Hiking whenever and where ever is a passion of mine since there is so many places to see and explore. I had some free time while up in northern California so I decided to go hiking. Searching and finding a spot to go for the day was difficult due to the rain and road closures. I had my sights set on Big Sur but PCH was closed, that will be the next time.
Del Monte Forest was further north and open so I went there. The websites and maps are difficult to read or know where to park in most places. Here is a public map for Del Monte Forest Trails.
The hiking trail was near the 68 West freeway and I was able to spot the small parking lot and pull in. Free parking and easy to pass as well. Walk down the trail and find that it splits up and goes off in several directions for many hiking loops. Check the map I linked above.
The trails will be clearly marked with numbers that match the public maps which makes hiking or jogging nice and easy. I just wondered the trails and went in either direction based on what looked better down the trail. If you live nearby you will have more time to fully explore all the trails. I have a similar trail system near my place called El Moro Canyon Trails and it has the maps of the trailes clearly posted.
The hiking trails are very close to the ocean and everything is covered in this cool tree moss that is soft as a feather. That old saying of “moss only grows on the north side of stuff..” is not true here since all the rocks and trees have moss on all sides.
I was happy to see the low ground cover and ferns growing in the more shaded areas. The ferns mean rich soil and mulch and more chances to find bugs and stuff. I kept my eyes open looking for the smallest hints along the trails while keeping my balance on the muddy trail.
I was able to find this large slug just going along doing what it does best. Just the other hike to Crystal Cove Tide Pools I was able to find a large Sea Hare that probably weighed 2 pounds. I always like finding the little bugs and things that others would miss if they just walked by.
I kept on looking for newts but I was able to find some mushrooms that were brown and looked regular and then I found the large red ones with white spots hidden under a tree. I felt like I was in the Alice and Wonderland movie with the toadstools and then I came across another red capped mushroom. I’m not sure about the names or toxin levels of them, I just took their pictures and left them alone. It was neat to see these three different mushrooms growing while on this hike.
Keeping my feet dry was easy with my Salomon shoes. I always have them with me in case I need a good comfy shoe for street or hiking.
Related Blog: Salomon XA Pro 3D GTX Forces Review
Walking along the muddy trails my feet were nice a dry and not too many times of slipping in the slick clay. Along with my ready to go shoes I had my pack that I use for all my day hikes.
With my Voodoo Tactical SRTP I am able to carry all the needed stuff from first aid and other supplies to food and water along with my Gerber Down Range Tomahawk. This is a compact pack and fits in the foot space of my car and goes with me everywhere.
Related Video: VooDoo Tactical SRTP 1 Year Review
The Del Monte Forest trails and all the trails are a great place to hike and find a “new” place every time if you go down on a new trail but start at the same parking lot. I would suggest this area of trails. I took more pictures that do not make it into the blog but you can find them on my Flickr page.
Written by Brian Holt