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“Hikes not very scenic” 3 of 5 bubbles
Review of Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park

Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park
Ranked #5 of 32 things to do in Big Sur
Certificate of Excellence
Attraction details
Layton, Utah
Level Contributor
526 reviews
135 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 395 helpful votes
“Hikes not very scenic”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 26, 2013

The hikes in Julia Pfeiffer Burns state park are more scenic.

You will pay $10 for day parking at P Big Sur State Park. The Valley View overlook trail is short uphill climb to an overlook of a road. Skip it! Not very scenic! Hiking to the falls may be worth it, if you know ahead of time that it's just a small stream (but a worthwhile drop).

Totally skip the buzzard's roost hike unless you just want some exercise and don't care about the view. Maybe they name it buzzard because you just survey the surrounding area - no ocean views. The destination is a shack with antennas and electric wires and little else to see. I was very disappointed.

The trails are crowded because of all the people camping in the park. There's nothing wrong with the trails; they are just not worth going out of your way to hike due to lack of scenery (in my opinion).

If they would only use all day use and camping fees to improve the Mount Manuel Trail, then it would be worth stopping here. That trail is in disrepair and overgrown.

Visited October 2013
Thank Outdoorpartner
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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587 reviews from our community

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English first
Level Contributor
14 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“Best Beach on the West Coast?”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 14, 2013

Might be the most scenic (if not hard to find) beach on the West Coast of the US. Utterly break taking scenery. It can get busy mid-day, so show up early if you dont want to wait in line for the little parking lot. Instead of stopping in the first 100 years of the beach, walk down a ways and you can have a little piece of this place all to yourself for a little while.

Visited July 2013
1 Thank beattrane
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ringwood, New Jersey
Level Contributor
45 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
“Campers- Put it on your Radar”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 11, 2013

As we have learned on our XC trip many of the best places to camp with tents or RV's are in the state parks. Pfeiffer is one of the best and in the heart of Big Sur. Almost all camp sites are level. No electric hook-up but water and dump site are available. Five minute showers will cost you a buck. If you are looking for a tricky hike try the "Ridge Trail"- a 2.5 mile hike to the wilderness area where miles more await you. One word of caution- the trail is steep, narrow, and long so continuous concentration is a must. It is the only trail where dogs (on leash) are allowed. Doing it with our feisty yellow lab made it even more of a challenge. Hiking sticks recommended- a few hard, dusty turns in dry weather.

Visited October 2013
1 Thank Mitch K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Los Angeles, California
Level Contributor
74 reviews
24 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 49 helpful votes
“Great place to camp”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 10, 2013

Big campsites, clean bathrooms, general store, wifi, showers, laundrey room, This campsite has everything you need. The only thing that was rough, was they charge ten dollars per extra car. The sites hold 8 people for tent camping. The surroundings are incredible, it my third favorite in Big Sir.

Visited October 2013
Thank Seeralon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Long Beach, California
Level Contributor
78 reviews
20 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 48 helpful votes
“Family vacation”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 9, 2013

our family decided to go camping at Pheiffer Big Sur campgrounds which we did about 20 years ago. We had all the kids and grandkids along. We had campsites 158 and 160 which were perfect and lots of room. We used one of them for all the cooking, games playing and sitting around the campfire and the other was used for 1 family to sleep in. The bathroom and showers were right across the road so it was perfect. You had to get a token for $1.00 for a 5 minute shower but it was long enough even for my 9 yr old grandaughter. There are lots of trees and streams to enjoy. They also have different activities from kids ranger groups, a night hike and other things that we didn't do. We hiked to Pheiffer falls and Valley View lookout which was a pretty easy walk as long as you take your time. The lookout at Valley View is very pretty and there is a bench at the top to sit and look out. Some of us walked the whole campground to look at other sites and there are some beautiful ones. There is a restaurant at the lodge but we did not eat there. A bundle of wood cost. $10.00 so keep that in mind. We used 1 to 2 bundles each day and we were there 5 nights, so that can add us. If you have room to bring you own wood that would be good. Each campsite had at least 1 table and benches and 1 firepit. We took a day trip to Pfeiffer state beach which was great and also a day to Montery. The bathrooms could be cleaner but as long as you have flip flops or shower shoes you're fine. They also have 2 big sinks by the bathrooms to do dishes in so that was nice. The only thing to be aware of is the poison Ive as it is everywhere, not so much right in the campsite but all around. We didn't have any issues with it as we showed the grandkids right away what it looked like.
We would definetaly go again. You do need to make reservations through Reserve America and the spots fill up fast so plan ahead.

Visited August 2013
1 Thank packy2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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