Avila Beach has long been one of our favorite spots to go for a quick getaway. We’ll typically hit the Central Coast several times a year, mostly on a whim when we happen to feel like it and when our schedule permits. We like to go during the week if possible when the crowds are a bit thinner. With this being a bit of a weird year (understatement), we haven’t had the opportunity to take any of our getaway trips until this past week.


The nice chill atmosphere of Avila Beach is nice. We don’t plan anything but just rest, relaxation, and hiking around some of the various spots of Avila. The Avila Valley Barn is also a must-see, especially in October when all the fall festivities are in full swing.The Bob Jones Trail


This trip we stayed at the Sycamore Mineral Springs Resort and Spa and hunkered down in one of their one-bedroom suite cottages that was just delightful and very secluded. While we were checking in, they told us about several hiking spots and one of them was The Bob Jones Trail. After all the years of going to Avila, we had never done this trail and decided we would take it in during this visit.


Our cottage was just adjacent to the trail but there is also a parking lot at the trailhead which is very close to the Avila Valley Barn. There is a big sign for it that is hard to miss. The trail itself is not hard at all and is pretty flat for the most part and completely paved. It meanders throughout the canyon next to San Luis Obispo Creek. From the trailhead, it’s approximately 3 miles into Avila Beach and full of beautiful scenery, especially as fall approaches.


The Bob Jones TrailWhile we walked along the trail, we were accompanied by many fellow hikers, cyclists, people on rollerblades as well as an assortment of birds and wildlife. We came to an area with a swing set and slide and Linda promptly took off for the slide and then we had a swing battle to see who could go the highest.


As we approached the Avila Beach Golf Resort, we crossed the iconic bridge just as you enter the town of Avila Beach and headed over to find a breakfast spot.


If you hike the trail in the afternoon, the Sycamore Mineral Springs Resort and Spa opens a gate right off the Bob Jones Trail at 3 pm that leads to a quaint area they call The Secret Garden. You can purchase beer, wine, soft drinks, and some snack items and enjoy music, the gardens as well as a game of Corn Hole if you’re up to it. We did this on our first night and enjoyed it.


On the next trip, it’d be fun to either take our bikes with us or rent a few and hit the trail again. Either way, we decided that The Bob Jones Trail would be a regular part of our trips to Avila Beach from this point forward. You should check it out as you won’t regret it.      



Todd Mitchell