Pinnacles National Park, located east of the Salinas Valley in Central California, protects the western half of an extinct volcano that has moved 200 miles from its original location on the San Andreas Fault, embedded in a portion of the California Pacific Coast Ranges. Some 23 million years ago multiple volcanoes erupted, flowed, and slid to form what would become Pinnacles National Park. What remains is a unique landscape.
Pinnacles National Monument was established in 1908 by U.S. President Theodore Roosevelt and was created from the former Pinnacles National Monument by legislation passed by Congress in late 2012 and signed into law by President Barack Obama on January 10, 2013.
Pinnacles has a lot of interesting terrain -- boulder-covered caves, towering rock spires, massive monoliths and sheer-walled canyons. And Pinnacles National Park has some interesting creatures, too, including California Condors, bats and tarantulas! The park's unusual talus caves house at least thirteen species of bat and park lands are prime habitat for prairie falcons, golden eagles and are a release site for California condors that have been hatched in captivity.
Travelers journey through chaparral, oak woodlands, and canyon bottoms. Hikers enter rare talus caves and emerge to towering rock spires teeming with life. Pinnacles National Park offers a variety of climbing routes that range from easy top ropes to the multi-pitch climbs along Machete Ridge. The majority of routes here involve steep, bolt protected face climbing.
Rob Decker is a photographer and graphic artist with a single passion for our National Parks! Rob is on a journey to explore and photograph each of our national parks and to create WPA-style posters to celebrate the amazing landscapes, vibrant culture and rich history that embody America’s Best Idea!