Chews Ridge Road

Los Padres National Forest, California

Distance1.0mi
Elevation Gain173ft
Trailhead Elevation4,890ft
Top5,052ft
Elevation Min/Max4888/5052ft
Elevation Start/End4890/4890ft

Chews Ridge Road

Chews Ridge Road is a hiking, biking, and horse trail in Monterey County, California. It is within Los Padres National Forest. It is a mile long and begins at 4,890 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is 0.7 miles with a total elevation gain of 173 feet. The Chews Ridge viewpoint is near the trailhead.

Chews Ridge Road Professional Guides

Detailed Trail Descriptions from Our Guidebooks

Day Hikes around Monterey & Carmel (Day Hike Books)
Robert Stone
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"Chews Ridge is a 4-mile-long spine in the Ventana Wilderness. The ridge sits at an average elevation of 3,500 feet, rising up to 5,000 feet at the fire lookout at its eastern tip. The easiest access to the ridge is from Tassajara Road, which crosses the ridge just west of the Chews Ridge Fire Lookout (Hike 81 ). The Hennicksons Ridge Trail follows the rolling ridge northwest between Miller Canyon and Kincannon Canyon. The first two miles of trail are maintained by volunteers, passing through open grassland and pockets of large black oak and grey pines. Along the ridge are views across the western ridges of the Ventana Wilderness and into the Carmel River watershed." Read more
Day Hikes around Big Sur (Day Hike Books)
Robert Stone
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"This trail follows a restricted dirt road to the Chews Ridge Fire Lookout. It is a short and scenic hike with little elevation gain. The abandoned fire lookout sits at an elevation of 5,040 feet and offers 360-degree vistas of the expansive Ventana Wilderness and across the Santa Lucia Range, from Salinas Valley to Monterey Bay. The trail winds through open woodland and chaparral. It is a great location to observe birds, including mountain quail, sparrow, owl, and western tanager." Read more
Day Hikes around Monterey & Carmel (Day Hike Books)
Robert Stone
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"This trail hikes up a restricted dirt road to the Chews Ridge Fire Lookout. It is a short, but scenic, hike with little elevation gain. The abandoned fire lookout sits at an elevation of 5,040 feet and offers 360-degree vistas of the expansive Ventana Wilderness and across the Santa Lucia Range, from Salinas Valley to Monterey Bay. The trail winds through open woodland and chaparral. It is a great location to observe birds, including mountain quail, spar- row, owl, and western tanager.Opposite the trailhead, going northwest, is the Hennicksons Ridge Trail (Hike 82), which follows Chews Ridge." Read more
"Chews Ridge is a 4-mile-long spine in the Ventana Wilderness. The ridge sits at an average elevation of 3,500 feet, rising up to 5,000 feet at the fire lookout at its eastern tip. The easiest access to the ridge is from Tassajara Road, which crosses the ridge just west of the Chews Ridge Fire Lookout (Hike 67). The Hennicksons Ridge Trail follows the rolling ridge northwest between Miller Canyon and Kincannon Canyon. The first two miles of trail are maintained by volunteers, passing through open grassland and pockets of large black oak and grey pines. Along the ridge are views across the western ridges of the Ventana Wilderness and into the Carmel River watershed." Read more

Chews Ridge Road Reviews

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8/25/2007
The bad: Intermittently overgrown with shoulder-high brush for the first half-mile or so until it begins to seriously drop to the creek. Possibly lots of ticks in wet season. Tons of poison oak, some hard to avoid (sections are extremely narrow). Some steep ankle-twisting areas prior to the last descent. Humidity in the deeper forest prevents effective evaporation of perspiration (a bit "sticky"). Trail somewhat indistinct after the described fork (recent (?) falls of deadwood). I turned back at that point. The good: Idyllic redwood-lined creek with pools, waterfalls, and surprisingly strong water flow in the middle of one of a particularly dry summer. Amazing sense of isolation among the forest. Not heavily travelled. Saw snakes, various birds, lizards. Cool ferny stretches near the bottom. The bottom line: Recommended, but with some reservations.
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7/29/2006
We followed this trail hoping to make a loop onto the Gamboa trail and back over Cone Peak. However, the Gamboa trail was extremely overgrown, so we continued along to Cook Spring Camp instead. The camp was pleasant and deserted though not particularly stunning. There are some impressive ocean views, but you may wind up looking out over a sea of fog. Also important to note is that many cars have to stop just past the Vicente Camp trailhead, due to a very rough section of Cone Peak Road. From this point it is almost 3 miles to the trailhead, and the road can get very hot for walking.
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Trail Information

Los Padres National Forest
Nearby City
Los Padres National Forest
Parks
Dog-friendly
Accessibility
Los Padres National Forest
Local Contacts
USGS: Chews Ridge
Local Maps

Activity Feed

Dec 2018