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Weekender in CA
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Asher Cohen
(Asherc) - F
Weekender in CA on 06/07/2008 15:28:33 MDT Print View

I'm from Berkeley, California. I'm looking for a nice weekend backpacking trip to take with my friends. Something in the 6 mile-ish category. Ideally, there'd be some kind of swimming hole/hot springs where we camped. Sykes Hot Springs down in Big Sur looked really perfect, but I've heard it can get pretty crowded on weekends.

Any suggestions?


David T
(DaveT) - F
. on 06/07/2008 15:46:04 MDT Print View


Edited by DaveT on 11/20/2014 20:42:43 MST.

Asher Cohen
(Asherc) - F
Popularity on 06/07/2008 17:27:11 MDT Print View

That looks really nice. Do you know if it gets crowded there on summer weekends? My friends can be loud, and I'm not trying to ruin anyone else's trip.

Nathan Moody
(atomick) - MLife

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Point Reyes can get crowded on 06/07/2008 19:43:40 MDT Print View

It can definitely get crowded, but the noise impact depends on where you camp. Most campsites out there are meadows with maybe partial line of sight. At you'll find that the packed weekend trails, though, will vaporize once it nears sunset as the dayhikers leave.

Use the phone number for the NPS, at the URL listed above, and they'll give you a pre-recorded message saying which campgrounds are full which weekends. It's invaluable for trip planning.

I did a solo overnight out there last year; it's easy to link trails together for any level of difficulty or length. I did two 14-mile days and it was great..I think I went in August (super foggy, weekday, only a handful of other folks out there overnighting).

Point Reyes is like any other hiking destination on the California coast: beware of ticks, watch for intense poison oak, keep in mind the fog factor, and such. Wildcat Camp, at least, has food lockers and picnic tables.

Asher Cohen
(Asherc) - F
Weather on 06/07/2008 19:48:17 MDT Print View

That sound pretty good. Most of the rowdiness would be at night, anyway. I guess fog/wind is another concern of mine. For some of my friends, this will be their first time camping, and I'd like it to be enjoyable for them (hence the short hike, the swimming, etc). Do you think the weather would put a damper on the fun?

Aaron Sorensen
(awsorensen) - MLife

Locale: South of Forester Pass
Re: Point Reyes can get crowded on 06/08/2008 12:29:02 MDT Print View

I just went to Pt. Reyes last weekend.
It gets crowded but as soon as you get a mile off the main trail heads or from the camps, it gets A LOT better.

What ever route you take, just stay away from starting at the information center and away from trails that go directly from one of the parking lots to a camp.

The information center also has free black and white paper maps that have the milages on them.

Ken Helwig
(kennyhel77) - MLife

Locale: Scotts Valley CA via San Jose, CA
Point Reyes on 06/08/2008 12:43:04 MDT Print View

Most of the coastel camps are situated pretty close to each other. They fill up regularly, and can be quite noisy, if you don't mind impromptu music jams, etc. then it can be for you. Mind you, Point Reyes is quite pretty, but if I had a choice I would look into Ventana or Big Sur too. Just my two cents

Michael Skwarczek
(uberkatzen) - F

Locale: Sudamerica
Big Sur hatch on 06/09/2008 18:01:40 MDT Print View

Hey Ken (or anyone else)

Isn't this the time of year for the hatch of numerous and irritating winged critters? From what I've heard, but not entirely experienced, it can get fairly ugly. With all the rain, I'm wondering how it is right now.


Ken Helwig
(kennyhel77) - MLife

Locale: Scotts Valley CA via San Jose, CA
Weekender on 06/09/2008 18:29:49 MDT Print View

Dunno Michael, but I'd be willing to deal with them for a weekend out right now!!!!

Dylan Taylor
(nevadas) - F

Locale: California Coast
big sur is burning on 06/13/2008 15:59:26 MDT Print View

maybe the smoke from the fire down there will keep the bugs at bay...

no, its basically like full on summer down there right now. hot hot hot. i would think that the bugs would've come and gone. except for that famous big sur bug...

as a "funny" side note: we hiked into pico blanco a little over a month ago. the ticks were going nuts; plus we crossed a baby rattler in the trail. being semi-compulsive about ticks i was checking myself regularly. my buddy not so much. i found a couple going for the "forbidden zone" (yes, that place) but was able to get them off before they latched on.

when we got back, my buddy discovered the next morning that he had a tick embedded in his side. he ended up going to the emergency room b/c he couldnt get it out. doc in sacramento had to surgically remove it and my buddy ended up with a few stitches. ouch! and to add insult to injury, the tick tested positive for lymes.

too bad i forgot the deet. that wont happen again.

to original poster: yes, sykes gets crowded. very crowded. were talking like 40-50 people in a fairly narrow canyon. and the springs are small. theres 3 of them. they fit only one person at a time, except for the top spring. that holds two, but its very cozy.

Edited by nevadas on 06/13/2008 16:03:14 MDT.