Mansfield Ravine Trail

User avatar
jdoelman
Posts: 87
Joined: Tue Sep 02, 2008 11:47 am

Re: Mansfield Ravine Trail

Post by jdoelman »

Date Hiked: November 13, 2022
General Condition: Clear (no obstacles and tread well defined)
Willet-Plaskett Trail Map  Trailforks.png
The route to plaskett rd
User avatar
jdoelman
Posts: 87
Joined: Tue Sep 02, 2008 11:47 am

Re: Mansfield Ravine Trail

Post by jdoelman »

Date Hiked: November 13, 2022
General Condition: Clear (no obstacles and tread well defined)

Beautiful redwood trees then panoramic vistas when the JBL/klucas route is followed from hwy1 to plaskett rd.
As stated, take the hard right fork 200 ft back from the apparent deadend of the trail, from this fork a ruin can be found 50 ft below the trail, maybe the remains of a cistern?
From the fork, procede up then traverse a gossamer tread through open terrain to reach a more substantial tread traversing level and directly toward plaskett ridge.
klucas

Re: Mansfield Ravine Trail

Post by klucas »

Date Hiked: July 23, 2022
General Condition: Clear (no obstacles and tread well defined)

Hiked on 7/1/22 and 7/23/22. Trail was well-defined, some grass growing up in the trail in a few spots, but nothing getting in the way of the hike. Near the end of the officially reported trail, the trail splits in the last redwood grove of the trail. The path on the left leads to a rock outcrop and the tread fades into overgrown brush. The path on the right is a sharp turn back up. There were two trees flagged with red tape near the edge of the savanna atop the ridge. These are helpful to finding your way back should you return along the trail.

To access the north-south trending Plaskett Ridge from Mansfield Ravine, you have to pick a path up the steep grassy slopes surrounded by ponderosa pines until you reach the much more level and gradual east-west ridgeline. Make note of your surroundings so you can find your way back, as the path from Mansfield Ravine to the east-west ridge is not obvious. From there, you can continue east along a well-defined path through the savanna that continues all the way up to another steep section. You again have to climb up some steep slope making your own switchbacks. It is very open grassland and not brushy at all. There is a horizontal path that roughly follows an elevation contour paralleling Plaskett Ridge. It continues to the right (south and a little east), going through some wooded areas and clearings, eventually intersecting Plaskett Ridge Road at a big valley oak tree. Take care regarding the locals who live atop Plaskett, they were very grumpy to me when I chanced upon them on the road.

Water in the ravine was slow but present. No water at all above the river bottom.
User avatar
jbl
Posts: 213
Joined: Mon Sep 15, 2008 3:57 pm

Mansfield Ravine Trail

Post by jbl »

Date Hiked: October 16, 2021
General Condition: Clear (no obstacles and tread well defined)

Despite Gary's 2019 report I expected this trail to be in bad shape given the intense and unprecedented rain that hit the central coast in January and the fact that it doesn't get much use, but I was extremely pleasantly surprised to find the entire trail to be in Clear to Wilderness Freeway condition for its entire length. There are a few trees down across the trail here and there, either stepunders or stepovers (some stepovers can be completely be stepped over if you are tall, and if not someone has cut notches in them to be used as steps).

Zero water was running in the creek, this is the first time I've seen that since I first on this trail in late 00s.

This is a true hidden gem that is in a huge forest of redwoods until you almost get to the end of the trail. At the end of the trail on the left there's a raised flat spot which is great for lunch.

For the adventurous, once you are at the end of the trail, turn around and about 200 feet from trail's end at a spot where the trail curves slightly right you will see a somewhat obvious track that goes straight ahead along the sidehill, if you follow it it continues along the sidehill, climbing slightly, and ultimately takes you out onto a VERY STEEP grassy ridge, if you then turn left and climb that ridge you'll come out onto the main ridge which borders the right side of Mansfield Ravine (Shouey Ridge), there is an obvious track up along this ridge (which is bordered by pine forest on the left and is all grass with wonderful views on the right) which you can follow up for continuing expansive views (but there is private property at the top so do not venture up all the way up there)
User avatar
gfelsman
Posts: 300
Joined: Thu Aug 28, 2008 9:33 pm

Re: Mansfield Ravine Trail

Post by gfelsman »

Date Hiked: September 29, 2019
General Condition: Clear (no obstacles and tread well defined)

From a friend, the Willet Trail is now clear. .

Down trees have been removed, poison oak cut back and the tread improved (still some loose rock in a few places) . The steep trail is a workout, but the scenery is worth it. BTW, there are two trail heads for this hike, one at Pacific Valley ranger (fire) station and one on HW1 just south of the ranger station. More parking on HW 1
Al Normandin

Re: Mansfield Ravine Trail

Post by Al Normandin »

Date Hiked: January 8, 2016
General Condition: Passable (some brush and/or deadfalls, tread evident)

Trail conditions very similar to my submission a year ago. Great trail at the beginning but gets brushy with a few trees down as you get further up the trail. No dangerous spots, as the supporting structure of the original trail and road is excellent. The trail still dead ends at snake rock without any attempts to make a feeble trail that plods on beyond the end.
Al Normandin

Re: Mansfield Ravine Trail

Post by Al Normandin »

Date Hiked: January 8, 2015
General Condition: Passable (some brush and/or deadfalls, tread evident)

Several trees down in the trail. Many could be climbed over, others had to be hiked around. Loose branches were cleared, and the trail was easily passable. Met an elderly hiker who lived along the trial many years ago. He called the end of the trail with the beautiful lookout "Snake Rock".
User avatar
jack_glendening
Posts: 704
Joined: Thu Oct 29, 2009 12:03 am

Re: Mansfield Ravine Trail

Post by jack_glendening »

Date Hiked: July 8, 2014
General Condition: Wilderness Freeway (Heavily used and/or well maintained)

Someone has been doing some intense work on this trail - it's in the best shape I've ever seen. In particular, a mess high up on the trail has been cleared out.
Big Sur Trailmap: https://bigsurtrailmap.net
User avatar
jbl
Posts: 213
Joined: Mon Sep 15, 2008 3:57 pm

Mansfield Ravine Trail

Post by jbl »

Date Hiked: May 3, 2014
General Condition: Passable (some brush and/or deadfalls, tread evident)

A group of us came down the Mansfield Ravine Trail today. The upper (narrower) section (final ~1/3) has deteriorated quite a bit since January and my rating is downgraded to Passable; numerous trees and branches of various sizes have come down (all negotiable) and the brush (and small, low redwood branches) is encroaching a lot, especially in the last 1/3 mile. The lower (wider) section (first ~2/3) is Wilderness Freeway. This is still one of the most beautiful unknown trails in the area.
User avatar
jbl
Posts: 213
Joined: Mon Sep 15, 2008 3:57 pm

Mansfield Ravine/Willett Trail cont. up to Plaskett Ridge Rd

Post by jbl »

Date Hiked: January 18, 2014
General Condition: Clear (no obstacles and tread well defined)

I hiked up the Mansfield Ravine/Willett Trail with 4 others (one of whom was 4-legged) on Saturday, and found it to be Clear to Wilderness Freeway for its entire length.

There were a few trees down along the trail, some of which we were able to clear but some of which will require a bigger saw (here are a few):
We couldn't do anything with this tree
We couldn't do anything with this tree
Another tree-before...
Another tree-before...
...and after
...and after
Fortunately you can easily get around this one
Fortunately you can easily get around this one
The tread is in great shape, and all along the trail there is much impressive rockwork, including the below:
Stone Stairs; there is also some incredible rockwork (not shown in picture) on the side of the hill here
Stone Stairs; there is also some incredible rockwork (not shown in picture) on the side of the hill here
Rockwork supporting trail
Rockwork supporting trail
The brush has been cut back since my last time up here so you rarely need to push through anything.

Once we reached the end of the trail (this is in forest; there’s very small clearing where the trail ends, and a kind of rocky platform to the left with great views down canyon), we headed up towards the Shouey Ridge on a use trail that doubles back from where the Mansfield Ravine Trail ends. [PS--on a prior occasion I explored the "continuation" of the Mansfield Ravine Trail past the ostensible end of the trail (the trail continues a bit beyond this point deeper into the head of the ravine) but the route quickly petered out, the brush (and fallen branches and trees) blocked the way, the gully got extremely steep and deep and I was unable to find a pathway forward]

A very big tree has fallen across the use trail about 100’ up and this brought other things down with it, but there seems to be an established workaround going just above this mess; the use trail generally follows a contour in the reverse direction from the Mansfield trail below and eventually comes out onto a steep grassy subridge of the Shouey Ridge; at that spot there are some great ocean views and this view of Twin and Cone Peaks:
@2,000', first views of Twin and Cone Peak
@2,000', first views of Twin and Cone Peak
We headed up this subridge to the Shouey Ridge, and then followed the Shouey Ridge all the way to the top where it hits the Plaskett Ridge Road at about 3,100’:
Knarled Oak along Shouey Ridge
Knarled Oak along Shouey Ridge
On the way up Shouey Ridge...
On the way up Shouey Ridge...
...getting closer to the top
...getting closer to the top
Lunch in the shade of a Manzanita
Lunch in the shade of a Manzanita
Twin, Cone and Serra Peaks viewed from our Lunch Spot
Twin, Cone and Serra Peaks viewed from our Lunch Spot
Someone's backyard near Plaskett Ridge Road
Someone's backyard near Plaskett Ridge Road
View from the Plaskett Ridge Road
View from the Plaskett Ridge Road
New Report