California Coastal Trail Association

Connecting Trails and Communities

The California Coastal Trail

Imagine a ribbon of coastal protection stretching 1,200 miles down California’s magnificent coastline from Oregon to Mexico. This is the California Coastal Trail. At present the trail is approximately two thirds complete. Coastwalk California is the only statewide non-profit working to complete the Trail. We partner closely with the State Coastal Conservancy in this endeavor.

The California Coastal Trail Association

In 2013, Coastwalk California, with help and funding from the State Coastal Conservancy, launched the California Coastal Trail Association (CCTA). The Association will work to develop a collaborative network of cities, counties and other agencies that own a strand of the California Coastal Trail. Coastwalk is also receiving technical assistance from the National Park Service for this project. This network will share Trail information and resources, working together to ensure that the Trail has the wherewithal and plans needed to realize its completion. This step is absolutely necessary not only to manifest the vision of a continuous unbroken trail, but also to ensure the long term protection of California’s coastline.
The Association will bring together everyone who owns a segment or has a stake in the CCT— cities, counties, local agencies, land trusts and other stakeholders.

  • The Purpose of the CCTA is to:
  • Expand awareness and use of the CCT
  • Promote tourism and economic development related to the CCT
  • Help CCT owner/managers with information, mapping and support so they can be
  • successful in funding, completing, managing and promoting their trail segment.
  • The CCTA will promote tourism and publicize the CCT as a destination by:
  • Showcasing the trail to the public on web sites, social media, and general publicity,
  • Providing maps and trail resources for the public, promoting its use,
  • Featuring individual community events, businesses and destination points in its Association promotions.
  • The CCTA will provide many other benefits to its members including:
  • An Annual CCT conference for information sharing, staff education, and development of regional strategies,
  • Information and mapping tools to track CCT progress in local areas,
  • Facilitating collaboration between public agencies,
  • Identifying funding sources and enabling CCT owner agencies to act as a coalition,
  • Connecting stakeholder groups with local government to facilitate public support and Trail promotion,
  • and much more….

The California Coastal Trail

The California Coastal Trail – a magnificent trail stretching from Mexico to Oregon – was mandated by Proposition 20 in 1972. That Proposition provided that “a hiking, bicycle, and equestrian trails system shall be established along or near the coast” and that “ideally the trails system should be continuous and located near the shoreline.” The Coastal Act of 1976 required local jurisdictions to identify an alignment for the California Coastal Trail in their Local Coastal Programs.

The California Coastal Trail will be a braided network of interconnecting trails and routes spanning California’s entire coast. Some strands of the braid will be improved multi-use trails open to hikers, bicyclists, equestrians, and mobility challenged users. Some strands will be light use, especially in sensitive habitats. Some will be rugged wilderness paths, others unimproved routes along beaches and yet others paved bicycle pathways.

During the 1980′s as Coastwalk grew, it gradually took on the challenge of seeing the Trail through to completion by leading camping and hiking trips along the coast. In 2008, to reflect our statewide work, Coastwalk renamed itself Coastwalk California. Our work to complete the Coastal Trail takes many forms.

The Trail provides for many types of uses depending on location — hiking, backpacking, walking, cycling, skating, equestrian. In some regions it is both a recreational and a transportation trail. Its variety is what makes it so wonderful. It is a tremendous asset to the people of California and Coastwalk’s aim is to encourage its use and to provide resources that make it a richer experience and more accessible for everyone.

Want to find out more about the Trail?

Visit our trail website and look at maps and more of the CCT. 

Learn More