Xerox Mountaineering & Backpacking Club


BRIEF: A day hike to Serrano Valley in Pt Mugu State Park (Santa Monica Mountains). Moderate- strenuous, 11 miles round trip loop hike with 2100’ gain and loss.

WHEN: Saturday 17 Apr 1993. Leave trailhead 9:30AM; Return to trailhead before 5:00PM, includes a lunch break. We’ll drive to Dave Lake’s house and have a BBQ dinner at the poolside.

HighLights: The rainy season did wonders to the park. Creeks and streams are flowing everywhere. Luxuriant vegetation and abundance of greenery. Flowers are not blooming yet but they may well be by April/17. This looks like Oregon and not Southern California.


Trail Description: Walk through Sycamore campground keeping to the east side, following the well defined Big Sycamore Canyon Trail as it gently ascends the broad floor of the valley. About 25 minutes after the start of the hike you’ll come to the Serrano Cyn trail. Take the right fork and begin a steady climb on a foot trail. 40 minutes after after Entering Serrano Cyn you will have gradually gained 300 feet. After crossing a side stream by going down some rock steps, you suddenly climb a chapparel hillside. The trail makes a sharp turn to the right. Make the turn to the right, going through an old fence line to a grassy ridge. Turn left and go north up the ridge through a large grassy area. An old metal building and metal tank on the hillside can be used as guides. You will see a Laurel Sumac on top of the ridge - head for it. To the east is a ranch. The road coming down the slope to the east is Serrano Rd. Head for this road by continuing north on the ridge, then turn left. Follow this road for nearly a mile as it works its way northwest, losing some altitude as it drops down for a side stream below a prominent rock waterfall, then climbing to the ridge dividing Serrano Cyn and Big Sycamore Cyn. There is a road junction at the ridge. Turn right and follow Old Boney Road northeast for about 10 minutes, then take a side road on the left that drops steeply down to Sycamore Cyn, losing 700 feet in little over one mile. We’ll take the Big Sycamore Cyn Trail back to the trailhead.

Topo Map: Need both: Pt Mugu topo, Triunfo pass topo

Reference: Milt McAuley, Hiking Trails of the Santa Monica Mountains, fifth edition, hike #6, page 65. The last leg of the trip was deleted namely once we hit Big Sycamore Cyn we do NOT proceed to Wood Cyn but straight back to traihead.

BRING: 2 quarts of water per person, lunch, hat, sun screen, sunglasses, sweater and 10 essentials. Bug repellant. (Aqua shoes and extra socks and towels are needed if you don’t want to get your feet wet). Leader will have first aid kit including snake bite kit.

WARNINGS: Beware of Rattle Snakes. Beware of Poison Oak. At least a dozen stream crossings. There are mosquittos and flys. Be aware of ticks. I recommend long pants.

DRIVING DETAILS: From the South Bay take PCH and drive 20 miles west of Malibu. Look for Sycamore Cyn campground and enter via the gate. Parking fee is 6$ and there will be a ranger at the entrance. Allow 1:00 - 1:15 hours driving time from the South Bay.


LEADERS: Dave Lake, work 310-333-6958 home 818-708-7632

Bruce Corning work 310-333-3568 home 310 - 325-8735

LEADERS APPROVAL: This is not for first time hikers or people with poor conditioning. Prior approval of the leaders is required.

POOLSIDE BBQ: Be at Dave Lake’s house before 6:00PM. Address: 6255 Shirley Ave, Reseda Ca 91335. From the 101 Frwy take TAMPA exit north. Go 1/2 a mile and pass the railroad track, left on Calvert St. If you hit Victory you went too far north. Make a right turn on the 4th block which is Shirley.

I’ll provide the meat. People will bring other items for a potluck. Please let me know if you are coming so I can coordinate dishes.

Miscellany: You can come to the hike only, pot luck only or both (and of course for non). RSVP!!!!