Point Lobos State Natural Reserve: Day Hikes
Posted on: Thursday, June 16, 2011 8:14 AM
I knew I was pushing it, but I really wanted to take a hike after work even though it was getting late. It was a picture-perfect day, and I had heard so much about the beauty of Pt. Lobos, that I was determined to go there. By the time I finally got out of the office, swapped my high heels for hiking shoes, I only had an hour to hike the trails. Which to choose? Luckily the first trail to the right--which led to Whalers Cove and Rocky Coal Point--was a quick 25 minute loop. It's flat enough for you to run it, but I chose to walk since it was my first time and I wanted to really appreciate the beauty of the area. I wasn’t disappointed. The trails lead to the cliffs that drop sharply into craggy coves that host otters and sea lions. I was quickly reminded that it's their home and I was just a guest. The park also thoughtfully placed benches all throughout the trails, beckoning me to stop and take in the breathtaking views instead of just moving on. After Whalers Cove, I found a relatively hard to see trail, the Cabin Trail, behind the Whalers Museum that led up to the North Shore Trail. I thought I was onto something secret, but two other people had the inside scoop and found this little haven before me. The hike is a bit steeper, but really no problem for hikers of any age. The pine trees engulfed most of the trail until it opened up majestically to the bay. Steep drops and crashing waves made this stop more dramatic than Rocky Coal Point, and I was glad I found it. Realizing I only had 20 minutes to make it back to the front gate, I followed the paved road instead of the coastal trails back, and made it with 5 minutes to spare. It was a perfect hike for after work, where I could forget my office stresses and be reminded of the magnificent natural beauty just a few miles away.