Cone Peak Area questions

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C M Heard
Posts: 303
Joined: Mon Sep 15, 2008 8:45 pm

Re: Cone Peak Area questions

Post by C M Heard »

Other folks have (correctly) pointed out that the area remains closed to public entry at this time, but did not answer all of your questions. I'll try to do so.

- The Cone Peak area was spared from the recent fires, and trail maintenance work that was going on before the fires has resumed, although the area remains closed to public entry at this time. See or call the district office at (831) 385-5434 for current closure information.

- Goat Camp is located in between two perennial streams, each about 1/4 mile away from the camp. The water is excellent -- I've not bothered to filter or otherwise treat it for many years.

- Wood and charcoal campfires are not allowed anywhere in the forest. Stoves are OK with permit. Fire restrictions will remain in place until the official end of fire season (IIRC, that occurs when we get 1" of rain).

One thing that you did not ask about, and should have, is the condition of the trails. When I was working on the upper Vicente Flat Trail last spring I encountered lots of folks wanting to do the Cone Peak Loop (as I presume is your goal as well) and I always made a point of telling them that trail conditions are quite poor on the Stone Ridge Trail, and it is very easy to get lost if you've never been there before. Check the trail reports on this web site for the Stone Ridge, Gamboa, Cone Peak, and Vicente Flat trails for more information, and be aware that conditions on the lower Gamboa Trail (between Trail Spring Camp and the Ojito saddle) are actually worse than stated in those reports (one person reported a downed tree every 100 feet).

In view of the closure, you might want to consider planning a trip in the Silver Peak Wilderness instead. My guess is that the Cone Peak area trails will remain closed until fire season ends, and that usually does not happen until November or December.


Mike Heard
Posts: 60
Joined: Thu Sep 04, 2008 11:43 am

Re: Cone Peak Area questions

Post by bigsurkate »

And I would add two things: One, if you are caught in the forest north of Nacimiento-Fergusson Rd., it is a misdemeanor carrying a $5,000 fine and/or 6 months in jail; Two, there are NO campfires allowed anywhere, even south of N-F Rd.,, in the developed campsites at Plaskett and Kirk Creek, never mind in the back country. It is a tinderbox, to put it mildly. This is also a misdemeanor carrying the same punishment. Propane stoves are allowed, but ONLY with a permit, which you can obtain from the Multi-Agency Facility in Big Sur, or from the Pacific Valley USFS station.

You might want rethink your plans either the date or the place.

Re: Cone Peak Area questions

Post by steve »

The Cone Peak area is closed to entry due to the fire. Everything north of the Nacimento Fergusson Road is closed and probably will remain closed for at least the rest of the year and it may not open until some time in the spring.

Cone Peak Area questions

Post by JShelton »

I'm planning a group backpacking outing at the end of October and have
some questions about the trails near Cone Peak (Coast Ridge, Gamboa
and Vicente Flat).

- Was this area spared from the recent fires?
- How available/potable is water at Goat Camp?
- Are campfires allowed?

Any help is appreciated. Thanks!
Jeff Shelton
Redwood City, CA
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