“Run this loop for great views and to learn about Chumash culture.
— John McKinney
Lake · River/Creek · Views · Waterfall
This run offers stunning views of Sycamore Canyon and Sycamore Canyon Falls before taking you back along the Satwiwa Loop Trail
to learn more about Chumash culture, making for an all-around enjoyable experience in the Santa Monica Mountains.
Start this run by taking the dirt path out of the east end of the parking area. The path will quickly link up with a wider, dirt road as you continue eastward before the road bends toward the south. After 3/10 of a mile, you'll reach the Satwiwa Native American Indian Culture Center. Continue south for another 3/10 of a mile along Big Sycamore Canyon Rd. Upon reaching this point in the road, you'll have great views of Big Sycamore Canyon below you.
Once you've had your fill of the views here, turn left to follow the Danielson Road (Old Boney Trail)
to the east. The trail will gain elevation briefly before passing the turn-off for the Satwiwa Loop Trail
. Soon after passing that diverging trail, you'll reach a fork in the path. Take the path that leads to the right and you'll run down the hillside for 4/10 of mile to a juncture with the Upper Sycamore Canyon Trail
Continue past the junction for 2/10 of a mile without turning onto the Upper Sycamore Canyon Trail
to reach a a hairpin bend in the trail. Take the Old Cabin Trail Waterfall Spur
that diverges from the bend to reach Sycamore Canyon Falls. Follow the creek along this path and you'll eventually reach the peaceful waterfall.
Once you've enjoyed the waterfall, re-trace your route back up the hillside along the Danielson Road (Old Boney Trail)
until you reach the junction with the Satwiwa Loop Trail
that you passed earlier. Take a right turn to follow the Satwiwa Loop Trail
and follow it until you reach a juncture with the Wendy-Satwiwa Connector. Avoid following this connector trail and turn left to follow the Satwiwa Loop Trail
as it passes by an old cattle pond and a Chumash village exhibit. You'll then arrive at the Satwiwa Culture Center, from which point you can re-trace your route back to the parking area for 3/10 of a mile along the service road.
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
Sycamore, oak, maple, woodwardia, and sword ferns can all be found along Sycamore Canyon.
History & Background
This area was once home to the Chumash tribe, who thrived as hunter-gatherers.