June 13 - June 18: Big Sur to Tassajara Hot Springs

July 4 - July 9: Big Sur to Tassajara Hot Springs

Customized Pack-In's: You select destination and date

Photographs of the Tassajara Fire, Fall 1999.
Regrowth after the cleansing fire.

Welcome, We provide two seven-day pack trips and make available our guides and pack animals for pack-in's in the beautiful Ventana Wilderness Area and the Big Sur backcountry.

Standing on top of the world, overlooking the edge of forever, surrounded by unsurpassed beauty, mountains rise up from the Pacific Ocean and ridges painted green and gold stretch as far as the eye can see. This is Big Sur and the interior of the Santa Lucia Mountain Range, a place where one can explore ancient lands, bask in flower-filled meadows, bathe in crystal streams, and listen to the eagle. It is a place of legends and untamed wilderness where the wind speaks of truth, and rocks reveal the secrets of time.

While hiking from the coast to the interior you will view an unfolding landscape; each bend awakens your senses to the abundance of this paradise on Mother Earth. This land has been the home to the Nason family for many generations. Our tradition as wilderness guides began in the late 1800s when our Grandfather started bringing guests into the Santa Lucia Mountains by horseback. You will find old fashioned hospitality and many colorful tales of the past woven into each adventure.

Our ancestry is also rooted in the Native American people of this region, the Esselen Tribe. The Esselen were the first inhabitants of the Santa Lucia Mountains, a people with a deep reverence for the spirit of this land. Mountain peaks and moss covered canyons await you in this tranquil paradise deep in the mountains. Hike on former Indian trails that lead you into Tassajara Valley and on to virgin forests of pines, oaks, and firs, through open valleys and along rivers with cascading waterfalls and natural hot springs. Our days end at camps which have been used by our ancestors for countless generations, located in secluded places along the way, and are totally surrounded by the beauty and abundance of Mother Earth.

As your guides to this enchanted land, we will share first hand knowledge of the culture of local Native Americans as you visit ancient ceremonial areas, village sites, and pictographs hidden among the sandstone boulders and caves. We will share stories, songs, and drumming around the campfire; we will camp beneath the moon and stars and listen to the stillness of the wilderness.

From our camp kitchen, tasty meals are prepared and served by our skilled outdoor chefs. Trips are scheduled from early Spring through late Fall.

Further Information
Map to Ventana Wilderness Ranch
Registration Form--Download to your printer

Ventana Wilderness Ranch


Esselen Tribe of Monterey County
Western Gate Gallery
Tassajara Zen Mountain

Copyright 2005. All rights reserved. WILDERNESS-SPIRIT EXPEDITIONS, and NATIVEGUIDES.COM, are trademarks of Ventana Wilderness Ranch. All Rights Reserved. Prices and trip schedules subject to change or cancellation without notice.


Deerdancer (35 k)

Singing & drumming around the campfire
(49 k)

Dancing Bear (51 k)


Wildflowers, 1998 (40 k)
Wildflowers, 1999 (36 k)
Wildflowers, 1999 (61 k)
Wildflowers, 1999 (68 k)
Native Dancers (69 k)
1996 Group Photo (75 k)
Ventana Wilderness Ranch (47 k)
Teepee in Pine Valley
(77 k)
Riding the Trails
(77 k)
Trail View in the Ventana Wilderness
(71 k)
Junipero Serra Peak from the Pine Ridge Trail (109 k)
Pine Valley Falls
(58 k)
Horse Waiting in the
Pine Valley Camp
(97 k)
Late Afternoon on the Pine Ridge Trail (80 k)
Roundhouse at Ventana Wilderness Ranch (89 k)
The Ventanas (74 k)
Teepee in Pine Valley Camp (42 k)
Esselen Sunset
(61 k)
Saddles & Duster Drying on the Porch Rail (86 k)
Ember & Red in the Pine Valley Meadow (100 k)
Sunset in the High Mountains (19 k)
More Dinner Preparations
(25 k)
Bill and His Boys Around the Campfire (101 k)
Packtrain Entering Pine Valley (61 k)
Ember in the Meadow (89 k)
More to Come
Meadow in Pine Valley (86 k)

Gary S. Breschini and Trudy Haversat, Webmasters