Oats Peak Trail

Montaña de Oro State Park, California

Elevation Gain2,707ft
Trailhead Elevation56ft
Elevation Min/Max56/1372ft
Elevation Start/End56/56ft

Oats Peak Trail

Oats Peak Trail is a hiking and horse trail in San Luis Obispo County, California. It is within Montaña de Oro State Park. It is 4.4 miles long and begins at 56 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is 9.0 miles with a total elevation gain of 2,707 feet. The Montana de Oro Visitor Center and Ranger Headquarters information is near the trailhead. Oats Peak (elevation 1,352 feet) can be seen along the trail. There are also trees along the trail. This trail connects with the following: Old Oats Peak Trail, Valencia Peak, Reservoir Flat Trail and Beebe Trail.

Oats Peak Trail Trip Reports

4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars
icon3 Total
4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars
Oats Peak, in contrast to the hike to its sister peak, Valencia, is a much longer but milder climb from sea level (sea cliff level, really) to a 1,373 summit with wonderful views of the beautiful mountains and canyons of Montana De Oro, Morro Bay, San Simeon, and the coastal ranges to the north. The trail winds through thick brush and chaparral along the side of Valencia Peak (1340 ft), ascending most of the way, but so gently that the first 3 miles or so really do feel like the hike is on the easier side of moderate. Soon the inclines become more steeply rolling, until the steepest section, in the last half mile, to the top of Oats Peak. By the time I reached the top that cooling coastal fog had begun to envelop Montana De Oro, and my views became obscured, but I was not unhappy. The mist cooled me after this particular day's hot, sunny trek and, while the photo ops weren't as great as they were on the first part of the trail, it was magical. The hike back to the trailhead is easy, not too terribly hard on the knees, just a little bit fatiguing considering the distance. There are options for taking other routes as you head back towards the ocean and the bluffs if you feel like shaking it up. Mountain bikes and horses also share this trail and they always try to be polite, but be aware of them as you come around curves. There is virtually no shade on the trail and it can be a little oppressive in hotter months because it is tucked back away from the coast--but the ocean provides sweet breezes more often than not, and Montana De Oro is, in general, a chilly place. Friends I encountered along the way included a family of California quail, countless lizards (thankfully no rattlesnakes, which are not uncommon here), hummingbirds, many sparrows, red-tailed hawks, vultures, a peregrine falcon (!!!), milk thistle, golden yarrow, California fushcia, Indian paintbrush, and millions of orange monkeyflowers.
4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars
Great trail! Very well maintained, with great views from the peak. Stop to check for ticks often, and best hiked once the morning fog has cleared, around noon.
5 out of 5 stars5 out of 5 stars5 out of 5 stars5 out of 5 stars5 out of 5 stars
This is an excellent loop trail with spectacular views. Green hills and beautiful scenery. Ocean views are amazing. Start at the Coon's Creek Trailhead. Hike Coon's Creek Trail to 2nd junction which is Oat's Peak. The Oat's Peak trail will head North, winding up steep slopes to finally reach the summit. Continue on the trail as it heads Northwest back towards the ocean. Stay on the trail towards Valencia Peak. Trail winds up North side of Valencia, then take Valencia Peak Trail right, decending back to trails leading back South toward Coon's Creek parking lot. Bring a map of the trail systems. Beautiful hike!

Oats Peak Trail Photos

Trail Information

Montaña de Oro State Park
Nearby City
Montaña de Oro State Park
Skill Level
Birding, Horseback Riding
Additional Use
Views, Wildflowers
Montana de Oro State Park
Local Contacts
USGS Morro Bay South, Montana de Oro State Park map
Local Maps

Trail Log