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Santa Paula Canyon Trail

Intermediate/Difficult
 4.3 (6)

A sturdy 3.6-mile run up to Big Cone Camp or a total 7.8-mile run to Bluff Camp.


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Map Key

7.8

Miles

12.6

KM

81%

Runnable

4,604' 1,403 m

High

959' 292 m

Low

3,768' 1,149 m

Up

123' 38 m

Down

9%

Avg Grade (5°)

42%

Max Grade (23°)

Dogs Unknown

Features River/Creek

Check local fire restrictions. Recent fires (July 2017) may have affected access to this trail.

Runner Notes

At times the trail can be difficult to follow. Steep drop-offs and high cliffs may make this a more challenging run on crowded days.

Description

The trail was washed out during a flood in 2005; as a result, at times, the trail can be difficult to follow. There are also steep drop-offs and high cliffs. Weekday use is recommended since this trail is often overcrowded on the weekends as it is one of the most popular trails in Ventura County. Trash and graffiti are not uncommon.

Begin this run by entering St. Thomas Aquinas College; stay on the pavement and follow the main road east then north. At the north end of campus, turn right at a fork and go through a gate. The road continues past Ferndale Ranch and oil pumps, then continues as a dirt trail. At about 1.5 miles, the trail crosses the Santa Paula Creek joining an old dirt road.

At about 2.5 miles, the trail crosses the creek again and begins to climb up a moderately steep slope to 3.4 miles. The trail levels off briefly before descending to Big Cone Camp. Santa Paula Canyon Trail continues from Big Cone Camp down a slope with some switchbacks. Turn right at the intersection to stay on the trail. From this point on, the trail is even more washed out than below and can be very difficult to follow. Use caution when continuing this direction.

People often connect this run with Last Chance Trail by turning left at the intersection, to explore The Punchbowl and Cross Camp.

Thanks to John McKinney, The Trailmaster, for sharing this trail description. To learn more about trails in California, check out his guides at The Trailmaster Store.

Flora & Fauna

The lower part of the trail passes through sycamore and alder stands. Big Cone Camp is located in a grove of big cone Douglas Fir.

Contacts

Shared By:

John McKinney

Trail Ratings

  4.3 from 6 votes

#6778

Overall
  4.3 from 6 votes
5 Star
33%
4 Star
67%
3 Star
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2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%
Trail Rankings

#606

in California

#6,778

Overall
26 Views Last Month
1,228 Since Jul 26, 2017
Intermediate/Difficult

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