We woke up bright and early on Thursday morning to try to beat the sun. We did this hike exactly one year ago, only we started in the mid afternoon - NOT a good idea. We left San Luis Obispo at about 5:30am and arrived at the trailhead at about ~8:00am.
A quick snap from the window while driving Nacimiento-Fergusson Road.
As you may/may not know - Highway 1 is still closed from the mudslides/bridge collapse, making this road the ONLY access to this portion of Big Sur. I've been on this road before, but for those who haven't, it's accessible via 101 to Jolon Rd (https://goo.gl/VXG9eK).
More Info for those curious:
-You have to pass through a U . S. Army base to get onto it (thru traffic is open to the public), and once you're driving it, it's pretty windy with lots of blind corners, hairpin turns, and sheer drops. Drive slow and be careful, there was recently a head on collision here and it's way more traffic'd now that Highway 1 is closed.
-Do note that they sometimes use this road for service vehicle traffic, in which case you'll be stuck waiting until their vehicles get through (I've read this happens on Thurs. and Tues. in the late mornings to afternoons, but I'm not sure if the schedule is consistent).
-There are also two walk-in, no reservation car campsites along this road (I've camped at Nacimiento Camp before) that were pretty empty.
Start of the trail. Tons of wildflowers are still in bloom throughout the whole trail.
Overlooking the coast/marine layer. The fog lasted the first mile or so which was great - it's my favorite type of weather to hike in.
Strong flow at the first water source, about 5 minutes past Espinosa camp. From this point it's ~1.5-2 miles to Vicente Flat.
-Water was plentiful and Kirk Creek had good flow.
-The trail condition was overall very good - clear tread and not many parts are overgrown. The first 1/4th mile (right by the highway) is somewhat heavily eroded though.
-Lots of poison oak that protrudes into the trail. Long pants recommended. -No fires permitted at Big Sur as of last week (June 14, 2017). Camp stoves are OK with an online printable permit.
-LOTS OF BUGS! Definitely bring the bug spray.
Our hammock setup/campsite. The weather was overall really great for hammocking - 70s during the day in the shade and 60s at night (I didn't even use a sleeping pad).
We decided to hike back out to the coast for sunset.