San Pedro Valley County Park: Montara Mountain

Last Sunday I had planned a hike and I woke up with a cold. Lame. So I pretty much took the week off of hiking and kettlebells and anything that didn’t revolve around working and sleeping. It’s crazy how a little cold can just wipe you out! So yesterday I was drug free (dayquil/nyquil) and decided to stretch my legs. I thought about going somewhere I have been but thought I should explore more. It was beautiful out, 70 in Pacifica so the beaches were packed all along Highway 1. I was tempted but had decided to climb Montara Mountain.

It was so nice out. In fact, I needed a short sleeved tee but hey, I wasn’t dying since there was a bit of a breeze off of the ocean. I honestly felt challenged but mostly because I couldn’t breathe and was blowing my nose every 10 feet. I have to say this trail isn’t as hard as I make it out to be. There are a ton of benches and I actually stopped quite a bit during my hike which is pretty weird for me. I was still a bit sick. I think I was huffing and puffing and a couple of jock guys coming down (as I was going up) started making fun of me saying I would scare away a mountain lion. At least that’s what I got out of it before they switched to korean. Um, really?

Oh state parks, how I hate you sometimes. Anyway, the trail. It actually wasn’t very busy, but I wasn’t alone either. It turned pretty rocky and I was glad I didn’t wear my pace gloves as I would have felt every rock. I’ve been wearing my Montrails on these winter hikes as I’m always unsure of what the ground is going to give me. Like on this hike it was wet and rocky and sandy. After I got to the fire road (photo above) I was losing steam. You can take the fire road I think all the way up to the top but I turned around at about half way. I still needed to backtrack to the car and my nose was starting to bleed. Nice huh? But the views were really awesome.

In fact, on the Montara trail, you got the second view most of the hike, which was so pretty. I debated on taking the loop to extend the trail a bit more and ended up doing that and missing the view. Oh well. I was pretty excited when I saw a turn off and signs for “waterfall this way”. I keep on missing waterfalls on my hike! So off I went, following signs, hearing rushing water, not going off the marked trail… and then I ended up where I parked my car. Waterfall #2, totally missed. Not only am I directionally challenged, I can’t even find large noisy waterfalls. In all honesty, I don’t think it was a large waterfall and I think it’s been too dry for the running water to have been from that feature. I’m going with that, and maybe some day I’ll find an obvious waterfall for a damn photo op.

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About The Author


I'm Shannon and I love to bake, hike, play video games and have fun. I currently live in the Bay Area with my husband and cat.


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