Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park

California, United States
provided by
 (6 votes, 6 reviews)
Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park features redwoods, conifers, oaks, sycamores, cottonwoods, maples, alders and willows - plus open meadows. Wildlife includes black-tail deer, gray squirrels, raccoons, skunks, and birds, such as water ouzels and belted kingfishers. Hikers can enjoy the many scenic trails, including a self-guided nature trail. Some campsites are along the Big Sur River. Big Sur Lodge is located in the park. The lodge has 61 guest rooms, a conference center, cafe, and a grocery store. Meeting rooms have space for groups of 10 to 125. Other rooms are available for smaller meetings and workshops, some with fireplaces and kitchens.
Getting There
The park is located 26 miles south of Carmel on Highway 1.

The Day Use Annual Pass is accepted at this park.
Seasons/Climate/Reccomended Clothing
The weather can be changeable. Layered clothing is advised.
Operating Hours
The park is open 1/2 hour before sunrise to 1/2 hour after sunset.
Telephone: 831-667-2315
Camping
Make Campground Reservations
Accessible Features
Camping
Ten designated accessible campsites provide accessible tables and fire rings, and are usable. Some sites have hard packed dirt surfaces; others have thick duff or loose soil. All campsites have water spigots nearby, some with accessible designs. Restrooms with showers: Five designated accessible facilities are available and generally accessible. Routes of Travel: Generally accessible paths connect sites and restrooms. Campfire Center: The Campfire Center and adjacent restroom is currently closed for remodeling.

Make Campground Reservations

Picnic Area
Group picnic area #3 has four accessible tables, but wheelchair users may require some help with water faucets, grills and unpaved surfaces. Restroom is fully accessible. Route of travel to and from this area is accessible.

Trails
The accessible Nature Trail was severely damaged by the Basin Complex Fire and subsequent storms and is currently closed pending site stabilization and repairs.

Other Information
Big Sur Lodge: Accessibility improvements have been made. Parking for autos and vans is accessible. Please call the Lodge concession at 800-424-4787 to see if your needs can be met.
Campground store and laundry: Accessible parking is available. An accessible path leads to store and laundry, but store aisles are narrow. Staff is available to assist customers in the store. Laundry room has adequate clear space to maneuver and assistance is available for reaching coin boxes.

Trails

Summary
Difficulty
Distance
Nature Trail at Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park
A short self-guided nature trail to explore the native plans and surrounding habitat of Pfeiffer Big Sur
Easy
0.3 mi/
0.5 km
Pfeiffer Fall and Valley View Trail
Take a nice hike through the redwoods to Pfeiffer Fall followed by a walk to a stunning view of the Big Sur valley below
Easy
2.0 mi/
3.2 km
Pine Ridge Trail to Sykes Hot Springs
A popular 10-mile hike through the Big Sur wilderness with a relaxing finish
Difficult
20 mi/
32 km
Guides
Pine Ridge Trail to Sykes Hot Springs
Pine Ridge Trail to Sykes Hot Springs
Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park, California, United States
 
Difficult: 20 miles, Multiple days
A popular 10-mile hike through the Big Sur wilderness with a relaxing finish
Pfeiffer Fall and Valley View Trail
Pfeiffer Fall and Valley View Trail
Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park, California, United States
 
Easy: 2.0 miles, 1 hour or less
Take a nice hike through the redwoods to Pfeiffer Fall followed by a walk to a stunning view of the Big Sur valley below
Nature Trail at Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park
Nature Trail at Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park
Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park, California, United States
 
Easy: 0.3 miles, 1 hour or less
A short self-guided nature trail to explore the native plans and surrounding habitat of Pfeiffer Big Sur
Community Trips
Starting the hike Video
Moss Photo
Banana slug Photo
Wet leaf Photo
Big Sur to Sykes Hot Springs
by chris on Jan 30, 2010
Pfeiffer Big Sur, California, United States
26 miles
David and I were ready to try some snow camping in Yosemite this weekend, but the weather report had other plans.  It was set to rain on the first day in Yosemite, and we decided that camping in snow while being rained on did not sound like a good use of a weekend (hopefully we will get some clear skies soon!).  Since we had psyched ourselves up for a backpacking trip for...
Big Sur River Valley Photo
Big Sur River Photo
Sykes Hot Springs Photo
Sykes Hot Springs Trailhead Photo
Sykes Hot Springs
by RedTailTrails on Aug 16, 2010
Big Sur, California, United States
9.1 miles
Sitting in Sykes Hot Springs might be one of the best experiences of your life… if you do it right. The Pine Ridge Trail offers a 20 mile roundtrip to Sykes and opportunities to go deeper into Los Padres National Forest. Following the Big Sur River with rollercoaster ridges, the trail has several camps along the way to break it up: Ventana, Terrace Creek, and Barlow Flats. After a long day, it...
Pfeiffer Falls Trailhead Photo
Pfeiffer Falls Trail Photo
Pfeiffer Falls Trail Photo
Pfeiffer Falls Trail Photo
Pfeiffer Fall and Valley View Trail
by chris on Nov 12, 2010
Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park, California, United States
2.0 miles
This short hike combined two of the more popular trails in Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park: Pfieffer Falls and Valley View.  Unfortunately, due to fire damage from 2008, part of the Pfeiffer Falls loop was closed for rehabilitation and reconstruction, but luckily the waterfall was still reachable.When I got to Peiffer Fall the water was barely trickling down, and my guess is that late spring may be a better time for this...
Monterey Coast Photo
Packing the Car Photo
hdrIMG_0347 Photo
Framing Photo
Big Sur to Sykes Hot Springs
by oruwu on Jan 30, 2010
Big Sur, California, United States
26 miles
Chris and I set off to explore the wilderness that is Big Sur, in hopes of camping near the Sykes hotsprings. However, we encountered a couple problems.Before we left on our journey, the area had seen relentless rain for two straight weeks. Fortunately for our outing, the rain let up while we were out and about. The hills were very moist and brooks were plentifully racing down towards Big Sur River and...
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Sykes Hot Springs Big Sur
by EwaSkB on Aug 26, 2010
Big Sur, CA
9.7 miles
It is a trip that in summer month will challenge your sanity for hiking 10 miles to hot springs when during the hike all you can think of is a cold bath.It is a medium to strenuous hike with views to kill for. There are a lot of signs of 2008 fire but also amazing examples of rebirth. We made frequent stops to soak our feet in cold creeks and enjoy the...
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Pine Ridge-Terrace Creek-Coast Ridge Road
by Touchstone on Apr 03, 2010
Big Sur, California, United States
14.0 miles
A hike up Pine Ridge to Terrace Creek, then to the top of the ridge and down the  Coast Ridge Road to Ventana Inn.   A scenic loop hike that takes in the highlites of Big Sur, California.
Big Sur Coast Photo
Trailhead Photo
Peaks and Valleys Photo
Ventana Wilderness = Inspired Photo
Sykes Camp
by laytonw on Jun 04, 2010
Big Sur, California, United States
27 miles
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Ventana Wilderness Wildflowers in May
by JoergDHS on May 08, 2012
Big Sur, California, United States
27 miles
Wildflower photos taken along the Pine Ridge Trail during a 3-day backpacking trip in May from the Big Sur Ranger Station to Redwood Camp.
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Ventana Wilderness Wildflowers in February/March
by JoergDHS on Feb 28, 2013
Big Sur, California, United States
23 miles
Wildflower photos taken along the Pine Ridge Trail during a 3-day backpacking trip in February/March from the Big Sur Ranger Station to Redwood Camp.
Ventana_0.jpg Photo
Ventana
by rab1bit on May 21, 2009
Posts, California, United States
0.9 miles

Reviews
erin_said
The Pine Ridge Trail is very steep coming out of Sykes Hot Springs on the downhill sections. Do not attempt if you have bad knees. There was lots of poison oaks, which is to be expected. The ticks were out IN FORCE when I went, so I can only imagine how much worse it will be during the summer. Wear lots of sunscreen and bug repellent, and be ready to pull those little suckers out if they get attached. The trail down to Ventana Camp is extremely steep and overgrown, so proceed with caution if you are planning on camping there (definitely only attempt it at night if you have a good headlamp). Have fun!
Visited on Mar 15, 2013

by erin_said on Mar 26, 2013
chris
I've been to Pfeiffer 3 times now and every time I see something new. 3 years ago I camped here with a few friends on a last-second, poorly planned trip that turned out to be pretty great. The campsite was nice (although we forgot matches to light the fire).

The next time I went backpacking to Sykes hot springs, which I highly recommend for anyone looking to get away from the crowds. The pine ridge trail is very scenic (9-10 miles to the campsite) and there are some great waterfalls along the way.

Last week I went again and hiked to Pfeiffer Fall (part of the train has been closed since fires in 2008), and valley view. The trails were pretty short and I wish I had more time for a longer hike, but it was still nice to get out on the trails and to see the HUGE redwood trees.

Visited on Nov 12, 2010

by chris on Nov 19, 2010
Tomtom33
Great hike, very quite in my experience. Beautiful
Visited on Oct 16, 2010

by Tomtom33 on Sep 07, 2012
Emsboy
This trail has a lot of up and downs, but over all is one of my most favorite trips. Water is easy to come by at every place we setup camp. I suggest starting early when it's still cool and stay out of the sun.
Visited on Sep 30, 2010

by Emsboy on May 19, 2012
RedTailTrails
Went to Sykes Hot Springs via Pine Ridge trail. Get an early start to beat the heat in summer.
Visited on Aug 16, 2010

by RedTailTrails on Mar 15, 2011
Touchstone
One of my favorites. Beautiful scenery and great hiking possibilities.
Visited on Aug 13, 2010

by Touchstone on Dec 27, 2011

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What people are saying...

Big Sur, Backpacking, Los Padres National Forest, Sykes Hotsprings, Terrace Creek Camp, camping, Big Sure, Big Sur River, Sykes, waterfall, Pine Ridge Trail, redwoods, Coast, hot springs, Sykes Hot Springs, forest, coastal, Ventana Wilderness, Hiking, Sykes Camp

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