Carmel River Trail

AaronP
Posts: 45
Joined: Tue Mar 12, 2019 8:07 pm

Re: Carmel River Trail

Post by AaronP »

Date Hiked: September 1, 2020
General Condition: Clear (no obstacles and tread well defined)

Trail is a wilderness freeway from Church Creek Divide down to Jack's Cabin. The use trail from the cabin to Pine Falls can get slim in places, but is passable.
The_Knoll_04

Re: Carmel River Trail

Post by The_Knoll_04 »

Date Hiked: July 2, 2020
General Condition: Difficult (brushy and/or many deadfalls, faint tread)

Carmel River Trail from Los Padres Dam

Things start interesting on this one. The "new" trail, flagged as described below, required cutting way up above the landslide to safely clear the area, and even then it's not for the faint-hearted. I would not advise doing this without proper gear, NO pets, and NO kids. Looking at some maps, and the drawings from Steve B, the trail will likely need to cut much higher to safely avoid the landslide as it does appear to have grown.

After that, things were pretty smooth sailing. The trail is overgrown, but mostly visible and certainly manageable. There were a few sections that were washed out, but all locations were passible. After the first river crossing the trail goes missing, but follow the instructions of other posters and you'll have no problem finding it again. We stopped for the night at the bluff campsite. The location that wasn't too buggy and had great access to water. The best part was not seeing another hiker during the duration of the trip.
nateb
Posts: 1
Joined: Tue May 26, 2020 11:06 am

Re: Carmel River Trail

Post by nateb »

Date Hiked: May 21, 2020
General Condition: Clear (no obstacles and tread well defined)

Only hiked from Church Creek Divide -> Pine Valley. Trail was clear, but there was a few brushy sections. Several sections had a lot of poison oak encroaching on the trail that was basically unavoidable. But this was only in a few spots, otherwise it was easy to avoid the oak. The tread was clear, trail is in great condition. Only a few dead trees down but nothing above knee height. It was smooth sailing from the divide down to Pine Valley.
Shozgood
Posts: 1
Joined: Mon Apr 13, 2020 3:12 pm

Re: Carmel River Trail

Post by Shozgood »

Date Hiked: May 16, 2020
General Condition: Impassable (completely overgrown or tread obliterated)

We thought we would be able to get around the slide, but it turned out to be a bit too difficult. Mostly because the poison oak was so bad. We were able to climb up the new switchbacks to get almost to the top, but were worried about the possibility of more exposure to the poison oak, so we turned back. I would love to know who exactly to contact in order to get the trail building moving forward. Lets write letters, call or send emails if it will help!
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Steve B
Posts: 108
Joined: Thu Aug 28, 2008 5:39 pm
Location: Del Rey Oaks, CA

Re: Carmel River Trail

Post by Steve B »

Date Hiked: May 7, 2020
General Condition: Impassable (completely overgrown or tread obliterated)

The slide above the lake has grown and we are forced to add more switchbacks to the top of the ridge to get around the slide. This will be a difficult climb to start a hike on the Carmel River Trail but we can find no other alternative. The trail is flagged and crews are ready to build the trail at no cost to Cal Am or the Forest Service, the only thing holding us back from opening the trail is red tape.

The photo below shows the original route in red and the new route in blue with the yellow dots to still be flagged.
Attachments
Flagged route in blue
Flagged route in blue
zenko

Re: Carmel River Trail

Post by zenko »

Date Hiked: April 2, 2020
General Condition: Wilderness Freeway (Heavily used and well maintained)

Hiked from the Great Divide down into Pine Valley. Beautiful and totally clear. A few grabby wild roses, but nothing too bad. Lots of signage down by the English cabin and at the divide. It would be great if there was a sign for the falls, too. I think I went down the right drainage, but the sun was setting so I turned around. If I had more confidence I was on the right path, I think I would've pushed on.
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Steve B
Posts: 108
Joined: Thu Aug 28, 2008 5:39 pm
Location: Del Rey Oaks, CA

Re: Carmel River Trail

Post by Steve B »

Date Hiked: January 30, 2020
General Condition: Impassable (completely overgrown or tread obliterated)

Carmel River Trail from Los Padres Dam

The Trail is still closed with a locked gate at the top of the dam due to a large slide on the trail/road; it is not possible to cross the slide. VWA volunteer wilderness ranges working as contractors (due to insurance reasons) have flagged a possible reroute above the slide and are awaiting approval from Cal Am engineers. Once we receive approval from Cal Am we have scheduled Gabilan Crews from Cal Fire for the last week of March to start the reroute work.
The trail will climb from the road just before the slide and climb about three hundred feet to get past the slide and then drop back to the road/trail. We are very limited as to where we can put the reroute and the reroute is not recommend for horse traffic due to the steepness and poor soil for trail construction. This is not an ideal solution for the trail, it will be a difficult climb compared to the old trail but we feel it is important to get this trail open for forest visitors because we have lost so much access to our forest trails.

Once we complete the reroute we will work with Cal Am to reopen the Carmel River Trail.
Attachments
Reroute
Reroute
pantilat
Posts: 116
Joined: Tue Jan 07, 2014 1:16 pm

Re: Carmel River Trail

Post by pantilat »

Date Hiked: November 16, 2019
General Condition: Difficult (brushy and/or many deadfalls, faint tread)

From Church Divide to Pine Valley: Wilderness Freeway. Water is still flowing well in the Carmel River at Pine Valley.

From Pine Valley to Hiding Canyon: Difficult. The climb to the saddle separating Pine Valley from Hiding Canyon has some blowdowns and encroaching brush (passable). The last few feet before the "Tourist Pasture" Gate (located at the saddle) were widely cleared, but conditions deteriorate quickly when descending into Hiding Canyon. Hiding Canyon has numerous blowdowns and lots of brush. The trail is heavily eroded in spots. The riparian areas are particularly bad with vines completely covering the trail and copious poison oak. The trail is still followable the whole way but pay particular attention at the many overgrown creek crossings (which currently still have flowing water). It'll be much easier to stay on the rough trail as it crosses the creek rather than forcing a path.
seagoat1724
Posts: 28
Joined: Sun May 26, 2019 3:39 pm

Re: Carmel River Trail

Post by seagoat1724 »

Date Hiked: October 23, 2018
General Condition: Clear (no obstacles and tread well defined)

Editor's Note: this report describes conditions from October, 2018.


Between Sulfer Springs Camp and Hiding Canyon Camp
Trail is good, tread is thin in some places and precariously sliding down slopes but easy to find and walk on. Lots of river crossings, would be difficult in high water. (Good but dangerous slopes.)

Between Hiding Canyon Camp and Round Rock Trail Junction
Trail is wilderness freeway.
seagoat1724
Posts: 28
Joined: Sun May 26, 2019 3:39 pm

Re: Carmel River Trail

Post by seagoat1724 »

Date Hiked: October 23, 2018
General Condition: Wilderness Freeway (Heavily used and well maintained)

Between Miller Canyon Trail Junction and Sulfur Springs Camp
Trail is wilderness freeway with a number of river crossings.
New Report