XEROX Mountaineering & Backpacking Club

Tequepis Trail, Santa Ynez Mts Hike Saturday, 9 March 1991

Brief: Moderate, 8 mile round trip, 2,320 feet elevation gain.

What: The Tequepis Trail ascends the north slope of the Santa Ynez Mountains through Tequepis Canyon reaching the crest at an elevation of 3,520 feet. Tequepis has been called one of the most scenic and beautiful trails in the Santa Barbara area while also being relatively little used. This hike should offer spectacular views of Lake Cachuma (what's left of it), the Santa Ynez Valley, and the San Rafael wilderness to the north, and an unobstructed view of the Pacific Ocean and Channel Islands to the south. (One reviewer also said that Mount Pinos, highest point in Los Padres, is visible to the east). Most of the trail is well shaded with live coastal oak and sycamore near the bottom, and madrone and tan bark oak near the summit. This will be an "exploratory hike", which means that I haven't pre-hiked it. The route follows a fire road for the first mile and after that should be well marked trail. ("Tequepis" is the Chumash word for seed gatherer).

Where: The Tequepis Trail is in the Los Padres National Forest, and is located approximately 22 miles northwest of Santa Barbara.

When: Saturday March 9, be at the trailhead no later than 10:00 AM.

Who: This is rated as a moderate hike, but there is one short section (1/4 mile) described as steep. The pace will be leisurely so I recommend this 8 mile round trip for just about everyone.

Bring: Lunch, water (1 quart min.), camera, ten essentials. Also, binoculars, if you have them, it's been reported that hundreds of bald eagles make the shores of Lake Cachuma their winter home. Lightweight boots or even tennis shoes should be OK. It may be breezy at the crest, so a windbreaker is recommended. There are toilets at (private) Camp Cielo at the trailhead, but they may not be available to us, plan on using bushes.

Weather: The weather is generally mild this time of year, but it can cool off quickly in the afternoon - extra clothing may be welcome.

Topo Map: Lake Cachuma Quadrangle, USGS, 7.5 minute series.

Directions: Driving time from the South Bay area should be about 2.5 hours. Follow US 101 northbound to Santa Barbara. Turn north onto highway 154, the exit is marked: State Street / 154 / Cachuma Lake. (The previous exit is La Cumbre Rd / Hope Ave.). Follow 154 approximately 19 miles, when you see the sign for "Lake Cachuma County Park 3/4 mile" prepare to turn left immediately. Turn left at the signs for Camp Cielo, Camp Whittier, and Rancho Alegre. Follow this road for 1.3 mile to the parking area at it's end (right side). The first half mile of this road is unpaved but good condition. Ignore the "No Trespassing" signs, the road is open to the public.

Questions/Reservations: If you would like more information contact Randy Ortland at 805/966-9422 or E-mail: 71620.2666@compuserve:com. Reservations are not required, but I would like to know who is planning to attend.