Reserve Facts

Reserve entrance:
Latitude: 36° 04’ 15.1”
Longitude: 121° 35’ 51.0”


Big Sur Coast, Monterey County, 80 km (50 mi.) south of Monterey; 2-hour drive from Santa Cruz campus. 20 miles
south of Big Sur; 4 miles south of Esalen Institute, 5 miles north of Lucia.

Google Map


Three campgrounds; visitor cabin/lab; small lab/library; 21 km (13 mi.) of trails; 16 km (10 mi.) of dirt roads; limited parking; beach access for small boats onto marine reserve.


Resident director, two on-site stewards.


Total area: 3,267 hectares (8,073 acres).
UC-owned lands: 1,855 hectares (4,585 acres); adjacent UC-managed lands: 1,412 hectares (3,488 acres)


Reserve: 0 to 1,067 m (0 to 3,500 ft.)
Top of watershed at Cone Peak: 1,571 m (5,155 ft.)

Average Precipitation

62 cm (25 in.) at coast; 102 cm (40 in.) along ridges; higher on upper peaks

Average Temperatures
Lower elevations (0 to 100 ft.):
January 5.5-15.8ºC (42-60ºF)
August 10.9-20.9ºC (52-70ºF)
Higher elevations (2,000+ ft):
January 6.0-14.1ºC (43-57ºF)
July 18.4-29.4ºC (65-85ºF)


Marine Facts