Big Sur Spectacular

Experience the spectacular coastline of Big Sur!

Big Sur Spectacular

Big Sur Spectacular

Big Sur Spectacular

Big Sur Spectacular

Big Sur Spectacular

May 31- June 5, 2020

6 days/5 nights

Rating: Strenuous with moderate options

Max Capacity: 20

$775 Non-Member Price

$750 Coastwalk Member Price

This is Coastwalk’s first walk in Big Sur for several years so, while we have pre-hiked these trails, Big Sur winter weather is as wild as its coastline so be prepared for beauty, redwoods, poison oak, wildflowers, ticks, jaw-dropping ocean views (for which we will pay in steep climbs) and changes to our itinerary. The long hikes will be strenuous; shorter hikes of less than 3 miles with minimum elevation changes will be available. These hikes will provide participants additional time to loiter, explore, and experience a smaller but no less stunning area.




We will first explore Big Sur’s south coast, camping at Plaskett Creek, less than ½ mile from beautiful Sand Dollar Beach. Every day promises sweeping ocean views of this barely tamed stretch of coast. Using Plaskett as our base we will take two hikes high in the rugged Ventana and Silver Peak Wilderness, walking through canyons, ridges, flats and redwoods. Then we pack up and move north to Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park which will serve as our base for two more hikes, one in the Park and one along the coastal bluffs of Andrew Molera State Park.


Camping & parking fees; guided hiking; nightly dinners; shuttle transportation; gear haul; evening programs; dinners, hot water/coffee, light breakfast and lunch fixings.


You will be camping out each night so you will need appropriate gear including sleeping bag, mattress or pad, and tent with rain fly. Since seating at some of the camp sites is minimal, we recommend you bring a folding chair. These items and your personal duffel bag will be transported from camp to camp. You will not need to carry them during the day.


  • Nights 1, 2 & 3: Plaskett Creek Campground – no showers
  • Nights 4 & 5: Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park – hot showers (Token-operated. Campers may purchase tokens in $1 increments at the entrance kiosk or select bathrooms throughout the campground. $1 = 2 tokens = 4 minutes).


3 to 10 miles per day


Canyon, ridge and bluff trails, varying surfaces from sand to gravel to mud. Trekking poles provide excellent stability, especially while crossing tricky terrain and streams.


There are no additional fitness requirements for this trip.


Cars will be parked at or near each campground.


Ocean temperatures are normally in the mid- to upper-50s year-round so expect moderate temperatures with highs in the mid-70s and lows in the high-40s. There may be morning fog. Rain is unlikely but is a possibility. It can be windy on the bluffs, beaches and ridge lines.


There are no showers at Plaskett Creek. Consider bringing a solar shower bag if you have one.


Meet at Plaskett Creek Campground May 31. We encourage you to carpool to Big Sur; information about carpooling TBA.

Hikers will have their own vehicles at each of the camp sites so they may bring and keep whatever they like in them.


Coffee (and decaf), juice, and milk will be available each morning, as well as a variety of breakfast and lunch foods. Soft drinks will be available each day to refresh you contingent on donations to the food kitty.

Dinners are provided each evening.

You will only need to carry lunch items, water and layers while hiking.


Cash for showers at Pfeiffer Big Sur state Park.




May 31 – Arrive for orientation no later than 1pm

  • Hike to Pacific Valley Bluffs – 3 miles out and back.
  • Camp at Plaskett Creek

June 1 – Maps #1 & 2

  • Shuttle to Kirk Creek Campground (5-mile/10-minute drive) & Limekiln State Park (7.5-mile/12-minute drive).
  • Long hike: Vicente Flat Trail from Kirk Creek Campground to Vicente Flat, return – 10 miles out and back, 1700’.
  • Shuttle back to camp.
  • Camp at Plaskett Creek

June 2 – Maps #3 & 4

  • Shuttle to Cruikshank Trailhead (7.2-mile/11-minute drive) & Soda Springs Trail Trailhead (9.8-mile/15-minute drive).
  • Long hike: Cruikshank Trail to Upper Cruikshank Camp to Buckeye Trail to Salmon Creek Ranger Station– 8.5 miles, 1600’.
  • Shuttle back to camp.
  • Camp at Plaskett Creek

June 3 – Map #5 & 6

  • Pack up in morning, staff moves Coastwalk gear to Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park (35-miles/1-hour drive)
  • All vehicles moved and Coastwalkers will drive and park at Partingon Cove trailhead.
  • Long hikers drive from Plaskett Campground to Partington Cove Trailhead and Fire Road Trail – 24-mile/35-minute drive.
  • Long hike: Partington Cove/Tanbark Trail to Tin House to Fire Road Trail to Highway 1 to Partington Cove – 6.4 mile loop; 1900’. Walk down to Partington Cove – 1 mile out and back.
  • Drive to camp at Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park.

June 4 – Map #7

  • Shuttle to Andrew Molera SP
  • Long hike: Creamery Meadow Trail to Bluffs Trail to Panorama Trail to Ridge Trail – 9-mile loop, 1100’.
  • Short hike: Creamery Meadow Trail to Molera Beach, return via Beach Trail– 2-mile loop, flat.
  • Shuttle back to camp.
  • Goodbye drinks at Nepenthe
  • Camp at Pfeiffer Big Sur SP

June 5

  • Buzzards Roost – 5-mile loop, 800’.
  • Adios!


  • Hiking shoes, boots or sturdy walking shoes
  • Waterproof sandals
  • Spare walking shoes & laces
  • Comfy camp shoes
  • Hiking poles
  • Water-proof windbreaker/ or parka for cold nights
  • Long pants and long sleeve shirt (protection against sunburn, poison oak, and bugs)
  • Layers for upper body
  • Hat for sun protection that ties under chin
  • Beanie for cold, windy conditions
  • Other clothing – underwear, T-shirts, lots of socks, etc.
  • Bandana
  • Sunglasses with UV protection
  • Sunscreen (minimum 30 spf)
  • Natural bug repellant
  • Personal first aid kit (band aids, blister pads)
  • Personal medicines
  • Day pack
  • Plate, cup, bowl, and eating utensils
  • Sturdy Tupperware for leftovers
  • Flashlight & headlamp with new batteries
  • Spare batteries
  • Folding camp chair
  • Tent & Ground Cloth
  • Sleeping bag
  • Sleeping pad
  • REUSABLE Water Bottle
  • Trail snacks (power bars or jerky)
  • Credit Card & cash for camp showers and treats
  • Solar shower if there is no shower at campsite
  • Shower towel

What’s Included:

Breakfast, lunch and dinner will be provided.


  • Coffee: (Regular in percolator with caffeine free available upon request), Teas, Cocoa, Juice, Milk (1/2 & 1/2, 2% Milk, Soy & Almond Milks)
  • Sweeteners- (sugar, honey)
  • Yogurt
  • Biscotti
  • Hot Cereals (Instant Oatmeal, and prepare it yourself steel cut oats available)
  • Granola
  • Walnuts or assorted nuts
  • Fruit (fresh)- (Blueberries, Bananas, Apples, Oranges / Cuties)
  • Fruit (dried)- Raisins & Craisins


  • Breads- (Multi Grail & Gluten Free)
  • Almond Butter
  • Fruit spreads
  • Cold Cuts
  • Cheeses (sliced)
  • Condiments, (Mustard, Mayonnaise)
  • Butter, (Regular and dairy free)


  • Dinners are included unless otherwise noted and will be provided by Coastwalk’s Volunteer Food Angels. 

Our Chuckwagon Wrangler will do their best to accommodate you but if you have special dietary needs please bring your food in a small cooler and we will be sure to provide you with ice throughout the trip.

Bob Adams: I was born to a mom that loved taking her dogs for long walks. It was the 50’s & 60’s and San Francisco was a much less “developed” area, offering large areas to hike or drive to one of the many open coastal properties nearby for a daily 4-6-mile walk.

My dad would arrange family gatherings and camping adventures throughout the Western United States. I then spent 24 years flying Air Force Cargo Aircraft around the world which afforded me access to hiking and camping opportunities throughout the globe so that I was able to hike on every continent-including Antarctica!

Alone, with family or like-minded groups I have spent my years with a love of the outdoors. I spent 20 years as a RN at medical, surgical, oncology hospitals units.

 I joined Coastwalk several years ago for another opportunity to discover new hiking and camping experiences and have been a Chuckwagon Wrangler supporting Coastwalks in almost every coastal county. This is my first year as a Walk Leader & organizer and I look forward to sharing some of my favorite hiking areas with like-minded friends & coastal enthusiasts”.


Tom Bliss

A Southern California native, Bliss has walked the Del Norte, San Luis Obispo, Lost Coast, Catalina and Sonoma Coastwalks, as well as the Santa Monica Backbone Trail.




Volunteer Support Staff:

Donna Barett, Mike & Susie Minky, Gail Williams, Linda Schwaberaw.


Maps: Click on the links below if you would like to download and print your own maps.

Map #1 –


Map #2 –




Map #3 –

Map #4 –

Map #5 –




Map #6 –




Map #7 –