Enforcement for Roadside Camping Labor Day Weekend

This is the report of the BSBO (Big Sur Byways Organization) Roadside Camping committee and comes from the agenda packet for the open & public Tuesday mtg

From Marcos Ortega [CA State Parks]

Butch, Sarah and I plan on meeting with all the law enforcement agencies in Big Sur over the holiday weekend. CHP, MOCO SO, DFW Wardens, USFS and State Park Rangers will convene at the MAF conference room at 7pm this Saturday to discuss with us Roadside Camping. Butch will be presenting to the group the data that CABS has compiled and some of the targeted hot spots for all the agencies to evaluate. If there are any specific issues or question that we want presented to the allied agencies, please let me know and I can bring them up. After our discussion, the LE group will break down an operational enforcement plan for the night and head out to deal with illegal camping, fires, litter and any other issues seen from Rio Road, all the way down to the south coast. With the closure of all USFS lands and a holiday weekend, we expect for there to be a spillover effect to which we can report on at the next meeting. I am still working on getting a media piece to advertise this enforcement task force out before the weekend

11 thoughts on “Enforcement for Roadside Camping Labor Day Weekend

  1. Thank you for the heads up on this….here in Carmel Highlands, we often find people camping in turnouts on our roads so if possible, I’d like to share your post on Next Door

  2. So, they’re going to meet tomorrow evening for something that’s likely to start tonight? And they’re still working on getting a media piece to advertise this enforcement task force when in all likelihood the folks who need to know about it are already on the road headed towards Big Sur?

    Am I missing something here, or does this seem a little late?

  3. Excellent strategy, imo. In time for weekend ‘flow’ of people. Traffic, tourism, safety. I look forward to the continuing processes that might become more routine. Other counties can learn from this as well. The human factors are a safe(r) environment for residents, responders, employees and safety for the growing nomad-like ‘flow’. Optimistic.

  4. September 7, 2021, 9am to 11am, Big Sur Byway Organization (BSBO) meeting. Anyone interested is invited!

    Participate via Zoom Meeting Link:


    Or Telephone: 1 669 900 6833, Webinar ID: 991 2385 1599

    The meeting agenda packet containing this report as well as reports from committees working on such things as invasive species, landslide debris, bridge railing replacement among others will also be posted on the BSMAAC webpage (until we get a separate BSBO page set up) by this Friday. You can find it here:

  5. Perhaps a tad late but it sounds like an effective approach, targeted for time period likely to be most impactful. Optimistic, yes! Lots of applause for this organized, law enforcement backed Action!!

  6. Agreed. I’m just happy there is an effort by multiple agencies to enforce the county code that prohibits roadside camping along highway one in Big Sur. It has gotten out of control and will only get worse if this activity keeps getting ignored. Thanks to all involved in the effort and hope it will continue, not just holiday weekends!

  7. Camping on the side of the road is not the problem, the definition of camping and reality of camping is the problem.

    The reality of camping and life in general is like watching a meth addict with multiple tipped over shopping carts rummaging through the debris ranting. They have multiple large vehicles, they don’t pull out, they take everything out of the vehicle, they start a fire, they play loud music, they set up tents, they don’t respect nature, they don’t sleep, they use the road as a toilet and they don’t clean up after themselves, that is not camping or life that is madness and it doesn’t matter if you do it on the side of the road, in a parking lot, at home or in an official campsite, its certifiable madness.

    Everyone that has lived or will ever live on this planet is a Thru Hiker, you can’t take anything with you because you didn’t need it to begin with. We are judged for the cleanliness of the toilet we live on.

  8. Driving up the coast last night around midnight after work from Big Sur there was only one single roadside camper around Garrapata. Normally on a holiday weekend Saturday through would’ve been dozens.

  9. I drove down on Saturday morning around 08:30 and only counted two vehicles pulled over that looked like they’d spent the night there between Rio Road and Andrew Molera.

    It was the quietest drive down there on a Sat morning I’ve had in quite a while (I drive it most Saturdays around that time). It did get busier than an recent weekend by noon-ish, but still seemed quieter than a typical holiday weekend, though I realize that Sunday is likely to be the busier day.

    I did get asked if I knew a way around the forest closure by some folks wanting to hike, and I said No, it’s there for a good reason.

    I did see that the Kirk Creek campground was closed and just south of there, at the Mill Creek Picnic Area (which was also gated closed), the pullout before the gate had a bunch of cars and two camping trailers all parked in it (this was around lunchtime).

    Also, the caution tape blocking the trail head at the Boronda Trail was there first thing in the morning and gone by early afternoon with 4 cars parked at the trail head.

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