A Guide to California's Big Sur

Along the Highway:
About Locations on California Highway 1

In the Along the Highway section of this Guide, each page includes information in a Location box to help you locate the facilities described on that page. A sample Location box is shown here. This page explains the information in that box.


The Marker information is the most useful way to locate points of interest on Highway 1 for most visitors while in the Big Sur region. Both sides of Highway 1 are marked with "mile markers" at least every mile, and also at every bridge and at some other places. Each marker contains the abbreviated name of the county ("MON" for Monterey and "SLO" for San Luis Obispo) and the number of miles along Highway 1 from the south border of the county. (The mile marker values therefore increase as you drive north and decrease as you drive south.) You can find any point on Highway 1 if you know its nearby mile markers. A photograph of a Highway 1 mile marker appears here.

The sample Location is at mile marker MON 59.8. It is about 0.2 mile south of Highway 1's mile marker 60.00 in Monterey County (and 0.8 mile north of mile marker 59.00). (It is possible that there actually is a "59.8" marker, but you can assume only that the "integer" markers, like 59.00 and 60.00, exist.)

You can view and print a table of marker values for all the Big Sur locations described in this Web site. It will be useful to have in hand as you drive through the Big Sur region.


The Ends information states the point's approximate position in miles and kilometers along Highway 1 from the north end ("N") of the Big Sur region, at the Carmel River Bridge, and from the south end ("S"), at Hearst Castle® in San Simeon.

The sample Location is about 13 miles (20 km) south of the Carmel River Bridge and about 76 miles (123 km) north of Hearst Castle. This information is useful for general trip planning but less useful for finding a point of interest while in Big Sur.

You can view and print a table of ends values for all the Big Sur locations described in this Web site. It will be useful to have in hand as you drive through the Big Sur region.


The Geo information gives the point's geographical latitude north and longitude west in degrees, minutes, and decimal minutes. The map datum used is WGS84. This information will be most useful for visitors with GPS devices or topographical mapping software.

The sample Location is at latitude 36 degrees 22.346 minutes north, longitude 121 degrees 54.161 minutes west.

Those with GPS devices or with National Geographic's TOPO! software may wish to download files containing this Web site's geographical information that can be used with those devices and software:


Some points of interest described in this Guide are some distance away from Highway 1. However, the Location listed in this Guide is on or very close to Highway 1. If the point of interest is not on or adjacent to Highway 1, the Location shown will be at the turnoff from Highway 1 to the point of interest.

Google map

The Google map hyperlink leads to a map on the Google Maps Web site that is centered on the Location. The Google Maps features allow you to zoom in and out, to move from side to side, and to choose from highway map, satellite photo, and terrain map styles.

Aerial coastal photos

The Aerial coastal photos hyperlink leads to an online aerial photograph, centered on or near the Location, on the California Coastal Records Project Web site. These photographs were taken from a helicopter flying off the coast. This hyperlink is not available for Locations in the Big Sur River Valley.

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April 2009

Location (sample)

photo of mile marker 66 on Highway 1 in Monterey County

This is mile marker 66.00 (tilt your head to the right!) on Highway 1 in Monterey County. It is located within Garrapata State Park.

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