Trails to Trudge: Big Basin Buzzard’s Roost

I’ve been to Big Basin before, you can check it out here, but this time was different.  For 1, I had company; 2, I knew what I was doing and 3, I knew where to go. This made everything so much easier this time around.  Tyler, Brian and myself (aka “THE WOLFPACK”) were in Northern California for (tall)Brian and Krista’s wedding.  On my return trip, I decided to embark on a mini coastal camping trip, Big Basin was stop number 1…

Buzzard’s Roost Stats:

  • Length: 4 miles; out and back
  • Terrain: well-maintained trail with straightforward trail direction
  • Elevation: 2,150′
  • Payoff: panoramic view of the Big Basin and the redwood forest


“Big Basin was amazing and exactly as it was almost a year ago. We did the Buzzard’s Roost trail which was grueling and steep but the payoff was beyond worth it…” – 6/12/18, 5:39pm, Morro Strand State Park

While Big Basin’s natural terrain looked the same, the popularity of Big Basin in the summertime was a vastly different experience than going in October.  For one, I had to wait in line for my campsite and for another, the campsite I last stayed in was taken.  Despite the crowds, we found our trail to be relatively empty and peaceful.


The trail itself is straightforward and easy to follow. It’s well maintained and you can tell the rangers do a good job of making sure the trail is safe yet still natural.  It’s a pretty strong incline the entire time so make sure you are prepared to make the ascent.

“…When we got to the top, you could see the entirety of the basin and the sea of redwoods all around us.  It felt like we were on a great granite galley in the middle of a redwood seaforest. We toasted Lagunitas and began to relax and bask in the hot sun.  Shortly, we spied a giant bird flying a couple miles away.  It was a California Condor.  I watched the majestic creature effortlessly fly towards us like a small airplane.  My gaze was transfixed but soon Tyler saw two more on the horizon.  The three birds circled the rock we were perched on three times before the first one finally turned and booked it in the direction of the ocean with the other two following in tow.  That’s two endangered species spotted for Sauce and I now (including the desert tortoise in Mojave). We’ve been extremely lucky and fortunate…” – 6/12/18, 5:39pm, Morro Strand State Park


learning to fly

“…Eventually, we made our way down to the parking lot and Sauce and B. Lim got ready to drive back home to Southern California.  I camped the night in Big Basin and it felt exhiliterating to sleep beneath the trees once again.”  – 6/12/18, 5:39pm, Morro Strand State Park

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