all. All in all a good trail with a big mix of scenery and solid elevation profile but would probably double back from the falls and take one of the other trails back up rather than the one I took.

Meadow trail was very gradual and forgiving for an early climb in the trail. Sky trail was very relaxed and had great views of meadows and redwoods. Baldy Trail was overgrown with stinging nettle and poison oak. Don’t wear shorts on if you intend to go that route.

Beautiful scenery, and a great hike. I started on the Bear valley trail, then branched onto the Mt. Wittenberg trail, to Z ranch trail, then the Horse trail onto the Sky camp trail, to Woodward valley trail to the Coast trail, and then finished back on the Bear valley trail for a 16 mile loop. I saw Deer, a jack rabbit, snakes, lizards, butterflies, dragonflies, many birds and flowers and a lot of beautiful trees. Walking along the coast and having ocean views was amazing. Sculpture beach is a really cool place for lunch! All in all it’s a great hike.

Nicely varied trail, starting and ending in woodland and a long middle section along the coast. This is one of the longer loops from the visitor center without needing to backtrack, so it's a nice full day. The meadow and valley trails are great for wildlife, try to hit them early or late in the day for best viewing chances. The section on Bear Valley trail is busy and kind of boring, consider an alternative for that part.

hiking
Sat Mar 30 2019

Knocked this one out in a day. Scenery was beautiful - the trail was well-marked and well maintained.

Took the reverse here. Started early (8am) on A Sunday from Bear Valley. We did not see any people at all until about 9:30, but which time we were nearly to the Sky Trail. Divide Meadow was gorgeous in the light of the rising sun, so quiet, full of birdsong. The hike up Old Pine was magical--felt like it was our own private forest. We couldn't get over the sunlight on the new greenery (see photos). It was a gradual enough climb--very comfortable. There were some very wet and muddy spots in the trail so we were grateful for our waterproof hiking boots. Sky Trail had some beautiful views of Limantour Spit in a light fog. We hiked up to the peak of Mt Wittenberg, but as others have said, you can't really see much from up there. But good views elsewhere. Saw chipmunk, red-tail hawk, black-tailed deer, a small lavender blue butterfly, possibly a Sierra Nevada blue. Wildflowers were just starting--lots of iris, poppy, lupines, monkey flower. Mt Wittenberg trail was all downhill, mostly very well maintained, but a little muddy, and a little but of a knee-strain toward the bottom. My iPhone app said it was about a 7 mile hike. It was just such a joy to see all the water and the green everywhere after so much drought.

backpacking
muddy
Thu Mar 21 2019

Just completed this one with a couple friends 3-21 - 3-23. We had a lot of fun. We didn't do the exact trail on here but still ended up clocking about 28.5 miles over 3 days. Wildcat is an awesome campground. Stayed at site 5 and it was pretty solid. Good privacy and space for a few tents. Make sure you get a fire permit at the visitor center so you can get a fire going on the beach, just be aware of the tides. We also day hiked to Alamere Falls (5 miles trip) and it was awesome. The falls are raging right now. Next day we packed up and headed out to Coast camp. We stayed at site 12 and it seemed pretty cool. It ended up raining basically the entire day so spent most of the day in tents. Seemed like a cool campground but didn't get to enjoy it much. The hiking was good. It's a pretty steady hike and not that hard. I'd say a great trip for a beginner backpacker. There's some elevation but nothing that hard to handle. A lot of mud on the trails right now and be aware of poison oak. Overall, super enjoyable. I'd love to do this again with better weather and take advantage of the fires on the beach, that's an awesome perk in this area.

I love this trail

hiking
Sat Aug 04 2018

All of the camps have potable water and are well spaced. I carried a water filter but did not need to use it. Lake Ranch Trail is very overgrown but easily passable. No issues with ticks despite the high grass. Other trails are all very well maintained and appear to have been cut back recently. This was a really enjoyable walk, lots of variety and overall not too difficult. Primarily shaded just the short beachfront section has little. I went anti-clockwise to try and get down the water with reasonably early morning light. Additionally it’s always nice not to be stuck with a heavy uphill right at the end. I’d swap the short jaunt to the lake for a walk down to Alamere Falls. It’s worth a quick look but expect it to be busy.

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