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North Coast Ridge Trail

Trail Report

In the form below, select the date you used the trail and a rating of its general passability. Follow up with a detailed narrative of specific conditions, needed repairs, etc. To keep reports accurate, please indicate which section of the trail you used, and please post separate reports for separate trails. For example, if you hiked from China Camp to Pine Valley, report on Pine Ridge Trail from China Camp to Church Creek Divide, then post a separate report on Carmel River Trail from Church Creek Divide to Pine Valley. “Trip reports” involving numerous trails belong on the Ventana Discussion forum, not here! If you are unsure about the name of a trail, don’t guess, simply consult this map. To protect opportunities for discovery and solitude, the moderators may edit or delete reports that reference sensitive features like unofficial trails, cross-country routes, hot springs or cultural sites. Thank you for contributing to this valuable community resource and keeping Wilderness wild!



Enter the code exactly as it appears. All letters are case insensitive.
Wilderness Freeway: Heavily used and well maintained.
Clear: No obstacles and tread well defined.
Passable: Some brush and/or deadfalls, tread evident.
Difficult: Brushy and/or many deadfalls, faint tread.
Impassable: Completely overgrown or tread obliterated.

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Expand view Topic review: North Coast Ridge Trail

Re: North Coast Ridge Trail

Post by awbell on Mon Jun 15, 2020 1:15 pm

Date Hiked: June 14, 2020
General Condition: Passable (some brush and/or deadfalls, tread evident)

Hiked almost the entire length of this trail, from North Coast Ridge Road to the junction with Gamboa trail. Pantilat's description from January was helpful and spot-on.

Between Rodeo Flat and Tin Can Camp was fairly brushy in places, but never too bad for too long. We did some pruning to thin out the worst parts of this section. The rest was reasonably clear with great ridgeline views.

Redondo Spring: seeping just enough to leave a line of wet dirt. We turned the knob but nothing happened. Either this spring is drying up for the season or we didn't figure out how to use it properly.

Seasonal stream at volunteer use camp north of Rodeo Flat: totally dry

Cook Spring: flowing well

Re: North Coast Ridge Trail

Post by Rob on Wed May 27, 2020 12:58 pm

Date Hiked: May 23, 2020
General Condition: Clear (no obstacles and tread well defined)

Hiked from Lost Valley Connector to Rodeo Flat junction. Nice views, and breezy, which kept the biting flies from landing on me :) Still quite a few wildflowers blooming. Saw a number of horned lizards scurrying around, which is always a treat.

Redondo Spring was still seeping. The seasonal stream just before Rodeo Flat was in the process of drying up; just moist ground in places with a stagnant pool or two. What a difference a couple days can make.

Re: North Coast Ridge Trail

Post by Hydro-Logic on Tue May 26, 2020 12:39 am

Date Hiked: May 21, 2020
General Condition: Passable (some brush and/or deadfalls, tread evident)

Pantilat's report below is still accurate and I don't have much to add.

We hiked from Cook to LV Connector. Found water in the stream just after Rodeo Flat junction and a bit after that is Redondo Spring which is flowing but very slowly.

Re: North Coast Ridge Trail

Post by Matt G on Sun Apr 05, 2020 3:20 pm

Date Hiked: April 3, 2020
General Condition: Wilderness Freeway (Heavily used and well maintained)

hiked North Coast Ridge from marble peak to the Rodeo Flat trail turnoff. Total freeway, couldn't be easier. there's currently excellent water flowing in the spring just west of the Rodeo Flat turnoff.

Re: North Coast Ridge Trail

Post by pantilat on Mon Jan 13, 2020 6:41 pm

Date Hiked: January 12, 2020
General Condition: Passable (some brush and/or deadfalls, tread evident)

The North Coast Ridge Trail (NCRT) has three sections: (1) single track trail between the end of Cone Peak Road and Tin Can Camp, (2) overgrown fire road between Tin Can Camp and Rodeo Flat, and (3) recently cleared fire road (from Soberanes Fire operations) between Rodeo Flat and North Coast Ridge Road.

Section 1 - Cone Peak Road to Tin Can Camp (passable): The first issue encountered is the washed out gully described in reports below. With some care in dry conditions this can be crossed without undue risk. The trail is becoming overgrown with brush in spots (mostly ceanothus and scrub oak), particularly between the junction with Carrizo Trail and the junction with Cook Spring Camp Trail.

Section 2 - Tin Can CAmp to Rodeo Flat (passable): This section is an overgrown fire road last cleared in the Basin Complex. This section is a patchwork of parts that are still relatively clear, parts that have narrowed into single track, and other parts have been nearly fully reclaimed by interlocking brush. There are dozens of tree skeletons that have fallen on the road over the years, particularly when the road deviates from the crest of the ridge. Expect many downed trees and some brush but the way is always obvious on the fire road alignment. A fire break goes up and over mining ridge at the north end of this part (also cleared in Basin Complex) and I recommend taking this break instead of the NCRT alignment for the fantastic views at the summit of Mining Ridge.

Section 3 - Rodeo Flat to North Coast Ridge Road (clear): This section of fire road was last cleared in the Soberanes Fire. For the most part, any brush is still low to the ground making for a pleasant section between Rodeo Flat to the north end of the NCRT at the North Coast Ridge Road. Water is currently flowing well at the headwaters of Big Creek at the Volunteer Usecamp. The spring box at Redondo Spring was functioning (water came out of the pipe when turned on) but it was very dirty water. Perhaps it needed to be flushed out, but we did not wait for the box to refill to find out.

North Coast Ridge Trail

Post by LJeffers on Fri Nov 22, 2019 1:15 pm

Date Hiked: November 21, 2019
General Condition: Clear (no obstacles and tread well defined)

Hiked from Gamboa Trail junction on a Clear trail with only a couple of spots with narrow and soft tread on steep hillside until a quarter mile before the end of Cone Peak Road. Other reports mention the washed out gully at that point but do not imply that it presents a challenge to cross. Perhaps I am growing excessively cautious but I would rate this as a dangerous spot. It is open and clear of brush, but the polished granite rock was steeply sloped and covered with loose gravel and leaves. One report suggested dropping below the rock outcropping into the runoff chanel, but that was full of loose rock and appeared equally unprotected. In rain or snow, especially with a pack, I would consider this a real obstacle to anyone trying to enter the wilderness from the end of the Cone Peak Road.
It has been a decade since I last took this trail, but I do not remember any issues at this point then. It is easily accessible from the road for repair efforts, but might require an expensive effort to bridge the gully between the two ends of the old graded road bed.

Re: North Coast Ridge Trail - Bee Camp Trail

Post by seagoat1724 on Sat Jul 20, 2019 4:11 pm

Date Hiked: October 9, 2018
General Condition: Passable

Upper Bee Camp Trail - unable to post on trail link
Trail is passable. First part is very overgrown with thick interwoven brush. After that is clear.
Note: No trail markers for turn off which is not very obvious. Camp is nice but nowhere to go really and down in a hole.

Re: North Coast Ridge Trail

Post by seagoat1724 on Sat Jul 20, 2019 4:04 pm

Date Hiked: October 9, 2018
General Condition: Clear (no obstacles and tread well defined)

Between end of Road and Rodeo Flat Trail Junction
Trail is good and mostly clear but a little bit of brush. The old road is there so tread is obvious.

Re: North Coast Ridge Trail

Post by SMoore on Mon Jun 24, 2019 3:59 pm

Date Hiked: June 21, 2019
General Condition: Clear (no obstacles and tread well defined)

This report covers ONLY the southernmost 1.4 miles of trail from the Cone Peak Road trailhead to the junction with Gamboa Trail. This section of trail is basically CLEAR and easy going. There's a little bit of encroaching brush on the switchbacks up to where the trail meets the Cone Peak Ridge Use Trail, but that's really the only issue. Otherwise it's wide open and smooth sailing. This is one of the few trails in the Ventana trail network that comes anything close to being a flat, horizontal hike, and it offers some inspiring views east to the Salinas Valley and west to the Pacific Ocean, so it can be a good beginner's hike. However, if planning to hike it with small kids, please note that the trail skirts along the top of some steep slopes (almost cliffs) immediately after the aforementioned switchbacks. Also, there's a place only a 1/4 mile or so from the trailhead where the trail crosses a steeply sloping bedrock outcrop over a ravine. If wet or slippery, or if the rock breaks loose underfoot, this could be a hazardous spot.

Re: North Coast Ridge Trail

Post by sur_nic on Sat May 11, 2019 9:22 pm

Date Hiked: May 11, 2019
General Condition: Passable (some brush and/or deadfalls, tread evident)

Hiked from the cone peak road terminus to a wee bit north of the Arroyo Seco Trail intersection. There were a couple tight spots w/ encroaching brush on the sides but no big falls/blowdowns, 1 or two firs/pines that looked like they had been down a while, very minimal poison oak, a reasonable amount of flies so head net was useful.

water was flowing at cook springs for a refill on the way.

rattlesnake season is on.

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