Ventana Wilderness Trails

IMPORTANT ROAD CLOSURE, FIRE CLOSURE, FIRE RESTRICTIONS, and CAMPING INFORMATION (updated October 2017)

ROAD CLOSURES: Replacement of the Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge just south of Big Sur Station is complete. Highway One is open from Carmel to Gorda. However, due to the Mud Creek slide, the road is closed from just south of Gorda from the north and just north of Ragged Point from the south ... making access to the Silver Peak Wilderness difficult. The Big Sur Information facebook page, updated by the Big Sur Chamber of Commerce, is a reliable source for up-to-the-minute road conditions in the Big Sur area. 

FIRE CLOSURE: As a result of the 2016 Soberanes Fire, much of the Ventana Wilderness remains CLOSED. This includes backcountry camps like Sykes, Terrace Creek, Barlow Flat, Pat Spring, Carmel River, Pico Blanco Public Camp, and many others. Unauthorized entry is punishable by a fine up to $5,000 and imprisonment up to six months.

Please review these links for details, and if you have questions, call the Monterey Ranger District of Los Padres National Forest at (831) 385-5434 before visiting the Ventana Wilderness.

05-07-51-16-22_Order_and_Memo.pdf

Soberanes Fire Closure Order 05-07-51-16-22 Map

Areas that are currently OPEN include the Cone Peak Trail Network, the Arroyo Seco area, The Indians, and the Silver Peak Wilderness

FIRE RESTRICTIONS: Effective June 14, 2017, Fire Restrictions are in place. Campfires are prohibited in the backcountry. Stoves are permitted with a valid permit which can be obtained hereCampfires are NEVER permitted along roadways or at unauthorized camping sites in Big Sur.  Bottom line, do not camp illegally and do not have a campfire unless you are 100% sure it is legal.  

LEAVE NO TRACE: With visitation to the Monterey Ranger District of Los Padres National Forest now concentrated in far fewer trails and camps, it is up to all of us to tread lightly on the land. Now more than ever, it is critical that all visitors practice Leave No Trace principles. 

CAMPING is NEVER permitted along Highway 1 and Nacimiento-Fergusson Road in Big Sur. Plan your trips well in advance to secure reservations at State Park and National Forest campgrounds. There is no reservation system for backcountry camps. Only use established camps. Never make new campsites.   

STATE PARKS: Many State Park trails in the Big Sur area are also CLOSED. Call the State Park that you wish to explore to determine if trails are open. A handy list of State Park phone numbers can be found at the Big Sur Chamber of Commerce Camping Guide.

Current conditions for all Big Sur area State Parks. 

pine-ridge-trailLupines enhance the view towards the Church Creek drainage

 

Note: The western end of the Pine Ridge Trail is by far the most heavily used trail on the Monterey Ranger District.

  • USFS Trail: #3E06
  • Parking: Big Sur Station, Tassajara Road
  • Cost: Parking Fee
  • Watershed: Arroyo Seco River, Big Sur River, Carmel River
  • Junctions: Church Creek Trail, Carmel River Trail, Bear Basin Connector, Bear Basin Trail, Black Cone Trail, Big Sur Trail, Terrace Creek Trail, Ventana Camp Trail
  • Connects: China Camp with Big Sur Station
  • Camps: Divide Camp, Pine Ridge Camp, Redwood Camp, Sykes Camp, Barlow Flat Camp, Terrace Creek Camp
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