Backpacking – Big Sur Vicente Flats

Jan 31 - Feb 02, 2020


Experience breathtaking sights in a coastal paradise on a backpacking adventure to Vicente Flat in Big Sur! We’ll be hiking along a beginner backpacking trail with picturesque views of the coast that stops alongside a refreshing creek in the forests of Big Sur. From the coast to the forest, find yourself immersed in nature while you camp among the pines and under the stars!

Skill Level: Moderate

Activity Level: Beginner

Trip Highlights

  • The Vicente Flat Trail allows you to see the ocean, forest, and canyons of Big Sur all at once!
  • We’ll be backpacking on a beautiful, 4.7 mile-long (1570ft elevation) to reach our final destination in the backcountry forests of Big Sur.
  • Participants can enjoy an optional second hike during sunset along the oceanic viewpoints. Others are welcome to find some time to relax or enjoy hanging out with the trip leaders and trip-goers.
  • During this trip, we will visit the infamous Sand Dollar Beach, enjoy some food at local eateries, and possibly visit other national monuments before heading back to SLO!
  • The famous Vicente Flats takes you through forests, grassy plains, mountains and canyons. It’s the perfect place for beginner-level backpackers and those who want to see all that Big Sur has to offer.


  • All trip participants must attend a pre-trip meeting.
  • Trip Leaders will communicate about specific required equipment and personal items needed. Warm non-cotton outdoor clothing that can be layered will be required. Some general equipment can be rented from ASI Poly Escapes at a 50% discount with your reservation. Visit the ASI Poly Escapes website to view the rental catalog.
  • Transportation and drivers are provided by ASI Poly Escapes. Trip departure times are final. Please arrive on time at the specified departure time and location. If you cannot depart at the scheduled time, you cannot attend the trip, no exceptions.
  • Meals are included in the cost of the trip except meals at restaurants while traveling to and from the trip destination.
  • Cancellation of the trip and/or changes in the specific details, timing, itinerary, and location of the trip may happen due to factors including but not limited to weather, environmental events, access and regulatory changes, health factors, and registration minimums.
  • Withdrawing from the trip results in a refund only when another participant fills the spot.
  • Registration is required; there is a fee associated with this program.

What's Included

  • tents
  • stoves
  • pots and pans
  • first aid kits
  • 2 breakfasts
  • 2 lunches
  • 1 dinner
  • transportation
  • car snacks
  • water filters
  • bathroom kits
  • trekking poles
  • bear bins for food

What to Bring

  • sleeping bag
  • sleeping pad
  • large backpacking backpack
  • hiking boots
  • trail snacks
  • 2 water bottles
  • comfortable synthetic, thermal, & waterproof layers
  • headlamp
  • toiletries
  • medical insurance card
  • bowl and utensils for meals
  • money for dinner on Friday
Need Rental Equipment?

The Poly Escapes Rental Center at the Cal Poly Recreation Center has the gear you need for your next adventure! Explore our selection online, then visit the Rental Center to equip your trip.

Learn More