HMB: Devil’s Slide Coastal Trail-Pedro Point Headlands-Poplar Beach

Thursday, July 2, 2015

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Michael and I decided to beat the hot inland temperatures by taking a 2 day hike and bike excursion to the coastal town of Half Moon Bay.

Day 1-hike along Devil’s Slide Coastal Trail followed by a drive out to Pillar Point Harbor and a stop at Poplar Beach. This out and back hike travels north from the South Trailhead of Devil’s Slide Coastal Trail to Pedro Point Headlands along South Ridge Trail.

Devil’s Slide Trail is a 1.3-mile multi-use trail, converted from a former segment of Highway 1, that gives hikers, runners, bicyclists and equestrians access the rocky heights of Devil’s Slide above the Pacific Ocean. At provided overlooks, trail users may rest on benches and gaze through observation scopes and take in the view of the rocky coastal waters below. Interpretive signs are placed at key points along the trail and describe the history, geography and the marine and avian communities that live and migrate here.

The trail is paved, with separate lanes for hikers and directional bike traffic. Many convenient amenities are provided as well, such as pet waste stations, bike racks, drinking fountains and restrooms. Devil’s Slide Trail is a segment of the California Coastal Trail, a trail that, when finished, will extend 1,200 miles from Oregon to Mexico, connecting travelers to California’s varied oceanside landscapes. (

Begin this hike at the south end parking lot of Devil’s Slide Coastal Trail.

Devil’s Slide Coastal Trail to the Southern Overlook Area.

Enjoy the gorgeous Devil’s Slide Coastal views!

Devil’s Slide Coastal Trail from the Southern Overlook Area to the Mid Overlook Area. Take in the beautiful coastal views!

Devil’s Slide Coastal Trail-9% climb to the Northern Overlook Area and continue to the north end parking lot.

Exit Devil’s Slide Coastal Trail to the paved walkway along Hwy 1 to Pedro Point Headlands trailhead.

Located in Pacifica, the Pedro Point Headlands are the western terminus of Montara Mountain, a four-mile-long ridge that ends at Pedro Point. Pedro Point itself is a spectacular, photogenic rock jutting into the ocean, its strata upended. The near vertical cliffs and jagged knife-like edge are beloved by seabirds. The headlands above it host diverse plant communities of coastal scrub, reedgrass and Monterey Pine woodlands. (

Follow the packed dirt trail uphill to the South Ridge Trail junction.

S Ridge Trail continues uphill for a moderate climb towards the Monterey Pine woodlands.

Enjoy the stunning views of Pacifica and San Pedro Mountain!

S Ridge Trail continues through the Monterey Pines to a high point at the open flat ridgeline. Shadow is waning a bit, so we chose this make this our turnaround point. * Option-stay on S Ridge Trail and Bluff Trail to Pedro Point Overlook.

Enjoy the phenomenal views!

Turn around and retrace steps to the south end parking lot of Devil’s Slide Coastal Trail.

Enjoy the views of Pedro Point and Egg Rock!

Admire the coastal views!

Drive south on Hwy 1 for a brief stop at Pillar Point Harbor.

Continue south to Poplar Beach for a short walk along the Coastal Trail. The beach is located at the end of Poplar St in Half Moon Bay.

Devil’s Slide Coast is an 8,900-acre network of publicly accessible lands located between Pacifica and Half Moon Bay. Explore diverse landscapes including dramatic ridgelines, bluffs, beaches, tidepools, historic sites and crucial ocean habitats. Combining dramatic bluffs with ocean surf and mountain ridgelines, Devil’s Slide Coast is a great place to catch a view. Several stunning overlooks are available to hikers, bikers, equestrians, drivers and passengers.(

Plan a day trip and enjoy the spectacular ocean views along Devil’s Slide Coast-you’ll love it!

4.6 miles with 820′ of elevation gain
Time: 2.5 hours with multiple stops
Hike: Easy-moderate
Dog on-leash are allowed on the trail
Hours: The Trail parking lots open at 8 AM. Closing time changes seasonally and is posted.

Amenities: No fee parking lots, restrooms and informational kiosks are available at the north and south points of the trail. Trail visitors are encouraged to take public transit on weekends because parking is limited and fills up quickly.

Weather: Sunny with partial cloud cover and coastal fog. Temps ranged from the mid to high 60’s

View the interactive RGPS route map & profile

Devils Slide 2

Detailed Trail Map

Devils Slide

Devil’s Slide Ride-Free Weekend Shuttle

Print Devil’s Slide Coast Map

Devil's Slide


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