An easy, mostly level 0.6 mile walk through an open field to northern boundary of Reserve (Ichxenta Point). Reached via a descent of several steps from the Granite Point Trail. A side trail provides access to the Pit’s rocky beach.

Moss Cove

Photo by Mary Conway

The Moss Cove Trail first passes Moss Cove, which is protected by the Escobar Rocks at its mouth. These rocks bear the brunt of the strong ocean swell often coming from the northwest, usually leaving the cove relatively calm. It is a reliable place to see sea otters, In the video below, large waves wash over the rocks.

The trail crosses over the lower of two uplifted and visible marine terraces, remnants of ancient beaches from an earlier geologic age. This meadow shows remnants of a natural prairie habitat that has been mostly overgrown with natural and invasive plants. Look for an incredible field of poppies in the spring. Birds of prey find good hunting here and are often seen perched on fence posts and trees. Uphill is Hudson House, a historic residence of descendants of the A.M. Allan family, currently used as State Parks housing.

The trail ends at Ichxenta Point, overlooking Monastery Beach, which you will pass if approaching Point Lobos from the north. No exit or entry at Monastery Beach. Use main gate only.