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Little Sur Trail

Passable from Scout Camp to Saddle, then conditions deterior

Postby rt1 on Wed Jun 10, 2009 9:03 pm

Date Hiked: June 10, 2009
General Condition: Passable (some brush and/or deadfalls, tread evident)

After 2 days of trail work, the trail is clear to passable from the trailhead at the Scout Camp to the saddle on Launtz Ridge. I am marking it as passable, not clear, since the tread is uneven in many places, there are several large deadfalls that needed to be rerouted around, there is some poison oak on the final climb, and, near the top, the tread dissapears for a short while.

Soon after the junction with the Manuel Peak Trail (the signpost burned so I leaned the sign against a tree, the trail conditions deteriorate significantly as the trail descends into Dubeneck's Hole (official name of hollow refered to in one post as Hunting Hut Hollow) to the point that we decided to turn around and return later to continue work.

The day before, we encountered a hiker who had returned from several days in the wilderness. Here are some nuggets of information he gave us:

-One the trail emerges from Dubeneck's Hole into the large grassland below Mt. Pico, conditions drastically improve
-The worst part is the descent into Dubeneck's Hole
-Pico Public is fine
-The swimming hole at Pico Public is fine
-Soon west of Pico Public the trail dissapears. He was unable to find it and had to turn around.
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Cleared to Fish Camp!

Postby rt1 on Sun Jun 07, 2009 4:04 pm

Date Hiked: June 5, 2009
General Condition: Passable (some brush and/or deadfalls, tread evident)

We cleared from the Boy Scout camp to Fish Camp. The tread is in good condition and the trail is free of vegetation with few exceptions:

-The slide has gotten much worse to the point the tread has completely given out.
-There are several downed redwoods, some pre-fire, that either are bypassed or must by climbed over
-On the plateau before the final switchback down to Fish Camp, a lot of downed oaks make the trail hard to find. Head straight across the middle of the plateau towards a downed redwood and the trail will reappear on the other side and drop down to Fish Camp.
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Little Sur Trail

Postby mikesplain on Mon Jun 01, 2009 1:21 pm

Date Hiked: May 31, 2009
General Condition: Passable (some brush and/or deadfalls, tread evident)

Reported by mgaravuso:

Day hiked to the junction of Pico Blanco Public. Did not drop down, as morning fog burned off at that point, and my old dog was starting to look tired. Camp area did not burn from what I could see.

As with the previous report, the trail is still slumped, slightly overgrown, and the grassy areas are encroched by stinging nettles. I wore long pants, but still felt the stings.

Tred is eveident except for one of the last switchbacks is completely overgrown. Few have hiked this trail it appears. I wouldnt reccomend this trail for back packer unless they were very careful and prepared for some dicey sections with steep , slippery dropoffs.

As previous trail report stated, falls could be serious, someone slid down 200 feet and wasnt injured????

I rate the trail "passable" but with a back pack I would rate it "difficult", a hiking partner would help in sections where removing pack and handing it off would be a safe thing to do.

Other than that, the fire damage was not as bad as I thought it would be, most mature redwoods, burned quite a ways up thier trunks, were still green and full on top..
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Little Sur Trail

Postby dknapp1 on Wed May 27, 2009 11:47 am

Date Hiked: May 23, 2009
General Condition: Impassable (completely overgrown or tread obliterated)

Reported by Sarah Doty:

Specific = Bottchers Gap to Pico Blanco Camp = TOTALLY OBLITERATED

The Little Sur Trail from Pico Blanco Boy Scout Camp to Pico Blanco camp should be closed! Although the trail is still somewhat there, the number of large trees and brush piles blocking it (In excess of 45-50) make getting anywhere near Pico Blanco Camp impossible. I cannot believe that the Big Sur Station actually recommended this trail last Thursday! I certainly would not attempt it again without several gas powered chain saws and a mule team carrying a 10 day water supply. The fact that the forest service is not trying to find my body (or someone else's) right now somewhere on that hill is some kind of small miracle.

Here is a description of our travels:

My friend and I are calling this the "Extremely gnarly BBQ redwoods trip".

We started out by arriving at Bottchers Gap somewhat later in the evening. We were informed by the camp host that the last site had just been taken and that we had to continue down to Little Sur Camp. Knowing that we didn't want a fire, he was still unwilling to allow us to put our tiny little 2 person tent somewhere unobtrusive, so we headed down the road in the pitch black for a 1-2 hour hike to Little Sur Camp. LUCKILY, there was a car full of delayed Boy Scouts who felt sorry for the two people backpacking in the dark, and crammed us into their car with their children and all their gear. They dropped us at the trail head to Little Sur Camp. The trail to Little Sur camp was in good condition, but had quite a bit of poison oak which wasn't a problem because we couldn't see it anyway. We got to the camp and there was exactly one campsite left. The campsite is very nice and right along the river, but there is little to no privacy - which is great if you want to hang out with other campers, but really bad if you're a woman trying to use the loo. There's a steep hill on one side, and a creek on the other, and because I'm really seriously opposed to peeing in my drinking water, I had to hike all the way back up the trail until I found a nice little patch of poison oak to carefully pee on.

The next morning, we headed out early and walked down the hot, dry road to the Pico Blanco Boy Scout Camp where nice people greeted us and offered us water and bathrooms and led us to the trail head. The river crossing was deeper than it looked and we didn't bother to take off our hiking boots which was a mistake. I have very waterproof tall boots and got through it a little wet, but my friend got soaked. There are no signs to the trail head and if they boy scouts hadn't led us there, we would never have found it. You have to go to the main camp building and turn right behind it to go up the steep road to the water tanks. Past the sign that says "trail" (which leads somewhere else), there is another set of signs that tell you to go Left for Jackson Camp and Right to Pico Blanco. [Authors note: Why the heck am I telling you how to get to the trail head! Do not get to the trail head, DO NOT go here! DO NOT take this trail! Turn around NOW!]

This next section is for forest service personnel or trail clearing crews only. YOU have already taken my advice and turned around to head back to Bottchers Gap.

Behind the water tanks is a section of trail fondly and accurately referred to as "Cardiac Hill". There are probably 10-20 places where large trees and brush piles have completely blocked the trail, so what was once a strenuous climb is now taking your life into your own hands. Did I mention that the trail is really slippery with leaves and that we were attacked by swarms of hungry mosquitoes? In some places, you have to climb all the way up the steep slope through poison oak thickets to get around giant logs the width of a car.

If you make it up "Myocardial infarction hill" as I have renamed it, and you still have blood left in your body from the mosquito swarms, then you get to a place where the trail disappears. Somebody who thought you should actually keep going got really stoned and then decided to put up little pink and yellow flags all over so that you could get to the top of the hill and to the burned out sign post now laying on the ground. At least the mosquitoes somewhat tapered off by this point. Here the trail forks: If you're going to a list of other trails that are probably even worse than the Pico Blanco trail then go left, Pico Blanco is to the right. The top of the ridge is a little meadow full of wildflowers and poison oak and the directional flags are tied to grasses and plants that they will probably fall off of soon. Coming down off the ridge, there is a massive blockage of brush about 30-40 feet wide full of trees and bushes that all made a giant pile during some winter storm. Getting around it takes a good 20-30 minutes and steep climbs and crawling through poison oak are involved. On the other side of the blockage, over a little hill and another large downed tree, you will come to the place where the recently burned out hunting huts once stood. Piles of rusty metal objects and remnants of an old fireplace are now strewn about the redwood gully and the trees are all black. One enormous tree has fallen and blocked the trail, and you have to crawl under it to get to the site, covering yourself in ash in the process. If you get stuck and can't get back, this site is probably the only flat place to camp, and there's water if you follow the gully 20-30 minutes down, blazing your own trail. The trees are all precariously standing on their ashy bases and a strong wind is probably enough to send several of them crashing down on your tent.

From here, blazing your own trail the whole way, you can follow the little flags through a hot chaparral area with lots of flowers. The trail is narrow, covered in poison oak, and washed out in some places. Eventually, you get up to Pico Blanco where there are lots of blooming Yucca whipplei. Here there is a small narrow trail through the grass and pink tags lead you up onto the slopes of Pico Blanco where the trail and the tags end abruptly. If you keep going, you'll end up in a mess of spiky vegetation and limestone karst (very sharp rocks) that can take hours to get out of. You can see the Little Sur river from here, and the place where Pico Blanco camp is supposed to be, but there isn't any way to get down to it. The road above leads up to the top of Pico Blanco to the right, or curves around the mountain to the left -- neither are places you want to go. You can hear the Little Sur river which is a big bummer because there is no water accessible, and the hot dry slopes are not helping you conserve what's in your canteen. At this point, we attempted to blaze our own trail down to the river to at least get some water, but were thwarted in our attempts by a cliff, a huge poison oak thicket, and many downed trees. We found something that looked like it was once a trail that we followed down for awhile until we were completely stopped by a large amount of brush blocking the path. We decided to turn around -- something we should have done 24 hours prior.

The way back was even more challenging because our muscles were sore and climbing over the large trees and brush piles was difficult. Additionally, "Myocardial infarction hill" was extremely steep and slippery on the way down, and we hadn't reached Little Sur river which meant we had to ration our water.

In summary, if we hadn't decided to take a full 2-3 day supply of water with us, or if we hadn't been really experienced backpackers (I used to do contract work for the forest service), or if we hadn't been as physically fit, or experienced in navigation and survival skills, we would still be up there somewhere dehydrating to death.

The fact that the forest service at Big Sur Station actually recommended this trail knowing that no one had been down it since the fire is either proof that they enjoy dramatic and expensive rescue attempts at taxpayer expense, or that they want to scare people away from the Ventana Wilderness by increasing the number of deaths that occur annually.


P.S. We ran into another couple that didn't make it either, and had camped somewhere dangerous when they ran out of daylight. All in all, it took us 11 hours of hiking to get to the "end" (we didn't even make it down to the camp), and about 7 hours to get back from the former Hunting Hut gully.
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Post-Fire Report

Postby Site Administrator on Tue May 26, 2009 9:42 am

Conditions reported by: Jim Preston
Survey date: May 1, 2009
General: DIFFICULT
Specific: Trip report of the VWA Little Sur Trail crew scoping mission:

Our objective was to discover the damage to the trail from the Basin Complex Fire in the summer of 2008 and the resulting winter erosion. Our trip began at the unmarked trailhead on the Old Coast Road and our destination was Pico Blanco Public Camp 5 miles up the trail.

We left the trailhead a little after 9 AM and made it back at 7 PM. 10 hours with only short breaks and we covered 9 miles round trip. We managed to get to within half a mile of Pico Blanco Camp but we lost the trail again at 3 PM and decided to turn around. We had already lost one member of our seven person group on a wild slide down about 200 feet with no injury and we were all very tired. So we don’t know about the conditions at Pico Blanco Public Camp but based on our traverse of two large fields the campsite is probably full of weeds and wildflowers. Many of those weeds bite. The hole below the waterfall is probably silted since the sections of river we passed were silted. The picnic tables may have survived because the ground around them was bare dirt. The trees look fine from the air and what we could see during our hike. The trail along the river and up to the Graniterock road is unchanged and very beautiful with only a few new small downed trees and of course the big slide almost half a mile up the trail. Most of the group traversed the slide but Lee Staley and I went over the top to explore an alternative route.

It would be easy to create new trail for about half of this alternate route but the upsteam side is ugly. We would need roughly a thousand feet of new trail with much chainsaw work on a steep slope full of boulders. I’m no longer considering this route.

David Lautzenheiser believes he sees a way to rework the trail across the slide. That would be our preference.

The burn zone started just beyond the Graniterock road crossing. There are a lot of unburned areas and much greenery within the burn. There is a large deadfall zone with 9 trees down just before the old gate. It is a struggle to get through this area. Lots of work for a saw crew. A couple of redwoods are beyond the VWA’s ability to remove but we can go under. For the rest of the way in both the brush zone and the open fields the trail is covered with vegetation. Unfortunately a good amount of that are morning glory vines that catch your boots and make it a struggle to walk. There are also a lot of thistles and the yucca are back so we had many painful jabs. In the fields the trail was mostly gone and finding it on the other side was difficult. The fields are a sea of over knee high grass and weeds.

The trail tread is a mess. I gave up trying to GPS map the bad spots. The whole wilderness section of the trail needs work. We probably have 1.5 miles of McLeod work to restore it to the condition we left it after our May 2008 trail work trip. Removing the dirt that slid over the tread is easy; there is just so much of it is the problem. We have some additional brush work to do but nothing as big as we’ve done before there.

Several of the old wash crossings are MUCH more difficult now. Creating a safe path through them will be complicated. These washes are cliffs and a fall means falling off a cliff. Get it?

There was one boot-print sighting to indicate that someone may have gone in before us but no other evidence at all.

Now for the good news. The wildflower display was incredible!!!!

So what would it be like to backpack this trail now? It is definitely expert only due to the high probability of falling off the trail and of even finding the trail in places. We made some improvements in the bad spots but the edge of the trail gives way easily and several of the washes are risky and difficult with a pack. Stiff burned brush could rip a pack and is hard to maneuver through.

Think of it this way: The highly experienced VWA trail crew for this trail took 10 hours to go 9 miles round trip. We had two incidents of a member falling off the trail and one of those was a 200 foot slide to the gully below. We had several close calls, including myself, because the vegetation hides holes, the trail edge, and slippery limestone rocks in the trail. Some places require reasonable rock climbing experience and not every rock cooperates.

My guess is that many of the trails in the Ventana will be in this condition and that restoration will require both use and extensive trail work. As an example I estimate that a 10 person volunteer crew would take 14 work days to restore about 2.5 miles of the Little Sur Trail. I believe I could find enough volunteers to staff this effort over the next two years.

For photos and a fly-over video of the upper Little Sur Trail please visit our Facebook page.

Please join the group as a supporter!

Little Sur Facebook Group [url]http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=110063586912
[/url]
- Jim Preston, VWA trail lead for the Little Sur River Trail.
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Postby Site Administrator on Tue May 26, 2009 9:39 am

Date Hiked: May 2, 2009
General Condition: Impassable (completely overgrown or tread obliterated)

Conditions reported by: David C. Laredo
Survey date: 2-MAY-2009
General: IMPASSABLE
Specific:

The trail from the Old Coast Highway is now open (Old Coast was muddy due to rain, but passable). The entry is now open, but marked with warnings. The path is well cleared for about 1/2 mile, but at that point the trail is obliterated by a steep slide that was unpassable in the wet weather. My two labs bounded down the steep slide but could not return. They were forced (after much coaching and quite reluctantly) to swim through the river.

I believe this slide may not be as treacherous in dry conditions, but it will need work to restore or re-route the trail. Good luck!
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Trail Conditions History 1999-2007

Postby Site Administrator on Tue May 26, 2009 9:30 am

Date Hiked: June 2, 2007
General Condition: Passable (some brush and/or deadfalls, tread evident)

===========
Conditions reported by: Josh and Emily
Survey date: 2-JUNE-2007
General: PASSABLE
Specific:

Did a dayhike from Old Coast Road to Pico Blanco Public Camp. The recent trailwork has improved some of the worst sections of the trail, but it is still a pretty rough trail.

The trail repair of the washout about a mile from the trailhead is in the form of some rough "stairs" carved into the hillside. They are usable, though quite steep and some may still prefer to take a detour across the river and back. The climb from the Little Sur river up to Granite Rock road is in good shape with only minor encroaching brush.

The roughest sections start a mile or two from Granite Rock road where the brush becomes very thick and there are many places where the tread is slumping or loose. As I said, some of the worst spots have been nicely repaired, but there are still plenty of places to lose your footing, which is made worse by the fact that you can't always see where you are stepping because of the brush. Poison oak was abundant along most of the trail.

I previously remember seeing a sign at the trail junction leading to camp but didn't see one this time (though I could be mistaken), but since there is really only one junction along the trail, there shouldn't be much confusion. Having taken this route to camp, as well as from Bottcher's Gap, I would have to say that you may be better off taking the longer route from Bottcher's due to the condition of the trail.
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Conditions reported by: Jim Preston
Survey date: 28-MAY-2007
General: DIFFICULT
Specific:

A VWA trail crew spent Memorial Day Weekend 2007 clearing the tree obstacles from the Coast Road to the river crossing about 2 miles up the trail toward Pico Blanco Camp. We also made the bad slide not far from the trailhead into a passable but tricky trail. That fix is a short term solution.

The brushy section on the side of Pico Blanco is still a mess. It is heavily overgrown and the tread is in bad shape in places. Poison oak is unavoidable. Intermediate and advanced hikers and backpackers can get through but novices should avoid this trail for now.

Once you clear that brushy section and break out onto the exposed ridge below the telephone pole then you will encounter sections where we did extensive tread work and brush clearing. It is now fairly easy hiking the rest of the way into Pico Blanco Public Camp.

Further information on the Little Sur River Trail project
===========
Conditions reported by: David Baselt
Survey date: 29-APRIL-2007
General: PASSABLE
Specific:

Section: Pico Blanco Boy Scout Camp to Jackson Camp - Passable

The trail seems to be little-used and is completely covered with leaves. Up to Fish Camp the trail is cut into a hillside and is easy to follow. The trail is slightly eroded such that the right (uphill) side is a bit higher than the left. It's not dangerous but it does make it harder to walk. After Fish Camp the trail becomes fainter. Because of the dry weather this year the river was only about 6 inches deep and easily crossed, at least if you're willing to get your feet wet. After Jackson Camp the trail becomes fainter still and gets a bit difficult to follow.

Several large trees have fallen across the trail, and although most have steps cut into them, one or two are a little difficult to get over. At one point where the trail is cut into a hillside, a tanoak has fallen across the trail, requiring hikers to step down off the trail and push past its mass of leaves.

On the other hand, there is very little poison oak along the trail, just a few shoots here and there that can be avoided. I picked up one tick along the way.
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Conditions reported by: David C. Laredo
Survey date: 15-APRIL-2007
General: CLEAR
Specific:

Section: Old Coast Road to Pico Blanco Camp - Difficult

A group of nine Scouts hiked from the Old Coast Road trailhead to Pico Public as a dayhike. We left the Old Coast Road at 7:30am and arrived at Pico Public by 10:45am. We began the return at 11:30am and arrived at Old Coast Road at 2:15pm.

As reported, the slide at 0.8 miles is quite steep and continues to erode. We took the low path each way.

Although we encountered about 20 deadfalls, most of occured before we crossed the river. The river flow was low and it was quite easy to rock hop across without getting shoes wet.

The brush continues to encroach on the trail, and poison oak was quite evident (but passable). Portions of the tread are eroded and make for difficult footing, but these areas can still be navigated easily. Long pants and long sleeve shirts helped keep both ticks and poison oak at bay.

The two benches at Pico Public continue in great shape, and the three fire rings are also in fair repair. No other party was at the site.
===========
Conditions reported by: Jerry Lee
Survey date: 8-APRIL-2007
General: DIFFICULT
Specific:

Overall: This trail was much more tiring than it should have been for such a short distance in cool weather.

text

Section: Old Coast Road to Little Sur River - Difficult

Many, many deadfalls. The trail has become more of an obstacle course than a trail, with lots of crawling under or over downed tree. Many others can be stepped over, but the cumulative effect is very tiring. The trail washout reported earlier is still there and adds to the difficulty. It will take a huge effort to restore this trail to the wilderness freeway it was before Sudden Oak Death killed all the tan oaks in this watershed.

Section: Little Sur River to Pico Blanco Camp - Difficult

Even more encroaching brush, eroded trails, tricky rock strewn sections make the brushy part of the trail difficult. VWA trail crew work on this trail several years ago has helped but much more work is needed. Poison oak abundant as usual. No flying bug nuisances this day and few ticks. Waterfall at Pico Blanco Camp is much lower than normal for this time of year, but it's still a beautiful place and worth the effort to get to there. Magnificent views on the open stretches of the trail.

===========
Conditions reported by: Ed Rosensteel
Survey date: 13-MARCH-2007
General: PASSABLE
Specific:

General:

I had a beautiful hike with my fiance Sue out to Pico Blanco Public Camp from Bottchers Gap. We lucked out on the weather - dry and sunny in the high 60's. At this time there were practically no ticks or flying insects on this route. The poison oak wasn't too terrible.... that didn't stop me from getting a few good rashes though.

Section: Bottcher's Gap to BSA Camp - Groomed Road

Easy groomed fire road. Rangers warned us not to drink the tap water at the unoccupied BSA camp. Left Bottchers at 1:30pm and arrived at the BSA camp at 2:30pm.

Section: BSA Camp to Launtz Ridge - Passable

From the BSA Camp the trail is easy to follow up to the junction with the trail to Jackson Camp. There is a fire road that accompanies it this far.

From there the trail was not in great shape and could use some maintenance. In most places the tread was obscured by slippery duff and encroached on by brush. Launtz Ridge is heavily forested making it difficult to see other peaks or baselines. The north side of Launtz Ridge fell into shadow early in the afternoon. The lack of light made finding the trail more difficult, further slowing our ascent. Do yourself a favor and put this trail behind you in the morning.

There were several large messy tree falls, difficult to negotiate due to the steep grade and underbrush. The trail has no blazes, so even after I made it around or through the tree falls, it took some time to find the trail again. This is not for beginners.

The trail becomes clearer once it tops the ridge and junctions with the Little Sur Trail to Pico Blanco Public Camp.

I left the BSA Camp at 2:30 and arrived at the Little Sur Trail junction on top of Launtz Ridge at about 4:30. I had an easier time returning the following day, leaving the junction on top of Launtz Ridge at 10:45AM and arriving at the BSA camp at 12:20PM.

Section: Launtz Ridge to Pico Blanco Public Camp - Passable

From the top of Launtz Ridge the trail drops through some passable treefalls into a dark redwood hollow decorated with some old ruined shanties. Trail gets lost in the middle of the old camp but is easily found by leaving the stream to your left and climbing a little. There was an unseen hog happily grunting somewhere in the cool hollow.

In a few hundred yards from the ruined shanties the trail exits the forest and I found myself on the steep slopes of Pico Blanco. There are a few scraggly patches of brush to burst through, but eventually the trail opens up to traverse a rocky meadow. Easy to follow, but watch your step and avoid the sharp yuccas. The wild flowers were just beginning to come out, the grasses and tree were much greener compared to summer and fall. There are many small lizards here. Very pretty. There are several cairns with metal stakes in them just off trail (Forest survey markers?). They do not indicate the spur down to the camp sites, keep going!

I was pleasantly surprised to find another couple at this remote camp. Camp sites were very comfortable with beautiful views of Pico Blanco. The Little Sur River was roaring and I filtered out some very tasty water! Future campers take note: Animals had dug up some old cat holes so please bury yours with rocks or pack out!

I left the junction on Launtz Ridge at 4:30 and arrived at Pico Blanco Public Camp at 6:00. Hiking out I left camp at 9:30 and topped Launtz Ridge at 10:45.
===========
Conditions reported by: Chris
Survey date: 3-FEBRUARY-2007
General: PASSABLE
Specific:

Section: Boy Scout Camp to Mt Manuel Trail junction - Passable

Mostly clear but with a few sections of significant blowdowns. A recent one in particular less than half a mile south of the Jackson Trail junction requires 150 feet of bushwhacking to get around (no real use trail yet). Also, there is plentiful poison oak as you get toward Launtz Ridge, so be careful (I unfortunately, was not).
===========
Conditions reported by: Michael
Survey date: NOVEMBER-2006
General: CLEAR
Specific:

Section: Old Coast Road to Pico Blanco Camp - Passable

Day hiked to Pico Blanco Public camp. The slide at around 0.8 miles is still dicey for someone with heavy pack, but I took the high use path in bound and the low use path out, its easier to climb the 8-10 vertical washout then to try and slide down it. My 60 pound 10 year old dog, climbed the 10 foot section without any assistance. When it starts raining hard, this section will only get worse..

The rest of the trail is as previously mentioned, the areas of downed oaks have been pruned to allow step overs and unders, I did HEAR a loud crack and crash as I climbed up towards the Granite road, another dead oak bites the dust.

Above the granite road, the switchback section is getting wors, bruch encroachment and slumping tread. I wore long pants but short shirt, a long shirt is definitely recommended. I did have the dirt slide out from underfoot a few times, which could have led to a fall if I was packing a full load.

Noone was camped at Pico Blanco and it was a pretty as ever.

Had a wild pig come straight up the trail towards us right before the junction, he ran off as soon as he spotted us. And the ticks are out already, I brushed off dozens, and im still pulling some off my dog, 5 days later.
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Conditions reported by: Scoobis
Survey date: 24-JULY-2006
General: DIFFICULT
Specific:

Very disappointed to find that the trail is impassable for those with dogs. About a half mile in, the trail after wandering most of the way along the river takes a gentle rise that for the first stretch is bordered by a large downed redwood. Shortly after the climb begins there is a section that has completely washed out. It is very steep with a decent little drop. There are some footholds cut into the drop, and it would be possible for someone to carefully lower themselves down, but for a dog it would be risking a broken leg in a very difficult place to get out of. An alternative does exist, just before the point where you start to climb out of the riverbed you can cross over the river and follow a trail around this section of trail and cross the river again and meet up with the trail when it comes back down to the river bed only 500 or so feet ahead.
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Conditions reported by: Lauren
Survey date: 8-JULY-2006
General: CLEAR
Specific:

Section: Pico Blanco boy Scout Camp to Jackson Camp - Clear

No specific issues. I got on the trail a little late, and solo, so I didn't go up to Pico Blanco as planned; I camped at Jackson Camp. It was nice, but I was sad to find beer cans and garbage at my site. (I packed it out, but as I left, I remembered there were a couple of pieces of foil and an orange peel left in the fire pit.) Besides mad mosquitos and biting flies, no complaints! Plenty of water in the river.

Also, I was thinking that I'd missed the showy flower season, and while I saw some penstemons and mimulus walking down the road to Boy Scout Camp, I was lucky to see leopard lilies down at Jackson Camp. Wow!
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Conditions reported by: Adam
Survey date: 22-APRIL-2006
General: PASSABLE
Specific:

Section: Old Coast Road trailhead to where the trail passes Graniterock's private dirt road. - Passable

The trail between these points has gotten much better since last year, except for a large recent landslide/ washout about .8 miles from old coast road. You can see my post explaining it on 4/24/06. The washout is about 15-20 ft wide, and is impassable/not recommended for crossing with large packs. Instead, we had to line up, on what small tread we were able to make through the washout, and pass along the packs. Also, there is a 5 foot ledge on each side of the washout.

Also, if anyone here does GPS, the coords. of the washout are 36* 19.056N 121* 51.335W (the coords. are slightly off due to the tree cover in the area).

Between the river crossing and Graniterock's dirt road, the trail is a bit brushy, but not too bad. But, I would imagine that the conditions are still the same beyond that area from previous reports.
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Conditions reported by: TK
Survey date: 18-MARCH-2006
General: DIFFICULT
Specific:

This great trail is in need of some major help. The first part is fine. There are about 5 down trees on the river section. When you climb it starts getting overgrown and you will incounter many more down trees. The tread is slipping away in a lot of areas as it slides off the mountain. Also the ticks on this trail are out of control everytime I've done it. I pulled hundreds off my legs (mainly because its overgrown cyote brush which ticks love). Overall it is still passable but the sudden oak death has taken a huge toll on this area killing hundreds of them. There are going to be a lot more down trees soon.

===========
Conditions reported by: Matt Fiori
Survey date: 24-SEPTEMBER-2005
General: PASSABLE
Specific:

Section: Old Coast Road to Manuel Peak Trail junction - Passable

The trail was blocked right near the trailhead at the Old Coast Road by a rather large deadfall, which was surmounted fairly easily. There were several more minor deadfalls in the leading down the river, which was easily crossed. The trail was more or less in good shape, with just a few patches of loose tread and a little bit of brush crowding the trail. As we approached Pico Blanco Camp, the loose rock and dirt made for difficult footing. I actually slipped and scraped up my hand pretty good. The waterfall at the camp was beautiful, but the flies were out in full force. Nice easy hike to junction of Mt. Manuel Trail, which we took. Boy were we surprised.

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Conditions reported by: Carl A. Mounteer
Survey date: 28-JULY-2005
General: PASSABLE
Specific:

Section: Pico Blanco Boy Scout Camp and Jackson Camp - Passable

The trail was generally clear except for four large and very old deadfalls of gigantic trees. Two of these were much easier to negotiate than the others.

There were a lot of leaves covering the ground. [Ed: and presumably covering the tread]

Both the Schaeffer and Elliot guides name the camp where this trail first crosses the Little Sur River after the Boy Scout Camp as Jackson Camp. Actually, this camp is Fish Camp. Jackson Camp is about 1/3 of a mile past Fish Camp. Two river crossings are necessary to get to Jackson Camp. Both were crossable with some caution. For the first crossing go upstream from Fish Camp on the same bank where the camp is until you reach an enormous pile of deadwood. At this point there is a very conveniently located downed tree that takes you obliquely across the river. I tried to cross without using this and submerged my waterproof boots to the great adversity of my feet the next day on the hike back to Bottcher's Gap.

The mosquitos were ferocious and aggressive. They are black and much smaller than what I was used to, about the size of my little fingernail. Their bites were much more itchy than any other mosquito bite I can remember. My L. L. Bean Buzz Off shirt may have helped a little because they avoided my neck but attacked my hands, forehead, and behind my ears. But how can you really tell unless you take it off and put another shirt on? I remember a trip to Ojito Camp without a Buzz Off shirt that left my shoulders covered with mosquito bites despite two layers of clothing. I would recommend a DEET-based insect repellent anywhere in the Los Padres National Forest at this time of year.

About 20 minutes after I arrived at Fish Camp to camp, about 20 Boy Scouts showed up to camp there that night. I think lots of Boy Scouts are part of the bargain if you are going to camp in this area during the summer. At least the Boy Scouts were very polite and considerate, offering to go up to Jackson Camp and leave me alone. I declined this very kind offer and went there myself. They also left Fish Camp spotless.

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Conditions reported by: Carl A. Mounteer
Survey date: 20-APRIL-2005
General: DIFFICULT
Specific:

This trail is a shambles. I counted 134 downed trees, including one yucca plant, that completely crossed the trail. Of these, 101 were in the 1.8 mile interval between the trailhead and the crossing at the South Fork of the Little Sur River. Most of these downed trees were easily negotiable but at least nine required crawling under or climbing over. The latter included three within 10 yards of the trailhead and at least three others to the Little Sur River Crossing.

The Little Sur River is crossable although I got both feet drenched inbound. But use the downed, burnt redwood where the trail ends and the oak next to it to get 3/4 of the way across. Then, if you are really careful, where the tree bridges end, there are some rocks that will get you across the last 1/4 of the fork with dry feet. But you need waterproof boots to do it because you have to get your boots wet to cross.

Jim P's excellent July 10, 2004 report is an accurate description of the trail conditions with the following qualifications. From reading his report, and several others, I expected the encroaching brush to be much more intrusive and dense than I encountered. I have certainly seen it a lot worse. (See my Jan. 18, 2004 report on the Gamboa Trail) This would be a fairly long but moderate hike if it wasn't for the brush and trees down. The yucca plants with their nasty spines encroach the trail constantly on the latter half of the trail. Poison oak is lavishly distributed on both sides of the trail but luckily it is rarely above calf level. Pico Blanco Public Camp has only 3 sites, one unofficial, not 4 as Jim P. described.

Also the tread is very badly deteriorated for about a mile after about 1/2 mile coming out of Pico Blanco Public Camp westbound. This is because of new grass growth on the grassy slopes. It was easy to follow inbound. But for some reason, outbound, it was much more difficult and took a lot more concentration. I actually lost the trail at one point (panic time!) but found it within a couple of minutes. So generous markings with trail tape over the grassy slopes are highly recommended.

Pico Blanco Public Camp is a beautiful site and might even be worth all this effort to get there but I am still deciding on that. At one point, emerging from the stand of oaks over the last grassy knoll before the camp the beauty of the blue lupins against the green grass was a total surprise and just took your breath away. The wildflowers were in their full glory, with purple Irises in the shady areas and poppies as well as a cream colored flower with a dark red center that just dominated the grassy slopes. The views of the ridge across the canyon where the East Molera Trail ends were really stunning.

After rising about 6:30 I went to the side stream crossing Little Sur Trail and bordering the west side of the camp to get water. Despite the 40 degree air temperature, and the near freezing temperatures of the South Fork, this stream was tepid. This suggested to me that there might be hot springs further up the stream although I did not bother to check.

I am a 57 year-old male in moderately good physical condition. I was approximately 4 hours inbound with two 10 minute rests and approximately 4 hours outbound with a 5, 10 and 20 minute rests. This was over a 6 mile one-way trail, according to Shaeffer.

This is a gorgeous hike. I just wonder how much longer it is going to be available without a lot more major work being done to maintain the trail. So take advantage of it now. I am not sure if it will always be able to be used. The Sierra Club Guide states that Granite Rock did some work on the trail for the mile after the river crossing. But that must have been some time ago because this portion is just as much of a mess as the rest of it.
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Conditions reported by: Lori
Survey date: 6-APRIL-2005
General: DIFFICULT
Specific:

Section: Old Coast Road trailhead to ???

This was a great hike, we started at 12:40pm, bushwacked our way in, slowing down for a few tick attacks. We made it in just over 2hrs. We saw nobody on the trail except when we got to the 1st camp above the waterfall/pool, there was a guy camping said he'd been there two days. Aside from the overgrown brush including poison oak, and healthy tick population the trail is looking good, only a few trail washes and some down trees. The river was thigh high on my 5'4'' frame.
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Conditions reported by: Carl A. Mounteer
Survey date: 7-MARCH-2005
General: PASSABLE
Specific:

Section: Pico Blanco Boy Scout Camp trailhead to Jackson Camp

The trailhead is confusing because the sign points towards both a fairly narrow dirt road on the right that can be confused for a trail and a trail on the left that looks like a typical Ventana Wilderness Trail (although this trail is not in the Ventana Wilderness). The trail is covered with leaves the entire distance.

There are two spots where it is easy to lose the tread. One, at about a quarter of a mile in from the trailhead in a grove of redwoods where the ambient color of the ground is pine-needle red, you are tempted to go straight ahead but you find the trail disappears. Instead you have to make a hard right up a hill to cross two very small streams that have been bridged by small logs.

The other is very near the end of the trail. You find yourself facing an oak with a bright yellow plastic "Caution" tape wrapped around the trunk. Thank you to whoever did this because at that point you should go left through a field of small boulders to pick up the trail again which ends about 50 yards later at Jackson Camp. This is a really lovely place on the Little Sur River.

I counted 41 downed trees on this 1.2 mile trail. All but three, and those were recent ones, were easily negotiable. These three were just difficult to get past because the foliage was blocking the trail. Even these were not formidable obstacles.

From Bottcher's Gap I was 2.5 hours inbound and outbound even with taking lots of pictures outbound. I only had an 11 lb. daypack and average 2 m.p.h.

I am still debating if this is really worth the effort for a backpacking trip. Little Sur Camp is half the distance and a beautiful spot. But it is not as spacious and a little darker than Jackson Camp.
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Conditions reported by: James Hamilton
Survey date: 16-OCT-2004
General: PASSABLE
Specific:

Section: Old Coast Rd. trailhead to Pico Blanco Public Camp

We are the couple mentioned in Mike's posting below.

We hiked in on Saturday the 16th morning. Only minimal amounts of deadfall while walking along the riverbed, easily passible. Hiking up the brushy switchback up to Pico Blanco we encountered abundant poison oak as well as overgrown brush. On sunny days such as this the south westerly hike up gets quite warm so pack a good deal of water. It took us about 4 hours to reach Pico Blanco from the gate. Fresh water is abundant and clear blue at the site.

The night of the 16th we had about 14 hrs of straight rainfall and awoke to continuing rain and fog. The return hike was mystical with the rain and fog and there were several washout areas on the switchback and footing was slippery and caution was exercised the whole walk home. Little Sur was only slightly flooded and still easily passable.

Trail was great, however to this Rocky Mountain backpacker Poison Oak won out and I had a severe case. Be sure to clean clothes fully for the oils when you return.

I would highly recommend the trail.
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Conditions reported by: Mike H.
Survey date: 15-OCT-2004
General: PASSABLE
Specific:

Section: Old Coast Rd. trailhead to Pico Blanco Public Camp

Trailhead is not marked on Old Coast Road. Trailhead is 3.9 miles from the south entrance to Old Coast Road (just inside Andrew Molera State Park). If you hit the two one-lane bridges (heading north), you've gone too far. Turn around and drive back 0.6 miles. The road widens just past a switchback. Park here. No Trespassing signs are all around, but I had no problems parking here.

The first part of the trail is clear and well-defined. The first time the trail dips to the river, do not cross. Continue to follow the trail along the river until it dips again to a very distinct crossing site. There are some deadfalls along the way. The river is wide here, but was shallow and easily crossed.

On the other side of the river the trail ascends in a series of switchbacks. The trail comes out onto a dirt road. Directly across is a rock with the word 'TRAIL' painted on it. You will see the trail right next to it. For a short period the trail is almost overgrown with ground cover. Pretty soon it opens up and is more defined. Leaves covered the trail at times, but it was always visible.

The guidebook I have says that you will come to an old homestead with an orchard, but I did not see it. I did see a white PVC water pipe snaking along a spring for a while, but I didn't investigate.

After a while, the trail leaves the forest and rises through brush in another series of switchbacks. When the sun is out, this can be a little hot. Recommend doing this hike before morning fog has lifted (though views won't be as good). I came across a tarantula on the path during this leg...no problems, though.

After following the contour of the ridge for awhile, you will come to a path heading down and to the right. There is a sign here pointing back the way you came that reads 'LITTLE SUR RIVER 4, OLD COAST ROAD 5.' This is the turnoff to Pico Blanca Camp.

The camp itself is spacious, with a sunny meadow and three well-defined camp sites. There are stoves at all three and tables at two of them. The trail to the swimming hole is easy to follow, and the pool itself is spectacular. The water is very cold, but refreshing after the hike.

I ran into one man early in the hike walking his dogs, but did not see anyone else on the way in. I left my car around noon on Friday and arrived at camp somewhere around 2-3pm (no watch). One other hiker arrived at the camp a couple hours after I got there. On the way out the next morning (around 11am), I ran into one couple heading toward the camp. Other than that, I didn't see anyone.
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Conditions reported by: Jim P.
Survey date: 10-JULY-2004
General: PASSABLE TO DIFFICULT
Specific:

Section: Old Coast Road trailhead to Pico Blanco Public Camp

The trail from Coast Road up to the Little Sur River crossing is a nice hike along the stream in the redwoods and clover. Deadfall is minimal and only a couple require some acrobatics to get through. (The trail is on private property for almost half the roughly five-plus miles to Pico Blanco Camp.) Then it starts climbing a bit and the trail gets a little brushy for a short distance, crosses a well-graded private road, and meanders back into the forest well above the river. Much of the trail to this point is on abandoned logging roads with good tread.

Not long after entering the national forest, roughly mile 2.5, the trail climbs with a long series of switchbacks on a brushy side hill for roughly a mile and a half. Here the trail is often overgrown with brush and poison oak is mostly unavoidable. The tread is frequently poor and in a few places has slumped down the hill into the heavy brush. The gradient is not bad and would be a simple climb without the brush and tread issues. The trail is carved into a few nice rock outcrops/cliffs and the tread is narrow but passable. There are a some nice breaks from the sun and heat in narrow draws with laurels and sometimes water, and from breezes from the offshore fog. Views are very good and the limestone rocks and flowering yuccas are interesting features. Since the hike in this section is a thrash through brush you should secure all loose things external on the pack and body, including boot lace loops. Good hiking footwear is important and long sleeves and pants recommended. Anything wide on the pack, such as tents and sleeping pads, should be turned vertical or protected. Hiking poles are helpful in some places and a hindrance in others. I would still recommend them for the hike.

The remaining mile or so above the brush is a decent trail over broken rocks and through oaks and grass fields with little elevation change. The trail has two unmarked divides in this area and stay right each time for Pico Blanco Public Camp. The campground is in a field on the edge of a redwood forest and above the south fork of the Little Sur River. There are four sites under trees and two have bench tables. Campfires are not allowed but the fire rings are frequently used. A narrow trail traverses the steep slope down to an idyllic swimming hole in the dark forest but the water is shockingly cold, even to those who love a cold swim.

We are of moderate strength but highly experienced backpackers with packs of 40 and 32 pounds inbound. We were never out of breath and took only two breaks of ten minutes each both in and out at delightful "water features", along with a few short stops to enjoy panoramic views. Time inbound was four hours and out was three and a half, including a little cleaning up at the Little Sur river crossing. As a guide for your time, we usually backpack at an average 1.6 miles per hour (five miles = three hours), so the brush slowed us considerably.

I would say that this trail experience would be enjoyable for upper intermediate to advanced hikers who can tolerate moderate hardships. It should be avoided by novices to the mountains. Maintenance and repair of the trail in the brush section is probably beyond the scope of volunteers. Major sections require root removal, not just pruning, major tread restoration, and some realignment. Leaving the trail as-is keeps the crowds out, at least from the Coast Road approach.
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Conditions reported by: EW
Survey date: 24-APRIL-2004
General: CLEAR
Specific:

Section: Pico Blanco BSA Camp to Jackson/Fox Camps

Pico Blanco Scout Camp to Jackson Camp- wide open and easily followed, several deadfalls, but they've been improved with sawed ledges to provide easy passage.

Jackson Camp to Fox Camp- Passable- bring river shoes or be prepared to stop and remove boots for nearly a dozen crossings of the Little Sur. Several more dead-falls not so easily surpassed,but nothing major; decent tread, beautiful trail.
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Conditions reported by: Betsy MacGowan
Survey date: 20-SEPT-2003
General: PASSABLE
Specific:

Section: Old Coast Rd. trailhead to Pico Blanco Public Camp

The VWA Trail Crew worked on sections of the Little Sur Trail between the Granite Rock road and Pico Blanco Public Camp, as part of our contribution to National Trails day. As other reports indicate, the first mile and a half of the Trail from the Old Coast Road follow the South Fork of the Little Sur River, where the second-growth redwood forest provides shade, and where the gentle gradient helps keep the trail in good condition. However Sudden Oak Death has killed most of the tanbark oaks throughout this valley and these trees, which have now been dead for several years, are starting to fall. Progress in the river section is slowed by the many dead trees now lying across the trail. Volunteers have already been working at cutting these downed trees, and our group made a contribution, but these trees will continue to fall.

Many sections of trail between the river and Pico Blanco Public Camp have become eroded due to chaparral growth. We were able to work on some of these areas but many remain. Especially in the brushy sections the trail can be a little tricky to follow. In a couple of places hikers should be careful not to continue straight ahead when the trail switches back. Some hikers might prefer to enjoy this trail in the cooler part of the year, although the heat certainly makes the pool at Pico Blanco Public Camp very enjoyable.
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Conditions reported by: Kerry ?
Survey date: 16-AUG-2003
General: DIFFICULT
Specific:

Section: Old Coast Rd. trailhead to ?

There are 2 distinct parts of the trail. The 1st from Coast Road is along the Little Sur creek and is shady redwood forest. Besides a tree or 2 mentioned below, this trail is in excellent shape. Once you cross the creek and hike up to the first section of chaparral, the end of the easy trail is where you cross the private road. While it's not difficult to see the tread of the trail, from here there are plenty of washed out sections and the brush is awful. Well, at least don't do what I did, wear pants. I wore shorts, and still barely managed on my water supply. It's very hot in summer and you really have to watch your balance on some of washed out sections. So, leave really early, wear light pants, bring lots of water and possibly a machete; you should be just fine.
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Conditions reported by: Jerry Mouton
Survey date: 13-JUNE-2003
General: DIFFICULT
Specific:

Section: Old Coast Trailhead towards Pico Blanco Public Camp

The riverside part of the trail was clear, but once you got up into the chaparral, the trace was very overgrown. Hiking was like running a gauntlet of fists in places. And there were places where the trail had slipped off down the mountainside, and these were sometimes hidden in the chaparral to boot. One of us fell, and we barely managed to catch him before he went vertical. Be careful!

Some downed trees, but not much of an issue. Poison oak interspersed with the chaparral, but not more than usual on a coast Range trail. Ticks in places. Nobody got poison oak or tick bites, as far as I know.
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Conditions reported by: Paul Foster
Survey date: 8-FEB-2003
General: PASSABLE
Specific:

The trail is passable, but there are several trees down and across the trail. These are located along the first part of the trail, between the roadhead at the west end, and before the trail crosses the South Fork of the Little Sur River at N 36 18 48, W 121 50 23. They are small trees and easily passable for walkers and backpackers but not for stock. A small saw should be enough to clear them off.
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Conditions reported by: Matthew Fiori
Survey date: 14-NOV-2002
General: PASSABLE
Specific:

The hike in from Coast Rd. is perfectly smooth and pleasant, plenty of water. Once you cross the South Fork the climb begins, but the trail is still in good shape. After crossing the Granite Rock Rd. get ready for some typical south facing Santa Lucia terrain: rocky, brushy and at some points narrow, slippery tread. It's hard work but overall in pretty good shape. I'd think someone should take some cutters out come summertime to help with making it more passable.
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Conditions reported by: Meade Fischer
Survey date: 10-NOV-2002
General: PASSABLE TO DIFFICULT
Specific:

As Galen noted below, "The first 3 miles of the trail are in pretty good shape, with only one or two fallen saplings obstructing the trail. The 1.5 miles between Granite Rock road and Pico Blanco Public Camp are in pretty bad shape, extremely brushy."

Just after the first rain of the season, the trail beyond Granite Rock road was in terrible shape. It was washed out in one place, requiring careful passing, and it was necessary to push through the brush for much of the way. After the rainy season, trail work will be necessary for continued use of the trail.
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Conditions reported by: Galen Pewtherer
Survey date: 11-MAy-2002
General: DIFFICULT
Specific:

The first 3 miles of the trail are in pretty good shape, with only one or two fallen saplings obstructing the trail. The 1.5 miles between Granite Rock road and pico blanco public camp are in pretty bad shape, extremely brushy with fairly abundant poison oak. the tread is easily visible, but very worn, eroded and/or narrow. ticks were also fairly plentiful, although we saw only dog ticks. once out of the chaparral the trail gets much better, and the final 1/2 mile to the camp is quite pleasant. there were no other people there the night of 05.11, but we did see quite a few folks camped by the river on the lower part of the trail when we returned the morning of 05.12.

NOTE: there were fairly fresh looking survey markers on the trail past the river crossing, perhaps this means that some maintenance is scheduled? (Ed. note: As Granite Rock possibly owns the land where the flagging was seen, it could well be signaling development activity .)
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Conditions reported by: Lindsay Jeffers
Survey date: 1-JULY-01
General: CLEAR TO PASSABLE
Specific:

The trail is passable, and much of the first half is very good. Coming off the Old Coast road, after opening and closing the tricky fence gate, one encounters a serious slide after about 15 minutes of walking. It is possible to carefully clamber over this without leaving the trail; apparently it has been improved since last year. It would be much easier if the tree across the trail at the site of the slide could be removed. The trail continues to the crossing of the South Fork with a clear tread and only a few fallen trees to step or climb over.

Crossing the river, the trail up to the Granite Rock road is clear and the trail continues clear through the lower, forested section. However, brush is frequent and the footing is rocky for much of the rest of the way up the hill side, and the tread frequently is soft. Nevertheless, there is little chance of losing the trail. Just note that about a half mile before the trail junction to the camp, there is an unsigned spur leading upwards towards one of the roads along the side of Pico Blanco. One needs to take the right-hand branch downhill to reach the camp, which was well used but clean when I visited it. At the end of June, there were two running water sources crossing the trail between the river and the camp site.

Flies were tolerable, mosquitoes few, and ticks only around the seeps along the trail.

Lindsay Jeffers
Stevenson School

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Conditions reported by: Dave Dunn
Survey date: 8-APRIL-00
General: PASSABLE to DIFFICULT
Specific:

This trail is primarily passable with a few exceptions giving this trail it's "difficult" rating. A large slip-out exists near the start of the trail and as was the case in last years report, this slip-out requires one to spend a few minutes scrambling down one side and climbing up the other. There are a few downed trees on the way to the river but these are easily negotiated by climbing over (or under). During the first week in April, the river was about one foot deep at the crossing. Boulder hopping was not an option so a wet (and extremely cold, by the way) crossing was required.

The trail on the hillside was passable with only a few areas on encroaching brush. Poison oak does exist on this trail and is unavoidable in a few places. Ticks were another problem with our group finding about 35 on the way out. On the hillside, one of the switchbacks is completely eroded by a rockslide and care should definitely be taken while climbing up to the continuing trail above. A few other minor washouts also exist along the way.

Pico Blanco camp turned out to be quite popular this weekend with all 3 campsites occupied.
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Conditions reported by: Boon Hughey
Survey date: 4-JUN-99
General: DIFFICULT
Specific:

Hikers starting at the Old Coast Road trailhead will run into several fallen trees across the trail as well as a pretty serious slip-out within the first half-mile. The trees are no real problem to get past, but the slip requires a few minutes of scrambling down the steep hillside and climbing back up again to the trail on the far side. Onward to the river crossing (which is about 2 miles from the trailhead) one will encounter 6 or 8 more downed trees and the occasional patch of encroaching thimbleberry, but nothing very serious.

Past the crossing where the trail takes to the sunny sidehills expect plenty of heavily encroaching brush to totally obscure the trail-tread in places. Luckily most of it is of the softer varieties like chamise, sage and yerba santa and isn't interlaced across the trail so it can be pushed through without too much effort. But push through it you will, most of the way. Poison oak also rears its ugly head on numerous occasions, in some places being unavoidable. There are also a few smaller slip-outs and wash-outs along this stretch that require a little care and agility to navigate.

A couple more downed trees block the path as one nears Pico Blanco Camp, but they are no big deal to climb over or under. If one plans on taking stock over this trail they better be carrying a chainsaw (it's *not* within Wilderness) and riding a mule, and have a lot of time to spend.
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Little Sur Trail

Postby Site Administrator on Tue May 26, 2009 8:58 am

* USFS Trail #1E03
* Parking: Old Coast Road, Bottchers Gap $5/Day
* Watersheds: South Fork Little Sur River
* Junctions: Manuel Peak Trail
* Connects: Old Coast Road with Manuel Peak Trail on Launtz Ridge
* Camps: Pico Blanco Public Camp
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