Head to the Highland Avenue trailhead for this classic San Luis Obispo hike.”
— Greg Belgum
Open year round. No parking at the Highland Ave. Trailhead.
This classic hike to the summit of Bishop's Peak will not disappoint!
Family Friendly: The hike is strenuous but doable for active youth. It's right in the middle of town so no long drive necessary.
There are various trailheads to summit Bishop Peak. This trail starts at the Highland Avenue trailhead. The trail begins with a flat section through an oak grove before a short steep climb. Once the trail goes through a gate in a fence, you'll turn left to head south around the mountain. The trail passes through another oak grove where you'll see a popular rock climbing wall on the right.
The trail continues along the south side of the mountain before you arrive at the switchbacks on the south-west face of the mountain. After 8 or 9 switchbacks you'll arrive at a bench near the summit. From the bench you can scramble up a tall rock to the right for views of the city. If you continue to the left the trail is much less maintained with scrambling necessary. This is an out and back so just head back the way you came.
Little known fact: the mountain is commonly referred to as Bishop's Peak but is actually pronounced Bishop Peak. The summit of the mountain has three distinct points that resemble a Bishop Hat.
Flora & Fauna
You will find oak trees and other general California plants.