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THANK YOU FOR READING THIS IMPORTANT INFORMATION - updated October 10, 2020

Despite the closure of public lands, many Big Sur businesses (including private campgrounds) are open for business. Call the business you wish to visit ahead of travel for hours of operation. 

As of 6 PM on 9/21/2020, Highway 1 is fully open along the Big Sur coast. 

Most other roads in the region are closed.   

US Forest Service Managed Lands - Though 98% contained as of this date, the Dolan Fire continues to burn in the Ventana Wilderness and its trails and backcountry camps are closed. The Silver Peak Wilderness remains closed. Effectively, the entire Monterey Ranger District of Los Padres National Forest is closed.  Click here for the Forest Closure Order dated 10/09/2020.  This link includes a Forest Closure Map.    

Fines for entering closed areas can be up to $10,000.  

State Parks

The following are open for day use:  Point Lobos State Natural Reserve, Garrapata State Park - Soberanes Canyon Trail, Andrew Molera State Park, and Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park (go online or call to find out if their campgrounds are open) 

The following remain closed: Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park, John Little State Natural Reserve, Limekiln State Park, Point Sur State Historic Park 

KNOW BEFORE YOU GO (additional US Forest Service information for the Monterey Ranger District): Please note that the information above is oftentimes more up-to-date than the US Forest Service site. Call 831-385-5434 with questions. 

Ventana Wilderness Forums • View topic - Silver Peak - Trail or No Trail

Silver Peak - Trail or No Trail

This is the place for general discussion and backcountry information.

Moderators: Betsy M, dknapp1

Silver Peak - Trail or No Trail

Postby jbl on Sat Nov 21, 2020 6:21 pm

I will sometimes refer to Alltrails for information about areas I haven't been to and sometimes I find some useful information, but I would not rely on Alltrails for any up to date or accurate information about any unofficial trails in the Ventana or Silver Peak Wildernesses; the one shown in the OP's post is a good example as it shows a trail down Villa Creek Canyon from Villa Creek Camp to Highway 1 when no such trail exists and it would be a very very difficult slog to get down that way. Also that Buckshank Ridge trail that is highlighted on the map in the OP's post is not a trail at all and involves some serious bushwhacking and route finding. The only reliable information sources are those posted by Jack on https://bigsurtrailmap.net/, and the paper map put out by Green Trails--https://www.mountaineers.org/books/books/big-sur-ventana-wilderness-ca-no-125sx-green-trails-maps.

All this talk about the trails makes me want to get out there, hopefully it will reopen soon!
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Re: Silver Peak - Trail or No Trail

Postby Parshman on Sat Nov 21, 2020 10:53 am

I love that map ! But it would be a bad idea to plan a trip using that. Several fascinating trails are shown but don't exist. And at least one that should be shown but is not (Villa Camp to Alder Creek Camp). I have seen the trail from Villa camp down to highway one on several maps, but was that ever a trail?
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Silver Peak - Trail or No Trail

Postby jbl on Sat Nov 14, 2020 11:50 pm

Once Silver Peak Wilderness opens up...
Definitely read all the comments in the discussion that is linked in Jim Ringland's prior post as among those comments were some very detailed first-hand information from several folks who have spent a bit of time in the Silver Peak environs. As I said in my post in that discussion--much of that territory is not for the faint of heart!
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Re: Silver Peak - Trail or No Trail

Postby Jim Ringland on Mon Nov 09, 2020 11:37 pm

There was a discussion about this route and others in the area back in April 2019. See the thread "Help Wanted! Loop through Silver Peak" at http://www.ventanawild.org/forums/ventana-discussion/1796 .
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Re: Silver Peak - Trail or No Trail

Postby mikesplain on Mon Nov 09, 2020 3:41 pm

There's definitely no official trail, it's an old dozer line that folks use as a cross country route. As Mr. Felsman indicates, the entire wilderness is closed, but once it's open again, please use the maps at- https://bigsurtrailmap.net/
Alltrails & Caltopo have basically no quality control & are not to be trusted, especially in the Big Sur region.
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Re: Silver Peak - Trail or No Trail

Postby gfelsman on Wed Nov 04, 2020 9:06 am

The route you speak of may be a deer trail or heavily overgrown. Be prepared for some heavy bushwhacking.

At this time the Silver Peak Wilderness is closed to the general public. It will remain closed until the Dolan Fire is declared out.
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Silver Peak - Trail or No Trail

Postby stefanie_g on Tue Nov 03, 2020 5:48 pm

Is there an official trail that runs past Silver Peak? CalTopo and AllTrails shows a trail running from Lion Den Campground, past Silver Peak, and connecting north to Buckeye Trail.

And does anyone have water source information? Seasonal streams or creeks?
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