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Category Archives: Half Moon Bay Trails

Devil’s Slide Trail Isn’t So Scary Anymore

September 29, 2014 by Mill Rose Inn

Devil's Slide TrailTake in the beauty of the great outdoors at the new and improved Devil’s Slide Trail located between the cities of Pacifica and Montara.  About 20 minutes south of San Francisco, this 1.3 mile trail opened this past March with freshly paved walking and biking trails safe for pedestrians and bikers.  Visitors to the area can overlook picturesque views of the Pacific Ocean while either riding or walking and without the worry of cars flying by.  The Devil’s Slide Trail is a segment of the California Coast Trail that will eventually allow visitors to enjoy 11 miles of the coast from Mori Point to Pillar Point.

Highway 1 was transformed from a highway to a trail because of how impractical and dangerous the road was for drivers.  The road was often the site of car accidents, landslides and was sometimes closed.  Devil’s Slide was originally named for its narrow and twisting road that tightly hugged the mountainside.  The drive was a nightmare for travelers and commuters and was extremely unsafe.  It took about one year to complete the 2 million dollar construction which included paving the area and including parking, public restrooms at both ends and three overlooks.  The trail includes 12 benches great for enjoying a picnic lunch or for taking in the sights of the marine life below like dolphins and seals.  Panels can be found along the way to educate visitors on the history of the area.  The panels also include information on the plant and animal life that flourish in the area.  The Devil’s Slide Trail is perfect for biking and walking.  There are two six foot bike lanes and a 12 foot pedestrian lane with three foot concrete barriers along the side.  The trail will also be wheelchair accessible with the exception of one part in the middle where assistance might be needed because of the steep part of the road.

The only downside to the trail is the lack of pedestrian routes to the trailhead since it was made out of Highway 1.  A narrow shoulderless stretch of highway gives access to the trail.  On weekends, a free shuttle runs once an hour from Pacifica State Beach or the Sam Trans Route 17 bus stops at the trailhead.  The parking lot opens at 8:00am and the park closes at different times depending on the season.  Dogs are allowed on the trails if they are kept on a leash.  It is also not uncommon to see horses on the trails since the trail is also shared with equestrians.

After an exhausting day spent exploring the trail, find the perfect room to unwind at Mill Rose Inn.  Mill Rose Inn is a Four Diamond AAA award-winning bed and breakfast in Half Moon Bay.  The Inn is the ultimate in pampering as its spacious rooms, elegant décor and lush gardens set the tone for a most relaxing retreat.  A gourmet breakfast of fresh juices, French pastries, omelets and homemade breads is served each morning.  Even though the B&B is tucked away, it is still within walking distance of many of Half Moon Bay’s galleries and restaurants.

Photo courtesy of Daniel Clanon

Explore the Half Moon Bay Coastal Trail

September 17, 2014 by Mill Rose Inn

Half Moon Bay Coastal TrailBy foot or by bike, spend the day exploring the Half Moon Bay Coastal Trail.  Family members of all ages will enjoy the ease of the flat paths and the amazing views at the stops along the way.  The trail is 11.5 miles long and can easily take a half of a day to complete.  The trail opens up to bluff side benches for watching the ocean waves and has access to great State beaches for quick dips in the sea.  Experience a morning or afternoon on the trail and uncover all the beauty of Half Moon Bay.

The summer months are the busiest times to visit the trail as the paths can become crowded.  The spring, fall and winter seasons seem to have fewer visitors and the weather is more likely to cooperate. Any season and any time of year, the Half Moon Bay Coastal trail is the ideal day trip when visiting the area.  Layered clothing is recommended as the ocean breeze can create cooler conditions depending on the time of day.  Half of the paths along the trail are paved with the other half consisting of dirt.  Despite the terrain, they still create a great ride for biking, running or walking.  The paths are dog friendly and even horses can be seen on the dirt paths.  The trails can become clouded with fog on many days but when the fog clears, the paths are perfect for meandering and taking in all the views.

There are spots to have lunch or drinks along the way, or bring a picnic to enjoy on the beach.  The end of one path will lead you to a ride through the beautifully manicured Ritz Carlton property and the trail runs adjacent to the golf course.  For stunning views of the ocean coast and an easy walk, the Half Moon Bay Coastal trail creates quite the experience.  There are many places to begin the journey.  The entry at the end of Poplar Avenue has access to the beach where dogs are allowed.  When walking the trails versus biking, begin at Francis Beach.  If biking first, begin at Magellan Road.  Other points of interest along the trail are the Half Moon Bay Brewing Company, Moss Beach Park and Half Moon Bay Harbor where fresh fish and crab can be purchased right from the boats depending on time of year.

Half Moon Bay, California is home to the award-winning B&B by the sea, The Mill Rose Inn.  The Inn is not only close to shops and dining, it is situated right on the ocean.  This beautiful and elegant bed and breakfast with its antiques and lavish décor, will have you feeling relaxed and ready to unwind.  There are six guest suites complete with private entrance and filled with items like a stocked refrigerator and Japanese dressing robes.  A gourmet breakfast is served each morning with items including French pastries, homemade breads, omelets, fruit and fresh squeezed juices.  After breakfast, take a stroll in the lush gardens filled with hundreds of roses and tropical flowers.  When booking your stay, there is a 20% discount for same-day reservations.  Room availability and nightly rate can be found on their website.

Photo courtesy of Tracy Vierra

Your Guide to Hiking Montara Mountain

June 20, 2014 by Mill Rose Inn

Montara MountainGuests staying at our Half Moon Bay bed and breakfast, Mill Rose Inn, have access to a bounty of natural beauty. Not only is our inn surrounded by rich and colorful gardens, but also the Half Moon Bay area is an ideal place for hiking and exploring. Half Moon Bay trails cover a variety of landscapes along the coastline and ocean views are plentiful. There are several places in the area you can visit to enjoy the outdoors. One in particular is Montara Mountain. This beautiful mountain is a great place to spend your time hiking and enjoying the picturesque California countryside. Here’s a short guide to hiking Montara Mountain!


Montara Mountain forms the northern spur of the Santa Cruz Mountains, a narrow mountain range running the length of the San Francisco Peninsula. The highest point rises to 1,898 feet above sea level! Overlook pristine coastal landscapes from a mountaintop that’s just a short drive from the Mill Rose Inn. If you’re looking for sun along the San Francisco peninsula coastline, the Montara Mountain is the place to head for. The sun often breaks through the clouds, giving you the best view of the area! By the time you hike to the summit you’ll be hiking above the clouds, so don’t let the gloomy weather stop you from seeing the pristine view. Montara Mountain hike at McNee Ranch is a fabulous 7-10 round trip mile walk up to the 1898-foot North Peak summit. Take caution when deciding to hike this mountain. Hikers should be in reasonable shape in order to enjoy the walk and avoid sliding.


To start your adventure up to the summit, choose from any of the awesome trails the area has to offer. With several trails to choose from, there is sure to be one just right for you.


The shortest official trail begins in San Pedro Valley County and promises gorgeous views from the Northern flanks of the mountain towards Pacifica. The narrow 3 ½ mile trail begins inside the boundary of San Pedro Valley County Park, passes through eucalyptus forest and rises high into the hills, revealing impressive views of the surrounding area and endless coastline.


The Farralone Cutoff trail is 4.1 miles to the summit. The path crosses the cultivated fields north of Montara and several others things before the real climb begins. This path is a little longer than the San Pedro Valley Park one. To began your journey turn off Route 1 at 2nd Street and take a left turn onto Farallone Avenue. For a map of the trail, check here.


Graywhale Cove State Beach trail is one of the longest trails to the summit of Montara Mountain. This 4.8-mile path begins at Graywhale Cove State Beach and winds up the side of the massive mountain. The view of the coastline on all the trails named above is breath taking!



When you’re mapping out which Montara Mountain trail to explore, don’t forget to book your stay at a local Half Moon Bay bed and breakfast. Mill Rose Inn has a beautiful selection of rooms and suites to choose from. Many rooms have garden views, claw foot tubs and fireplaces. Plus, your stay includes a delicious full champagne breakfast so you’ll have the fuel to hit the Montara Mountain trails. Find your perfect room and start planning your trip today!

Also, here is  a comprehensive article on Top 50 Long Distance Hiking Trails In The USA you might enjoy.


Photo courtesy Eugene Kim.

Half Moon Bay Trails Adventure Guide

February 26, 2014 by Mill Rose Inn

Half Moon Bay TrailsGuests staying at our Half Moon Bay bed and breakfast, Mill Rose Inn, have access to a bounty of natural beauty.  Not only is our inn surrounded by lush and colorful gardens, but the Half Moon Bay area is an ideal place for hiking and exploring. Half Moon Bay trails cover a variety of landscapes along  the coastline and ocean views are plentiful. There are several places in the area you can visit to enjoy the outdoors.  To help you plan your trip, we’ve put together a short Half Moon Bay trails adventure guide.


One of the most popular Half Moon Bay trails is the Waterfront Coastside Trail. Part of the Half Moon Bay State Park, this trail is around 6 miles roundtrip and is great for both hiking and biking because it is paved. There is also easy access to the beach if you want to walk on the sand for part of your hike. This is a fairly easy hike with picture perfect scenic views of the beach and wooded areas.  There is also a horse trail alongside the Waterfront Coastside Trail. Picnic tables, benches and restrooms are available along the trail. This trail goes along some of the best beaches in the Half Moon Bay State Beach.


Purisma Creek – Whittmore Gulch is one of the longer Half Moon Bay trails measuring about ten and a half miles log.  The hike is moderate and is best for those looking to spend at least half a day hiking. This trail goes through might redwood forests as well as having areas that open up to the ocean.  Banana slugs are something hikers on this trail need to look out for and bringing plenty of water is a must.


For a shorter oceanfront hike, try Mavericks Cliffs Trail.  See one of the most famous surfing locations in the world as you walk this two and a half mile trail. During the Mavericks competition, the trail is crowded by surf enthusiasts looking to take advantage of its stunning views of the waves. This trail along the cliffs is easy and has very little elevation change.  However, if you want, you can continue along the harbor to a rock pier where you may be able to view seals and other marine life.


Blufftop Coastal Park trail is another easy hike.  It will take you about an hour and a half or less to make the loop which measures in at just under three miles.  You can choose to take the paved or dirt path, but be aware that the dirt path is frequented by horseback riders.


In nearby Boulder Creek is Berry Creek Falls. There are three routes to choose from, all measuring ten miles or more. Hikers should allow for four to six hours of hiking roundtrip but when you get to the falls, the trip is well worth it. And if you’re looking for a mountain hike, Montara mountain offers a an elevation gain of almost 2000 feet above the beaches. Hiking Montara mountain from Graywhale Cove State Beach will provide you with a hike of almost five miles.


When you’re mapping out which Half Moon Bay trails to explore, don’t forget to book your stay at a local Half Moon Bay bed and breakfast. Mill Rose Inn has a beautiful selection of rooms and suites to choose from. Many rooms have garden views, claw foot tubs and fireplaces.  And your stay comes complete with a delicious full champagne breakfast so you’ll have the fuel to hit the Half Moon Bay trails. Find your perfect room and start planning your trip today!


Photo courtesy Steve Jurvetson.