The Big Sur coast is a national treasure. Mountains rise from the oceanside to heights of over 5,000 feet within a matter of miles creating a rugged seascape that inspires with spectacular beaches, picturesque rock formations, and paradisaical turquoise water on sunny afternoons. The diversity on land is truly remarkable ranging from lush redwood-filled canyons and coastal oak woodlands to grassy meadows and chaparral. Sometimes the contrast in foliage can be found within a few foot proximity. The day after the Stone Ridge climb to Cone Peak, we toured some favorite spots along the coast:
- Nacimiento-Fergusson Road: the only road across the Santa Lucia Range with stupendous views of the coast
- Jade Cove: a rugged and rocky cove where you might find some jade
- Sand Dollar Beach: a spectacular crescent-shaped beach with white sands set below the cliffs of Pacific Valley bluff with numerous rock formations
- Pacific Valley Bluff: One of the best short hikes in all of Big Sur with 360 degree views and great wildflowers in the spring
- McWay Falls at Julia Pfieffer Burns State Park: Perhaps the most photographed subject in all of Big Sur, the iconic McWay Falls is a special spot
- Pfieffer Beach: a rugged beach with patches of purple sands and impressive rock formations near Big Sur.
There remains many spots I have yet to visit along the coast so I look forward to returning to Big Sur in the future. Below are some of my favorite photos from the tour.