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Exploring Outdoor California from Monterey


McWaaaay (lotta people) Falls

   Note: Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park (where McWay Falls is located) is open, but the trails on the east side of Hwy 1 are closed until further notice because of the 2016 Soberanes Fire. You can updated information about all Big Sur area parks along Hwy 1...

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Third Time’s the Charm

  Note: (January 11, 2018) ANDREW MOLERA State Park is open. The seasonal footbridge crossing the Big Sur River has been removed. Hikers must wade across the river to access these open trails: Creamery Meadow Trail, Ridge Trail, Bluffs Trail,...

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Epiphany, with a View

  Note: This trail on the east side of Hwy 1 in currently closed due to the 2016 Soberanes fire.  The trails and the beach on the west side of Hwy 1 are open.  Please check here for the latest information on all of the parks in the Big Sur area. This is...

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Water, woods and wrocks

Limekiln State Park was one of the state parks on Highway 1 we hadn’t seen yet, so Susie and I packed ourselves and a cooler into the trusty Element, left the chihuahuas behind (to guard the ranch and bark at the clouds) and headed south on Highway 1. We passed all...

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Wah-wahs in the Woods

Nellie and Shiloh needed a vacation. At some point last winter I went to a snowshoeing class at the REI in Marina.  I was the only person there, and Sierra, the instructor from REI, bless her heart, gave the talk anyway.  I was still holding out hope for...

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Two for One

Note: (January 2018) This trial is open on the west side of Hwy 1, but many of the trails on the east side of Hwy 1 throughout Big Sur are closed because of the 2016 Sobreanes fire.  Check this link for the latest information on trail access and park information....

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Fields of Gold

    Well, actually, you have to work a bit before you get to the fields of gold. Before that, there’s a 7 mile washboard road that’s a field of dust and gravel. Especially if you find yourself 50 yards behind another car that’s heading to the same place....

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Bath Time in Birdland

I was walking around the ranch on a hot and dry Sunday. I noticed that one of the drip irrigation lines had a crack in it.  I looked up and saw a dozen or so of the neighborhood birds enjoying the water being sprayed into the shrubs, taking advantage of the...

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Best Views, No Bull

Toro County Park, dammit. It took two, seven-mile hikes to get it right. The first time I set out on foot at Toro County Park I parked right there at the front gate. I really should have driven up to the 3rd parking lot, which would have put me on the trail past all...

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Mission: The Sequel

We didn’t plan on making back-to-back mission trips, but Susie and I had to swing by LA Hearne in King City for some ranch supplies and decided to travel about 45 more minutes south to the Mission San Antonio de Padua. We left King City on Jolon Road (G14), which is a...

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The Mission

I try and limit my posts to our trudging about in the great outdoors around Monterey and central California, but occasionally we find some great indoors to visit and write about.  The Old Mission at San Juan Bautista fits that category in a beautiful and quiet...

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The Birds: Zmudowski State Beach

I took advantage of the late summer light last week and squeezed a little more into a day that would have normally ended when I packed up and left my desk at the UCSC Extension in Santa Clara. I decided to take my life in my hands and head over Hwy 17 into...

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