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Partington Cove Trail

MODERATE 157 reviews

Partington Cove Trail is a 1.1 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Big Sur, California that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking and nature trips and is accessible year-round.

Distance: 1.1 miles Elevation Gain: 347 feet Route Type: Out & Back

hiking

nature trips

beach

river

views

waterfall

no dogs

Please note that portions of this trail are open as of March 2019. The Waterfall portion of the trail remains closed. All of trails in the park also remain closed. Please see park website for most up-to-date information on trail closures: https://www.parks.ca.gov/?page_id=29841 A hike down a steep road that will take you over a wooden bride and through a tunnel to a view of the protected Partington Cove. The hike back up the hill will be steep, but is short. There is a lovely quick side trip to a river if you take the path left of the wildlife sign before the bridge. Highly recommend--it's peaceful and secluded, and you can take some time to enjoy the shade and the sound of the water.

hiking
1 month ago

Beautiful short fun trail! The 3 separate paths at the bottom made it fun to explore and exciting to see what was at the end of each trail. The paths were more narrow so the trees and leaves did brush up against you as you traveled through the path. Would recommend wearing a long sleeve or having a long sleeve flannel. We spent about 45 mins on this hike and our favorite trail part was the far right path! Would def come back around 6pm or 7pm when it was less crowded!

hiking
2 months ago

BEAUTIFUL cove and ocean views!!! Steep but it's so short that it's okay.

hiking
over grown
rocky
3 months ago

Steep with a happy ending

hiking
3 months ago

for a short hike it sure delivers on views and gets right up next to the ocean.

hiking
3 months ago

Nice, short, steep trail with variety and pretty views. My previous experiences with this trail would have been five stars. But now I’m giving it only three stars because it was HEAVILY, HEAVILY trafficked by large groups of people without trail or backcountry etiquette. I found it hard to enjoy the nature experience with individuals yelling to each other from a distance and groups “hogging” the view for endless selfies.

recorded Partington Cove Trail

hiking
3 months ago

Such a beautiful view at the end!

hiking
3 months ago

Busy busy trail, cool tunnel and bridge though.

hiking
rocky
scramble
3 months ago

hiking
4 months ago

Good trail to explore the bottom of the cliffs at the ocean.

4 months ago

Very nice short trail with beautiful views. We saw a sea otter devouring its lunch. Highly recommend for a little walk, I would rate it between easy (trail quality) and moderate (in terms of fitness - short though so I think its almost doable for everyone).

hiking
5 months ago

The trail is a little steep on the way out. It might be hard for the elderly on a hot day. Kids could handle it though.

hiking
5 months ago

Beautiful, steep hike!

hiking
5 months ago

Nice well defined trail, good for the whole family. The trail forks to the right or left. To the left is towards the waterfall however there is still multiple down trees and it’s pretty much impassable with the family but if you’re own your own and in shape you can follow the creek up scrambling. Off the main trail if you go right or opposite the waterfall you come to another fork. To the left you cross a bridge and go through a cool tunnel. A few minutes later you end up at the ocean with nice views, if you go over to the right you will see the sea otters. Back on the fork if you choose to go right opposite the tunnel it leads you to a nice cove area, which the river flows into the ocean. Very nice spot that has more room and less populated.

hiking
6 months ago

Despite the steep climb on the path out we did this trail with young kids and the whole family really enjoyed it. Amazing river, bridge, cave passage, ocean side view and sea otters. All in was about an hour and 15 minute hike but we had little legs with us.

hiking
blowdown
6 months ago

2/25/19 Beautiful quick hike. The trail splits into 3 different sections, 1)waterfall trail, (tree had fallen and blocked reaching the waterfall), 2) through a cool tunnel opening to a gorgeous rocky viewpoint, 3) down the the rocky shore of a beautiful bay where the small stream joins the ocean. Quick and easy.

walking
8 months ago

Great short trail with the chance of seeing whales, otters, dolphins.

8 months ago

Pretty steep but it is very peaceful at the end.

9 months ago

Beautiful redwood grove at the end of a semi steep fire road. You’ll see fern and clover grotto, a stream, and end at ocean views and some tide pools left on the dock at low tide. Easy hike.

hiking
10 months ago

One of the best walk/hikes Ive ever done. The end down near the water is so gorgeous.

hiking
11 months ago

Scenery: 2 Views: 3.5 Difficulty: 3 Crowds: 3 Shade: 1 My 1-5 Rating Scale Comparisons for above: 5 for Scenery; Mcway Falls Julia Pfeiffer Burns SP 4.5 for Scenery: Berry Creek Falls Big Basin State Park 4 for Scenery: Steep Ravine Trail 5 for Views: Nimitz Trail Tilden Park 5 for Views: Ridge Trail San Bruno Mtn Park 4.5 for Views Montara Mtn Summit San Pedro County Park 4 for Views Rancho Canada Del Oro Bald Peaks trail 5 for Difficulty: Junipero Serra Peak 4 for Difficulty: Mount El Sombroso Loop Trail

hiking
Thursday, August 30, 2018

My son and I really enjoyed this hike. Loved the three different paths to take you into various parts of the flowing stream. We will be back again.

hiking
Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Paradise by the seashore. One of the most picturesque beach hikes I’ve ever done. Partington Canyon and cove was named for the Pioneer family who settled in the area in 1874. A moderate hike down to the cove through a short mountain tunnel and you find yourself in a late 19th Century “dog cove” where supplies were shipped and off loaded from the sea. There’s a comfy bench to take in the stunning views. You can still see the remnants of the wood and steel apparatus used to off-load supplies. If you take the other path (to the right) you will arrive at a beautiful rocky shore. We sat and watched sea otters frolicking in the water before us. Could have spent a whole day in this area. It’s not a long hike but the view is invigorating and inspiring. Not to be missed.

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Loved this hike!! Once you hike down the switchback You can go right and sit on the rocks by the beach and listen to the waves crash. You can go left and walking along the creek to a small waterfall. Or you can go straight and though the wooden tunnel (which is super rad!) and check out the beautiful cove. It’s beautiful and worth the trip. Be careful, poison oak is everywhere so I would recommend long pants. Going back up, the hill is steep but not too long, that’s the only “challenging” park of the hike.

Saturday, July 21, 2018

Too crowded, very short and not an amazing view. Not very challenging (rather easy than moderate).

hiking
Wednesday, July 18, 2018

It’s a favorite stop in Big Sur for me; three different areas for the hike down! Don’t forget the forest area, it’s awesome too!

Saturday, June 30, 2018

This trail was perfect for a small trip with much to see. It has a wonderful coastal view at two lookout points as well as a small waterfall.

Monday, June 25, 2018

hiking
Wednesday, June 20, 2018

This was my favorite stop in Big Sur. You hike down a mountain on a dirt path that has a few little offshoots/detours -- take them! One on the left leads to a beautiful stream in a shady meadow. Once you get to the cove, it's just so beautiful and amazing. Plan to sit and enjoy the waves for a bit. Then the hike up is all uphill but not too long, nice to get in some workout after being in the car anyway.

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