By Gabby Mahmood, 

On average, San Luis Obispo sees more than 300 days of sunshine each year. Combine that with green hills, countless miles of hiking and biking trails, great bouldering and you’ll start to notice the over-abundance of tanned legs, full bike racks and drying wetsuits throughout town. There are 30 miles of trails in SLO City limits alone. Pair that with 15,000 acres of protected open space not counting the 11 California State Parks and Los Padres National Forest and you’ve got one massive playground.

Avila Ridge Trail, San Luis Obispo California

Avila Ridge Trail, San Luis Obispo California

This is the second of four posts in a series of ideas of how to spend your summer in San Luis Obispo.


As SLO is notorious for its countless hiking trails, summer is the perfect time to put your adventurous-self to the test. Try the Avila Ridge Trail, located between Avila and Pismo Beach, to get an incredible view of the Pacific Ocean. Bonus: there’s a swing somewhere along the trail, see if you can find it! The trail will lead you down to Pirate’s Cove, a secluded little beach with an awesome-looking cave that makes for a cool view, and the perfect photo-op.

Biking: Mountain & Road

Mountain Biking San Luis Obispo California

Mountain Biking on Cerro San Luis in San Luis Obispo California

From hundreds of miles of secluded country roads to trails that lead to ocean views, cycling in San Luis Obispo has got your options. Not ready for a mountain bike hammerfest, don’t worry, there’s a trail for just about every fitness level. For the mountain bike enthusiasts short on time, try the Cerro San Luis right in the middle of town. If you’re looking for more climbing and descending options head out to Lopez Lake, or check out Cuesta Ridge for picturesque views of SLO’s signature rolling hills. Prefer to stay on the road? Try the Madonna Inn Bike path or the Bob Jones City to Sea Trail or start in San Luis Obispo and head out to the cool breeze of Pismo Beach or Highway 1 and Morro Bay.

We didn't have legal access to any images of people actually climbing so we decided to bring back some memories.

We didn’t have legal access to any images of people actually climbing so we decided to bring back some memories.

Rock climbing: Indoor & Outdoor

If dangling from the side of a large rock is your thing, we’ve got you covered too. For the indoor rock climbers, Crux Climbing Center with 1,000 climbing routes for every skill level. If you prefer the great outdoors, we suggest Cabrillo Peak, just south of Morro Bay or Rock Front Ranch in Nipomo.

Gabby Mahmood is a business administration student at Cal Poly and former SLO Chamber communications intern who went above and beyond while researching for the Summer in SLO blog post series.