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Devil’s Slide Trail

When the treacherous stretch of Hwy 1 that runs between Half Moon Bay and Pacifica slid into the ocean, it paved the way for a new cliffside hiking trail. With epic views year round, the Devil’s Slide Trail that runs along the old Hwy 1 is the perfect place for whale watching.

Just over 3.5 miles out-and-back, the wide, paved trail is the perfect length for an evening stroll. The Devil’s Slide Trail sits high above the bluffs and walkers are treated to stunning views and the soothing sound of the waves crashing on the rocks below. The views are best on a clear day, but the trail has a certain element of rugged charm when you are walking through fog that is as thick as pea soup and the wind is howling.

This popular trail can get crowded on the weekends and the parking lots on either side of the trailhead fill up quickly. Luckily, Pacifica offers a free weekend shuttle to make getting to the trail easy.

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The Trailhead

Directly off of Hwy 1, the trailhead (and parking) is available at both the north and the south sides of the Tom Lantos Tunnels.

The Route

This wide out and back paved trail is wide enough for everyone. The trail is marked with lanes to separate walkers and bikers. If walking north to south, extend your walk past the south parking lot and explore the ruins of the old military bunker that towers above the bluff.

Other Details

Trail Safety

Like all outdoor pursuits, hiking can be dangerous. It is up to you to assess your fitness level and education yourself about any potential dangers. While I try to regularly update these hiking guides, you should always research trail conditions before heading out.

Being prepared means arriving at the trailhead with water and some basic provisions. Each and every time I hit the trail I bring a backpack with more water than I think I need, a small first aid kit, and a snack. I also share my itinerary and plans with friends or family and I carry an InReach so I can summon help if needed. If you want to know what I carry in my pack during day hikes check out my blog post about essential gear for day hikers.

Stay safe, enjoy the trail, and soak up the magic of nature!

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