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Calif Coast tour, but campgrounds closed.

Old 10-14-20, 08:20 PM
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jpjuggler
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Calif Coast tour, but campgrounds closed.

I'd like to bike the calif. coast. But all the campgrounds seem to be closed due to covid. I'm not a 100 mile a day guy. probably closer to 50 to 60 at least for now. I'm not sure if there are enough motels frequently enough at those distances. any suggestions would be appreciated. thanks
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Old 10-15-20, 09:16 AM
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Originally Posted by jpjuggler View Post
I'd like to bike the calif. coast. But all the campgrounds seem to be closed due to covid. I'm not a 100 mile a day guy. probably closer to 50 to 60 at least for now. I'm not sure if there are enough motels frequently enough at those distances. any suggestions would be appreciated. thanks
Where are you starting and where are you ending? Have you looked into AirBnB and Warm Showers? Have you thought about stealth/wild/free camping?
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Old 10-15-20, 10:29 AM
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OP, when are you thinking about this tour? It won't be too much longer until the winter storms hit. Second worst windy day I've had was near the CA coast -- reminded me of my worst windy day ever, but it was only a quarter as long as the stretch in Wyoming. You might want to wait until spring, and hope things open back up.
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Old 10-15-20, 04:03 PM
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Originally Posted by jpjuggler View Post
I'd like to bike the calif. coast. But all the campgrounds seem to be closed due to covid. I'm not a 100 mile a day guy. probably closer to 50 to 60 at least for now. I'm not sure if there are enough motels frequently enough at those distances. any suggestions would be appreciated. thanks
I suggest you do what I do when I plan a trip.
Go to Google maps, look at distances to larger towns X kms from your start point. Look for hotels, motels, whatever. Call them.
Repeat, and voila, you'll have your answer.

and I'd take the wind warnings seriously. I did the Oregon Cali trip a million years ago (camping) but I do remember the prevailing winds, so when locals here talk of the stronger winds in oct, I sure wouldnt want to be riding against them, or even dealing with wind and rain if thats a possibility , although I have no clue of Californian weather.

you should be able to get a good idea of whats available, its so easy to find this info nowadays.
If you do it, have fun.
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Old 10-15-20, 05:17 PM
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The main problem you will have between SF and LA is from Pfeiffer-Big Sur to San Simeon. There are a few expensive motels between the two, but not much else. It is 70 stunning miles of serious up and down.

If you are starting further north, you should be able to find something every 50 miles, even if some days are shorter or longer than that.

I've written a guide to biking from SF to LA that might be of interest to you regarding that portion of your trip.
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Old 10-15-20, 05:39 PM
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Is everything burned or on fire? Or will you be breathing smoke?
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Old 10-15-20, 06:00 PM
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Not everywhere is on fire, but many choice roads are still closed anyway "because they can". Reminds me of the endless PITA road construction projects, that never seem to get done. I have just about had with this state, and it has nothing to do with fires or earthquakes.
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Old 10-16-20, 06:56 AM
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Originally Posted by pdlamb View Post
OP, when are you thinking about this tour? It won't be too much longer until the winter storms hit. Second worst windy day I've had was near the CA coast -- reminded me of my worst windy day ever, but it was only a quarter as long as the stretch in Wyoming. You might want to wait until spring, and hope things open back up.
I was thinking of maybe January, but maybe that's ill advised...? I was thinking of combining the bike trip with seeing my CA parents,. (i'm on the east coast) but maybe it would be better to just do SF to SD? thinking south is warmer and less rainy/windy. Or even hopping on a plane and just finding a route in the american south where its warmer during january....

Last edited by jpjuggler; 10-16-20 at 07:08 AM.
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Old 10-16-20, 07:00 AM
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Originally Posted by raybo View Post
The main problem you will have between SF and LA is from Pfeiffer-Big Sur to San Simeon. There are a few expensive motels between the two, but not much else. It is 70 stunning miles of serious up and down.



I've written a guide to biking from SF to LA that might be of interest to you regarding that portion of your trip.
Yes, I'm familiar with that stretch. Nepenthe, Djeetens, etc. You make a good point of it being a affordability problem, not to mention just not that many motels. I'll check out your guide. thanks!
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Old 10-16-20, 07:04 AM
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Originally Posted by Leebo View Post
Is everything burned or on fire? Or will you be breathing smoke?
Good point!

Anytime in CA, I will be taking the smoke fire very seriously. besides just wood smoke, when houses and other things burn, there are other particulates in the air from metal, batteries, and who knows what else that I don't want in my lungs.
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Old 10-16-20, 07:10 AM
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Originally Posted by niknak View Post
Where are you starting and where are you ending? Have you looked into AirBnB and Warm Showers? Have you thought about stealth/wild/free camping?
thanks for the info. I had never heard about warm showers before. what a resource. Wild camping... i would be a total novice, and would feel timid but something to consider. My friends kids did it right up in GGNRA near SF. had no problem and didn't get caught.
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Old 10-16-20, 12:08 PM
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Check the CA park rules for camping. It might be like NY State where you can camp most anywhere in a state forest (below 3500 ft) as long as you are 150 ft. away from water or a road. That makes it wild stealth camping, not illegal "stealth" camping.
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Old 10-16-20, 10:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Lemond1985 View Post
Not everywhere is on fire, but many choice roads are still closed anyway "because they can". Reminds me of the endless PITA road construction projects, that never seem to get done. I have just about had with this state, and it has nothing to do with fires or earthquakes.
There is always Florida
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Old 10-17-20, 06:25 PM
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Originally Posted by jpjuggler View Post
Good point!

Anytime in CA, I will be taking the smoke fire very seriously. besides just wood smoke, when houses and other things burn, there are other particulates in the air from metal, batteries, and who knows what else that I don't want in my lungs.
There has been tremendous improvement in the AQI at least in the SacramentoóBay Area region. Iíve been riding for two weeks with zero concern.
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Old 10-17-20, 06:44 PM
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I am a big fan of stealth camping, even in closed parks. Leave no trace, pack it out. The biggest issue with this is water and food. Bring a filter as backup (Sawyer filter is small and light).
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Old 10-17-20, 10:12 PM
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Most of the CA state parks are open south of SFO. The campgrounds require reservations. No hiker biker sites because that is considered group camping.

Here is my list of campgrounds SFO-SAN. If they are marked hiker-biker they also have reg camp sites. Military ones will req a DOD ID. First number is total miles from start. Second number is miles from preceding campground.

PACIFIC COAST ROUTE CAMPGROUNDS, HOSTEL, MILITARILY LODGING

000/000
Colma Bart station

026/026
Half Moon Bay State Beach
Hiker-Biker

048/022
Pigeon Point Light House
Hostel

083/035
New Brighton State Beach
Hiker-Biker

128/045
Navy Lodge Monterey
Military lodging

131/003
Monterey Veterans Memorial Park
Hiker-Biker

133/002
Navy Post Graduate School Monterey
Military-Lodging

136/003
IHG Army Hotel Monterey
Military-Lodging

169/033
Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park
Hiker-Biker

198/025
Kirk Creek Campground
Camping (no water or showers)

203/005
Plaskett Creek Campground
Camping (no showers)

238/035
Hearst San Simeon State Park
Hiker Biker

265/0027
Morro Bay State Park
Hiker-Biker

273/008
El Chorro Regional Park
Camping

275/002
Camp San Louis Obispo
Military-camping military-Lodging

293/018
Pismo State Beach/North Beach Campground
Camping

295/002
Coastal Dunes RV Park
Hiker-Biker

296/001
Oceano Campground
Camping

339/043
Vandenberg AFB
Military-Camping. Military-Lodging

381/042
Refugio State Beach
Hiker-Biker

384/003
EL Capitan State Beach
Hiker-Biker

416/032
Carpinteria State Beach
Hiker-Biker

439/023
McGrath State Beach
Hiker-Biker

448/009
Navy Lodge Port Hueneme
Military-Lodging

454/006
NAS Point Mugu
Military-Lodging. Military-Camping

456/002
Point Mugu State Park
Hiker-Biker

460/004
Leo Carrillo State Park
Hiker-Biker

487/0027
Hi Los Angels Santa Monica Hostel
Hostel

516/0029
Fort MacArthur
Military-Lodging

554/0038
Crystal Cove State Park
Camping

568/014
Doheny State Park
Hiker-Biker

595/027
Pendleton Pacific Views Lodge
Military-Lodging

611/016
San Elijah State Beach
Camping

637/026
SanDiego
Military-Lodging
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Old 10-18-20, 06:27 PM
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Originally Posted by balto charlie View Post
I am a big fan of stealth camping, even in closed parks. Leave no trace, pack it out. The biggest issue with this is water and food. Bring a filter as backup (Sawyer filter is small and light).
Just curious.

If you "stealth camp" in a closed park and you're caught there, can you be charged with trespassing or other charges?

Cheers
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Old 10-18-20, 06:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Miele Man View Post
Just curious.

If you "stealth camp" in a closed park and you're caught there, can you be charged with trespassing or other charges?

Cheers
Ive seen it happen.
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Old 10-19-20, 04:29 AM
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Originally Posted by Miele Man View Post
Just curious.

If you "stealth camp" in a closed park and you're caught there, can you be charged with trespassing or other charges?

Cheers
Iíve read the posted regulations in PA and NJ state parks. The answer is yes. Same if you glide into an open one late and sneak out in the morning without paying, as more than one person on this site has said they like to do.
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Old 10-19-20, 04:42 AM
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
Iíve read the posted regulations in PA and NJ state parks. The answer is yes. Same if you glide into an open one late and sneak out in the morning without paying, as more than one person on this site has said they like to do.
It's amazing how heavily-patrolled a closed NP is. I think they patrol them even more when they are closed.

I think this is absurd, FWIW, since the land is ours not theirs. But that's what will happen if you mess with the feds, they will crush you like a bug every chance they get.
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Old 10-19-20, 06:50 AM
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Originally Posted by Lemond1985 View Post
It's amazing how heavily-patrolled a closed NP is. I think they patrol them even more when they are closed.

I think this is absurd, FWIW, since the land is ours not theirs. But that's what will happen if you mess with the feds, they will crush you like a bug every chance they get.
Visit many closed national parks and count patrols?

And patrolling a closed park is wise so trespassers don't get themselves hurt or killed or trash the place or start forest fires doing stupid stuff like people are prone to do. Did you not hear about the trashing of many parks earlier this year? People leaving behind mountains of trash and crapping all over the place. And it's not "our" land. It's owned by the federal government and held in trust for a multitude of uses, including commercial uses like logging and mining.
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Old 10-19-20, 06:58 AM
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Originally Posted by Miele Man View Post
Just curious.

If you "stealth camp" in a closed park and you're caught there, can you be charged with trespassing or other charges?

Cheers
Happened to a friend, she got a ticket. But she wasn't stealth camping, she had a car, chair, etc
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Old 10-19-20, 07:00 AM
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Originally Posted by Lemond1985 View Post
It's amazing how heavily-patrolled a closed NP is. I think they patrol them even more when they are closed.

I think this is absurd, FWIW, since the land is ours not theirs. But that's what will happen if you mess with the feds, they will crush you like a bug every chance they get.
During Govt shut down the National Parks were empty. Minimal patrolling. Some folks took back roads to get into the parks out west and virtually had them to themselves. Imagine Arches with no tourist!!
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Old 10-19-20, 07:22 AM
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Originally Posted by balto charlie View Post
During Govt shut down the National Parks were empty. Minimal patrolling. Some folks took back roads to get into the parks out west and virtually had them to themselves. Imagine Arches with no tourist!!
Not the greatest advice I've heard all day:


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Old 10-19-20, 08:09 AM
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Originally Posted by Lemond1985 View Post
It's amazing how heavily-patrolled a closed NP is. I think they patrol them even more when they are closed.

I think this is absurd, FWIW, since the land is ours not theirs. But that's what will happen if you mess with the feds, they will crush you like a bug every chance they get.
as a Canadian reading that, Im not sure what to think, that's quite a statement.
Maybe you are joking
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