One of the more popular trails in Point Lobos State Natural Reserve, the Cypress Grove Trail draws visitors to the shade of the Monterey cypress (Cupressus macrocarpa). Point Lobos is home to one of only two remaining naturally-occurring groves on earth.
The Cypress Grove Trail follows a mile-long loop that circumnavigates the Allan Memorial Grove. The trail traverses around rocky headlands, points, and coves as it provides an intimate look at the trees and the coastline they inhabit. As you make your way around the loop, notice the orange coating adhered to the trunks and limbs. In spite of its color, this is actually a species of green algae called Trentapohlia, and it is harmless to the trees.
The trail leads around the headland as it opens to multiple viewpoints that overlook the vast Pacific. Watch for whales feeding in the nutrient rich waters off of Point Lobos. Continuing past the rock formations of Pinnacle Point and Cypress Cove, the trail wraps back around to the starting point at the Sea Lion Point parking area.
To learn more about the flora and fauna of Point Lobos and the Cypress Grove Trail, stop at the information kiosk located at the trailhead.