Click this Big Sur California campground signage photo to enlarge
and help you find the location of Andrew Molera California State Park Campground.
Andrew Molera CA State Park Campground
Park Description: A relatively undeveloped California State Park in the spectacular Big Sur costal area; the region's largest state park (4,800 acres) much of which is available only to hikers, bicyclists, and equestrians who take advantage of the miles of available trails. Even the campground is hike, bike or horse ride in although only about 1/3 of a mile. The campground is fairly open, there is little shade available, it is really the other features and activities which make this park popular not the campground.
Location: The park is 20 miles south of Carmel on Highway 1; Latitude/Longitude: 36.2833 / -121.8333
Directions: Just watch for the sign on the Pacific Coast Highway 1, the park is about 21 miles south of the Carmel Bridge, a few miles north of Big Sur or 78 miles north of Cambria.
Click to enlarge Andrew Molera walk in primative campground from the Coast Ridge Road photo.
Camping Facilities: A 1/3 mile trail leads to 24 identified sites which are $25 per night. Camping is allowed only at these sites with a maximum of four people per site. Each campsite has its own fire ring and picnic table with closing food box, the sink, flush toilets, and water spigots are shared. The water from the spigots doesn't taste that good you may want to bring bottled drinking water and you should bring your own fire wood or you can purchase it there for $7 per bundle, you won't find much wood to gather.
Activities: The Ventana Wilderness Society has a Discovery Center which includes exhibits on local wildlife (including the California condor) and a bird banding lab, there are sometimes tours of the park explaining the flora and fauna that are unique to the area. Miles of trails for hikers, a waterfall (Highbridge Falls), horseback riders, mountain bikers (TRAIL MAP). There are guided horse tours of the park and all tours go to the beach. Four-wheelers, will find the south end of the Coast Road just across Highway 1 from the entrance to the park leading to the Los Padres National Forest and Ventana Wilderness backcountry. The Big Sur River passes through the park offering wading and swimming. There is fishing in both the ocean and river and surfing in the ocean as well. There is a year round waterfall, reliable surfing and a historic log cabin: Historic Cooper Log Cabin.
Close by Points of Interest: : In addition to the in-park activities for fun and exploration the many offerings of Grarrapata State Park, Point Lobos, Carmel and Monterey are not too far to the north. A great restaurant the Rocky Point Restaurant is just north on the Pacific Coast Highway and so is the historic Point Sur Light Station. Big Sur itself is just a short drive south. The south end of the Coast Road is located across Highway 1 from the entrance to the park; this unpaved road travels inland, bypassing the mouths of Bixby Creek and the Little Sur River, crossing their canyons at higher elevations. A high-clearance vehicle is required, and a 4-wheel drive vehicle recommended.
Pets & Misc. Regulations: Dogs are not allowed whatsoever in Trail Camp, on any trails, or at the beach; leashed dogs are only allowed in the developed areas, which include the main parking lot and roadways to the adjacent historical buildings area Molera Ranch House, Ornithology Lab, and Molera Trail Rides complex. Please contact the park for additional information.
Helpful Hints: The water from the spigots doesn't taste that good you may want to bring bottled drinking water and you should bring your own fire wood or you can purchase it there for $7 per bundle, you won't find much wood to gather. Since this is a walk-in campground you can often find a space here during the busy days when other Big Sur coast campgrounds are full.
Click to enlarge California Pacific coast white sandy beach and blue Pacific Ocean photo.
Park is open for day-hiking on west side of HWY 1; trails on the east side are closed and the seasonal river bridge is now down.
Campground Contact Information:
Andrew Molera SP Hiking Trails
State of California Park and Campground:
Andrew Molera California State Park Trail Camp
Big Sur Station #1
Big Sur, California 93920
Miles from Carmel: 21
Miles from Cambria: 78
NO Reservations, first come first served; Registration is on a first-come, first-served basis.
Recreational Activities: camping, picnicking, hiking, jogging, kite flying, bird watching, fishing, wading and swimming in the river, fishing and surfing in the ocean, guided, horseback tours, guided nature tours, Nature Discovery Center, historical log cabin, beachcombing, bicycling.
Click for larger Trails Map