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Three Mile Beach

Wilder Ranch State Park

San Francisco Peninsula + Santa Cruz, California

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Three Mile Beach

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  • Trail to Three Mile Beach.- Three Mile Beach
  • Three Mile Beach.- Three Mile Beach
  • Three Mile Beach.- Three Mile Beach
  • The Ohlone Trail runs along the bluffs over Three Mile Beach.- Three Mile Beach
  • Looking north along the Wilder Ranch State Park coastline near Three Mile Beach.- Three Mile Beach
  • Three Mile Beach.- Three Mile Beach
  • Shoreline haystacks off of Three Mile Beach.- Three Mile Beach
  • Brown pelicans soaring off of Three Mile Beach.- Three Mile Beach
  • Brown pelicans soaring above Three Mile Beach.- Three Mile Beach
Overview + Weather
Pros: 
Secluded beach. Access via state park trails.
Cons: 
Often foggy. Poison oak around. No dogs allowed.
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Alerts: 
Strong currents
Region:
San Francisco Peninsula + Santa Cruz, CA
Congestion: 
Low
Location type: 
Sandy beach
Rocky shore
Parking Pass: 
Not Required
Current Local Weather:
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Adventure Description

Adventure Description

Contributor

Located three miles west of Santa Cruz in Wilder Ranch State Park lies this aptly named secluded sandy beach. It’s a bit of a trek to get there, and it is typically accessed by hiking along the Ohlone Bluffs Trail. Because of the hike in, this beach remains one of the more secluded in the area, and it’s known for being clothing-optional. Currents are known to be very strong along these beaches, so use caution when venturing out into the water.

To ge there, park at the Three Mile Beach Trailhead near 3050 Coast Road off Highway 1, but because of the limited number of spaces, visitors can also get there by parking near Four Mile Beach and hiking in from the north. Regardless of the direction you come into Three Mile Beach, you'll want to keep an eye out for a small steep footpath off the Ohlone Bluffs trail that heads down to the beach. Beward of poison oak as it grows rampat along California's central coast.

Dolphins and migrating whales are often spotted offshore, and exploring the main part of Wilder Ranch is a worthy day trip for those interested in some local history. The park was formerly a dairy ranch throughout the 1800s, and many of the original structures have been preserved. Wilder Ranch also offers excellent mountain biking opportunities.

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Location + Directions

Nearby Camping + Lodging

(20 within a 30 mile radius)

Nearby Adventures

(117 within a 30 mile radius)

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