Take in the views of SLO CAL and get your steps in while doing so! Nearly every SLO CAL destination is home to its own unique terrain and array of hiking trails. We've compiled this list of various trails to get you started. Where will you go from here?


Easy SLO CAL Hikes

Montaña de Oro Bluff Trail:

Distance: 4.6 miles
Elevation Gain: 370 feet
Trail Type: Loop
Location: Los Osos, CA

Description: This Montana de Oro trail is perfect for hikers of all skill levels. Wildflowers and ocean views make this hike one to bring your camera on. This trail is perfect for walking, running or even just a family outing. Unfortunately, no dogs are allowed on the trail, so the furry family members will have to sit this one out.

Sycamore Crest Trail:

Distance: 1.5 miles
Elevation Gain: 498 feet
Trail Type: Out & Back
Location: Avila Beach, CA (off of Avila Beach Dr.)

Description: This short trail located in Avila Beach offers scenic views of the ocean and is a great place to watch the sunset, any day of the year. It is steep at parts, but the views at the top make it all worth it. Sit back on the swing, breathe in the fresh ocean air and don’t forget your furry friend – all leashed dogs are welcome.


Guiton Trail Oceano Lagoon:

Distance: 1.3 miles
Elevation Gain: 13 feet
Trail Type: Loop
Location: Pismo State Beach, Oceano, CA

Description: The easiest of the three, this trail is a small loop around the Oceano Lagoon at Pismo State Beach. Perfect for a walk with the kids or even some serene alone time.





Medium Difficulty Hikes in SLO CAL


Serenity Swing:

Distance: 3.5 miles
Elevation Gain: 725 feet
Trail Type: Out & Back
Location: Peterson Ranch, San Luis Obispo, CA

Description: This trail is one of three trails at Peterson Ranch and is accessible year-round. Located in San Luis Obispo, it is known for the wildlife, the views, and the shady tree at the summit with two swings. So, sit back and swing, but be sure to grab a photo of the view before heading back down.


Froom Canyon – Irish Hills Preserve:

Distance: 4.1 miles
Elevation Gain: 751 feet
Trail Type: Loop
Location: Irish Hills Open Space, San Luis Obispo, CA

Description: One of eight trails located in the Irish Hills Open Space of San Luis Obispo, this one is on the more difficult side. Dogs are allowed on this trail, but don’t forget a leash. Parts of the trail were previously mining roads, therefore a bit rocky and more difficult to navigate. It has several options to make it longer or more challenging, but don’t miss out on the waterfall.

Lone Oak & Peekaboo Loop Tail – Pismo Preserve:

Distance: 5.5 miles
Elevation Gain: 954 feet
Trail Type: Loop
Location: Pismo Preserve, Pismo Beach, CA

Description: Newly opened, the Pismo Preserve offers both stunning coastal views and oak dotted trails for a truly scenic experience. This trail has a gradual incline with gorgeous views of the Pacific. The Pismo Preserve is open from 6 AM-7 PM so early mornings & evening sunset hikes are both doable. 



Hard Hikes in SLO CAL


Reservoir Canyon Trail:

Distance: 5.35 miles
Elevation Gain: 1,350 feet
Trail Type: Out & Back
Location: Reservoir Canyon National Reserve, San Luis Obispo, CA

Description: From the summit, the peaks and valleys of the Central Coast can be seen. However, this trail is not for the ordinary hiker. In order to reach the summit, hikers must climb 1,350 feet, with 800 of them being in the last mile. Many side trails can lead the adventurous to a waterfall or an old bell tower. Either way, all the triumphant are rewarded with surreal panoramic views.


Grey Pine Trail:

Distance: 4.4 miles
Elevation Gain: 1,292 feet
Trail Type: Out & Back
Location: Santa Margarita Lake Reserve, Santa Margarita, CA

Description: This trail leads hikers through the forest to Santa Margarita Lake. Along the way, there are beautiful greenery, a meadow, and lake views. It costs $10 to park and there is a $3 fee for dogs. The fee is for the whole day, and there are many trails to and around the lake.