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Old Baldy, Canada | photo by Cameron Schaus

Resources for the Monterey Bay Area

Monterey Bay Area State Parks

Andrew Molera - In the spectacular Big Sur area, this park is still relatively undeveloped and offers visitors great hiking, fishing and beachcombing. Miles of trails wind through meadows, beaches and hilltops. A primitive trail camp, popular with hikers and bikers, is located approximately one third mile from the parking area.

Fort Ord Dunes - The purpose of Fort Ord Dunes State Park is to perpetuate forever, for public use, inspiration, esthetic enjoyment, and education, an area along the central California Coast of unique natural beauty and scientific significance including sandy beaches and coastal dunes. All scenic, natural, cultural and recreational resources will be managed as a whole, preserving and restoring the natural charter of the park in accordance with ecological principles.

Fremont Park - This park features expansive views of Monterey Bay, from its hiking trails in the grasslands of the higher peaks of the Gavilan Range. Other views include the San Benito Valley, Salinas Valley, and the Santa Lucia Mountains east of Big Sur.

Garrapata - The park has two miles of beach front, with coastal hiking and a 50-foot climb to a beautiful view of the Pacific. With 2,879 acres, the park offers diverse coastal vegetation with trails running from ocean beaches into dense redwood groves.

Julia Pfeiffer Burns - This state park is named after Julia Pfeiffer Burns, a well respected pioneer woman in the Big Sur country. The park stretches from the Big Sur coastline into nearby 3,000-foot ridges. It features redwood, tan oak, madrone, chaparral, and an 80-foot waterfall that drops from granite cliffs into the ocean from the Overlook Trail.

Limekiln - The park features breathtaking views of the Big Sur Coast, the beauty of the redwoods, the rugged coast and the cultural history of limekilns. The park has 33 campsites.

Monterey (State Historic Park) - State historic parks preserve places and objects of statewide historic significance. Monterey State Historic Park served as California's capital under Spanish, Mexican and U.S. rule. The U.S. flag was first officially raised in California here on July 7, 1846, bringing 600,000 square miles, including California, into the Union.

Pfeiffer Big Sur - The park has 1006 acres of redwoods, conifers, oaks, sycamores, cottonwoods, maples, alders and willows - plus open meadows. Wildlife includes wild boars, raccoons, skunks, and birds, such as water ouzels and belted kingfishers.

Point Sur (State Historic Park) - The park, with an active US Coast Guard light station, sits 361 feet above the surf on a large volcanic rock. First lit on August 1, 1889, the light station has remained in continuous operation. Four lighthouse keepers and their families lived at the site until 1974 when the light station was automated. Today, the buildings are being restored as a complete turn of the century (1889-1929) light station.

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