Big Sur International Marathon
Running on the Ragged Edge of the Western World
Iconic coastline, foot race from Big Sur to Carmel. Run along scenic Highway One, the nation’s first nationally designated Scenic Highway
Annual event; April
PCH is Pacific Coast Highway 101 @ Encinitas CA features a summertime treat, a Taste of Main Street International Food Fair, where local restaurants & vendors offer food samplings to the general public. Food, wine and beer. One day event, usually held on a week day. 25 years running!
Annual event; August
Los Padres Group Camping – Big Sur, Monterey & Ojai, California
Los Padres Forest is the SoCal camping mecca. Pinyon forests & peaks of nearly 9000′ make this the highest elevations of Kern County. This coastal forest on the San Andreas Fault burns bad due to winds & wildfires, but there is plenty back country to enjoy with minimal crowds – as long as camp fire safety is key.
Southern Los Padres National Forest operates Group Campgrounds for reservations. Several back country camp spots can accommodate a large group. Mount Able’s Camp-O-Alto and Mount Pinos’ Chula Vista walk-in camp can both handle a big crowd, but you may need to call the Lockwood Valley ranger station for more info and availability.
Northern Los Padres – Hwy 1 around the Big Sur/Monterey CA region has 2 Group Campgrounds w/ facilities, flush toilets & reservations online.
Los Padres Group Campgrounds:
|Arroyo Seco Group Camp
|Carmel Valley, Greenfield
|Holiday Group Camp
|N of Ojai
|Plaskett Creek Campsite
|South Big Sur coast
|Sage Hill Campground
If you are seeking regular campgrounds that take reservations and do not need a large group site, then follow this link below for all other Los Padres campsites.
Plaskett Campground is across the road from Sand Dollar Beach, a popular day use area. California Coast Campground – the infamous Central Coast Highway – Hwy 1 (so you may hear traffic @ this camp)
Hungry Valley SVRA – off-road park located near Interstate 5 @ Gorman, accommodates large and small groups with numerous campgrounds. Expect busy weekends and crowds; sometimes snow during winter months.
Ballinger Canyon OHV Park – off road park near Cuyama River Valley, on Hwy 33 near junction w/ Hwy 166. Campgrounds suited for off-road campers and RVs. Dirt bike trails, off road routes; North of Quatal Canyon (Rd #9N09) & Chumash Wilderness.
maps of Los Padres Central Coast-
Hiking the Southern Big Sur Coastline
Central California Coast
Backpacking and hiking trails on the Pacific Coast, steep terrain next to ocean. Coastal redwood canyons, oaks hills, great views. The neighboring Ventana Wilderness is located just north of Silver Peak hiking trails.
Silver Peak –3,590′ elevation
Alder Peak –3,744′
mile markers along Pacific Coast Highway 1
developed campgrounds nearby –
nearby towns –
US Hwy 101 @ PCH 1 exit
follow frontage road on south side of the 101
View Gaviota Hot Springs in a larger map
This soaking spot is a convenient stop for those traveling the 101 on the California Central Coast. The hot pools are located in an overgrown canyon, about half mile up the hill from the parking area. The natural earthen pools tend to be warm, mushy, and smelly (like sulfur) but never super hot.
These are old, historic, volunteer built pools that are not maintained regularly, so keep that in mind when comparing this location to other well-manicured springs. Many of the locals that care for these sacred spaces only get paid back by reckless visitors with litter, graffiti and vandalism. If you want places like this to stay open, we must do our part to ensure that we leave it better tan we found it.
Parking fee, lot managed by California State Park. Gate closes at dark.
1 mile hike round trip
Poison oak, snake and ticks can be a problem at this location, so do be on the lookout.
hiking trails from here –
Gaviota Peak (fire road) and Campbell Trail (unmaintained)