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CALIFORNIA SPORTS PARADISE
Your portal to outdoor sports in California
CALIFORNIA'S ON-LINE MAGAZINE FOR OUTDOOR SPORTS

DAY HIKING
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MOUNTAIN BIKING
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Northern Sierras
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SURFING
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Central Coast
Southern Coast
SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA COAST'S
BEST DAYHIKES

Gaviota State Park

When driving south on Hwy 101 south of Buelton, you know, home of the split pea, there is a great pass that winds through a scenic canyon studded with oak and craggy rock formations on its way down to the sea. Every time we journeyed south we thought this would be a cool area to explore. We recently discovered this area is part of Gaviota State Park and has some wonderful hiking and vistas of the wooded hills and the great expanse of the Pacific Ocean. Literature available at the park headquarters will explain how the Spanish explorer Gaspar de Portola crossed this pass in 1769 and other interesting historical information.

Your hike will start at Gaviota Beach State Park. From the park entrance follow the road to the trailhead and the parking area on the right. The Beach to Backcountry Trail will lead North along a rocky ridge. The hike becomes interesting at this point because you will start noticing wind carved caves on both sides of the canyon. A little over a mile into the hike you will meet the junction with Overlook Fire Road. If you follow Overlook Fire Road to the right you will come to the end of this trail in about 1/2 mile. There is a nice view next to a radio antenna and a small concrete building. Stay left and you will meet the junction of Overlook Fire Road and Hollister Trail. Another left turn will take you on Hollister Trail with views of the Pacific Ocean and the famous Hollister Ranch. A turn to the right will take you along the Northerly portion of the Overlook Fire Road which has views of Gaviota Pass. There are other trails to junction with and you can cross Hwy 101 on the Overlook Fire Road to hike the other side of the canyon if you wish. All in all you can make this a 10 mile hike with 800 feet elevation gains. Itís an enjoyable hike with stunning views and challenging terrain.

Point Sal State Park

Point Sal State Park is located on the coast North of Vandenberg Airforce Base. The road to the beach at Point Sal is often washed out during a heavy winter. Access at times is limited to biking and hiking. There is a park to the north that can offer access along the bluff trail. From Guadalupe Dunes County Park to Point Sal is approximately six miles. This hike is enjoyable and making your way to Point Sal on a nice day is a hike to remember. The hike along the bluff winds along some beautiful coves with crystal clear pools frequented by seals and an abundance of sea life. The brush along the cliffs hosts the deer, bobcats, coyote, rabbits and numerous bird life. The trails are remote and not well maintained. It is important to trek safely and watch for washed out or sunken portions of the trail. If you make your way to the point try to time your arrival for low tide as this area offers some extraordinary beach and tide pool exploration.

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CALIFORNIA SPORTS PARADISE
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CALIFORNIA'S ON-LINE MAGAZINE FOR OUTDOOR SPORTS


 
 
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