Moore Creek Trail to Overlook is a 1.1 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Santa Cruz, California that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, running, nature trips, and bird watching and is accessible year-round.

Length1.1 miElevation gain49 ftRoute typeOut & back
Wheelchair friendlyKid friendlyStroller friendlyHikingNature tripsBird watchingRunningBeachViewsWildflowersWildlifeNo dogs
Description
Waypoints (0)

According to Access Northern California (http://accessnca.org/access-northern-california/explore/explore-detail-view/?site_id=58): In fall and winter, up to 150,000 monarch butterflies come to Natural Bridges State Park from the northern United States and southern Canada to roost and mate. During these months you can see thousands of butterflies fluttering through the park’s eucalyptus groves or hanging from the trees in clusters. In warmer sunny days the butterflies take flight, and against the background of green branches they look like airborne stained-glass ornaments. Even when the butterflies aren't visiting, there is plenty to do here. You can hike through coastal scrub to a vista point or visit the beach, where you will see the last of the three “bridges”—natural formations carved by waves from the sandstone bluffs the park was named for (the others have fallen). Two prominent observation areas, one at the end of West Cliff Drive, the other a few hundred feet from the entrance, are good places to watch the sunset and waves crash ashore, and possibly catch a glimpse of a whale during migration season, mid-October to March. Interactive displays at the Visitor Center provide information about monarch butterflies and about marine life and tidepools. Outside is a milkweed display that demonstrates the monarch's lifecycle. The center is open most weekends and some weekdays; call (831) 423-4609 for hours and event information. A wheelchair is available for use on the Monarch Trail. The difficulty rating for this trail is based on what the experience may be like for a wheelchair or stroller user. ACCESSIBILITY: If you drive, enter at West Cliff Drive and park at the visitor center, then travel past the center several hundred feet on Natural Bridges Drive (closed to cars) to the trailhead on your left. The lot serving the beach boardwalk and the one before the park's entrance have no designated handicapped-accessible parking spaces. If you take transit, use the pedestrian-only entrance at Natural Bridges Drive and Delaware Avenue, and proceed 0.25 miles to the trailhead. There are wheelchair-accessible restrooms at the Visitor Center/museum and picnic area. The Visitor Center restroom offers the best access. The restroom by the picnic area has grab bars and a wide stall but no maneuvering space. You can call (831) 423-4609 to reserve a beach wheelchair. At the accessible picnic area there is water, barbecue grills, and shade. You can pick up a brochure for self-guided tours at the visitor center. The Moore Creek Trail travels through low bushes across somewhat rough terrain to a lovely vista point with benches. The ocean and natural bridge can be seen in the distance. From here the trail becomes inaccessible as it travels steeply downhill to the beach. This part of the park is great for bird-watching and nighttime star-gazing. Across from the visitor center is the Monarch Trail, a wheelchair-accessible interpretive boardwalk that travels down through the Monarch Butterfly Nature Preserve for about an eighth of a mile to an observation deck. It's mostly shaded by eucalyptus trees and has numerous rest areas with benches. The Delaware Street entrance gate has a clearance of about 25 inches, and a 90-degree turn may make it challenging to maneuver some wheelchairs. Mostly firm with some bumps, rocks, roots, and small gopher-size holes. May be impassable in the rainy season.

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Reviews (16)
Photos (22)
Activities (20)
Completed (58)
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Ritu Singh
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Hiking

Was okay! More like a stroll in a park.

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elisabeth lampi
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Hiking

No dogs allowed signs everywhere. If there's a dog-friendly trail here, i couldn't find it.

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Keri Sturges Anderson
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Hiking

Nice little hike down to Natural Bridges .

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Jesus Magana
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Hiking
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Sergio Manzo
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Hiking
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geo grins
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Hiking
First to Review

Went on a ~1 mile hike, lured by two great horned owls and a geocache! This is a great trail for a low-mileage hike with lots of birds to see! There is a lot of poison oak surrounding the trail, so best to stay on trail at all times here!

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Sumaira Nabeel
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Walking
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Camryn Crowley
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Hiking
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Gavin Robertson
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Hiking
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Wendy Werner
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Hiking
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AllTrails User
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Hiking
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Wayne Cheng
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Hiking
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Don Day
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Hiking
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Ben Hamner
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Hiking
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Samira Taba
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Hiking
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Myra Kapoulas
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Hiking
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