Montana de Oro & Los Osos

Montana de Oro & Los Osos


Montana de Oro is a real gem in the California State Park system. Lightly visited, this State Park is six miles southwest of Morro Bay California. Springtime’s explosion of yellow flowers gives the park its name which means “mountain of gold” in Spanish.

Montana de Oro is known for its windswept, rocky cliffs, gorgeous ocean views and secluded beaches. There are plenty of places to hike, ride horses and even use a saucer to slide down the sandy hills onto the beach below. Before the entrance to the park, there are huge stands of eucalyptus trees that were planted to provide railroad ties but it was soon discovered that the wood was too soft to use, the project was abandoned and the trees became part of the scenery that is Montana de Oro.

Spooner’s Cove beach is across from the campground where there’s a little museum and bathroom facilities close by. Get off by yourself on hiking trails or horse trails and its easy to see black tailed deer, streams, cliffs, and find secluded beaches.

Los Osos is south of Morro Bay is basically residential, a bedroom community for San Luis Obispo. Los Osos Valley Road connects it with San Luis while South Bay Boulevard connects Los Osos with Morro Bay. Los Osos is the south entrance to Montana de Oro, while Morro Bay borders it on the north.

The name Los Osos means “The Bears” in Spanish referring to long ago prevalence of Grizzly Bears in the region when Spanish explorers camped in the area and hunted the bears for their meat.

The Elfin Forest Natural Preserve, 90 acres of pygmy oaks, is located in Los Osos at the southeastern shore of Morro Bay. The walk around the forest consists of wooden walkways extending for a mile loop with periodic viewing platforms. Indigenous plants include wild hyacinth and a pink succulent called Dudleya. The ant hungry coast horned lizard also inhabits the elfin forest and can grow up to six inches. Guided walks through the preserve are scheduled for the third Saturday of the month. Call for further information : (805) 528-0392.




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