View Full Version : Anyone know of any good multi-day hiking trips near the central coast? (SLO)

10-19-2011, 10:34 PM
Hey all,

I've been reminiscing a lot lately about Ranger school and trudging through the woods and have been having a desire to do so again. I was wondering if anyone knew of areas in or around SLO county where you could get lost in the woods/hills for a few days. I mean like out in the boonies, no trails or roads. I would like to land nav out to some landmark and back, only be gone like 2-3 days total.

Well, I'm open to any ideas. Thanks for the help, Jon.

10-19-2011, 10:35 PM
big sur?

Manic Mechanic
10-19-2011, 10:48 PM
Big Sur is SUPER rugged. Either going up or down. Not much in between. Great area to backpack. I've been all over the south coast and a little north and eastern sides. Not great if you are trying to do land nav. You will be constricted to watershed drainages or following trails over ridges back down to drainages. The brush is thick and makes off trail travel dificult to near impossible.

You might try the "Indians" area on the interior north of Fort Hunter Liggett. Open enough but there will be dirt roads around.

Not as scenic but the area around Pozo might work for what you want. Again you'll find some dirt roads.

California Valley? Haven't been there. Hear it's a whole lot of nothing.

PM me if you have any questions. I've been kicking around the central coast for just under 30 years.

10-20-2011, 10:19 AM
You're in Hanford? Go east instead. PAX

10-21-2011, 1:38 PM
I used to do weekend back-packing trips in Los Padres National Forest which has a couple of access points that I know of, between Big Sur and Carmel. Probably more I don't know about.

10-21-2011, 2:23 PM
Thanks for the responses guys. I'm from hanford, but spend 95% of my time in SLO for school.

xrMike, I was looking into Los Padres NF, could you maybe PM the access points you know about? that would be greatly appreciated.

Manic Mechanic, a few dirt roads is no big deal. I just don't won't to be on one of those super common day trails or something where I'll be running in to people all the time. I would very much like to soak up any information you have offer. I'll be sending you a PM shortly.

Thanks again for the help guys!


10-24-2011, 9:58 AM
It's been a few years, but I do remember one of our most common entry points into the northern-most part of LPNF from Highway 1 was Palo Colorado Canyon Road. Turn right onto that road (if you're coming from the south) and follow it all the way to the end, and there's a LPNF campground there called Bottcher's Gap. You can camp there and use that as a staging area for numerous day hikes, or backpack from there to other campgrounds within the park.

This link:


plus a detailed map of the park should get you started.

There's like 20 different campgrounds at LPNF, so if you're driving up from the south, you can find others that are closer to you. THe park is huge! People ride dirtbikes and shoot there also. Hundreds of miles of trails.