Hike the Ewoldsen Trail

Ewoldsen Trail

Distance

4.2 Miles

Elevation Gain

1500 Feet

Activities

Photography, Hiking

Skill

Intermediate

Season

Year Round

Type

Loop

Added by

Lucas Pols

Bathrooms
Family Friendly
Forest
Picnic Area
River
Scenic

Stunning hike through the redwood forest up the mountains of Big Sur to a gorgeous overlook of the Pacific.

The Ewoldsen Trail is one of the more accessible yet challenging hikes in Big Sur. 

It is a beautiful ~4-mile loop through the redwood forest that starts in the Julia Pfeiffer state park parking lot, which is across the street from McCay falls. 

During the first part of the hike, you'll pass picnic tables and walk along a stream until you reach a cross point. One trail is to a small waterfall, Canyon Falls, that isn't too far away (can be worth a visit), and the other takes you straight up the mountain to the actual hike. 

You'll hike for a little more than a half mile before you come to the loop. I would suggest going right at the juncture for two reasons:You'll be in the shade for the uphill portion of the hikeYou'll save the stunning overlook as a reward for getting up the mountain.

The hike is not easy as you'll be gaining ~1500 in altitude in a short distance but it is certainly worth it! 

Pro Tips: If you do not want to pay for parking, you can park along side the road of Mccay Falls and this trailFor photography, I would try and catch this hike near the golden hour. I would start an hour or so before it started and be at the top during golden hour. The light during the day is extremely harsh and can be challenging to use.

Julia Pfeiffer Burns SP Map

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations.

Nearby Lodging

From $176/night

Asilomar Hotel and Conference Grounds

Pacific Grove, California

From $100/night

Walkabout

Santa Cruz, California

From $110/night

Enney Ranch

San Miguel, California

Reviews

Leave a Review

Overall rating: 

A Must-Do Hike!

If you are driving through Big Sur, don't miss this hike! It's very beautiful and the prefect length to give you a good workout, and still have time to explore more of the area on one day.

Great Leg Burner

Good hike-- you can crush it in 2 hours if you are on a good pace-- straight up and straight down though-- great leg burner

Ry Bread

almost 3 years ago

Easy Beautiful Hike

This is a fairly easy loop hike. I'd on average it will take you four hours to do the whole loop. You'll pass through beautiful streams with mini water falls, vast valleys, huge trees and a beautiful coast line view. This trail basically covers it all. There are some steep parts, but if you are in basic good health you'll be fine. At the end of the hike take the tunnel under the highway to the coast line and check out the gorgeous private beach cove. Unfortunately the beach access is closed off, but the view is still breath taking.

Distance

4.2 Miles

Elevation Gain

1500 Feet

Activities

Photography, Hiking

Skill

Intermediate

Season

Year Round

Type

Loop

Added by

Lucas Pols

Nearby Adventures

Adventure

Hike the Waters Ridge Trail

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Take in Iconic McWay Falls

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Explore The Hidden Rock Caves At Partington Cove

Adventure

Hike to Big Sur's Tin House

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