Big Sur - Silver Peak Wilderness

cover photo
Nov 27, 2020 - Nov 29, 2020

Hiking around the hills off the California coast around Big Sur.

Took a last-minute drive to the scenic coastal highway 1 in S. Cali on thanksgiving holiday. Found out that wilderness permits are not required in the Big Sur forests, so picked some hikes from a website to make a 2 night outing.

Left from Salmon creek TH on the S. part of the coastal highway, entering the Silver Peaks wilderness. Hiked up & along coastline with great views of ocean. Worried about water but there were just enough creeks scattered around the hills to provide ample hydration. Got a late start on the 1st day so only had 5 hours of daylight to make it to Villa Creek campsite. Campsites had fire rings and tables so the only issue was figuring out how to sleep from 7pm to 7am!

Decided to extend hike the following day by going to Alder creek campground & back in the morning. Some more good views of ocean and mostly in cool tree shade. Continued from Villa Creek uphill to S. Coast Ridge Road which runs along the spine of the hill crest overlooking valley to the east and ocean to the west. Nice views from there & reached 3 Peaks camground by nightfall. Not much to see there but had water & table.

Finished by backtracking on road then down Salmon Creek trail back to car.

Fun facts

Couple who passed me on the 1st day ran into a rattlesnake on trail that tried to bite! Luckily they were OK and I didn't spot any on trail.

DifficultyClass 1
Distance26 miles
Highest Elevation3370 ft
JurisdictionSilver Peaks Wilderness
TrailheadSalmon Creek