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Hiking San Luis Reservoir Trails

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San Luis Reservoir is a day trip from Fresno. The hiking trails here range from 1.5 to 6.0 miles round trip This includes the hiking trails known as Lone Oak Trail, Basalt Trail, and Path of the Padres. The San Luis Reservoir is a project that includes 3 different water bodies. The hiking trails take you by fishing areas, sailboarding areas, camping areas and much more. If you are hiking the spring is one of the best times of the year to go hiking because the area is typically filled with wildflowers. The wildflowers in the area include poppies, tidytips, larkspur and much more. If you are hiking during the summer you will find that many of the areas are brown and dead. In the summer the temperatures can exceed 100 degrees on the hiking trails. Additionally there is little shade along the hiking trails which can make hiking during the summer in this area very uncomfortable. If you go hiking during the winter the views may be obscured. In the winter there is typically tule fog in the area that makes for tough navigating. Additionally many areas along the hiking trail get muddy during the winter. Depending on your route you can sink up to your knee in mud in some areas of the hiking trail.

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The hiking trail called the Path of the Padres is a popular hiking option. You can pay for a tour and do the hiking tour and also boat tour. Alternatively through swimming and hiking you can do a self guided version of the tour on your own. You can download maps from various websites. The path retraces a section of the trail that the Spanish soldiers and missionaries marched through in 1805 as they were gathering Yokut to work on Mission San Luis Bautista lands. If you decide to do the official tour instead of the self guided tour plan ahead. It is common for the tickets for the guided tours to go very very fast. The self guided route starts at North Rim Drive. You then take the lakeshore trail around the Salt Springs Cove. You continue hiking along Los banos Creek. You can swim or hike around the creek to the sycamore groves. You then start hiking up to the ridgetop overloop. If you choose to hike around the creek you typically do an extra 5 miles of hiking as opposed to if you had just gone hiking and swimming or boating.