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Beach to Backcountry Trail

Intermediate
 3.5 (2) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

A short, yet steep route leading up to the wind eroded sandstone caves overlooking Gaviota Beach.


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Map Key

3.5

Miles

5.6

KM

Out and Back

851' 259 m

High

36' 11 m

Low

908' 277 m

Up

909' 277 m

Down

10%

Avg Grade (6°)

33%

Max Grade (18°)

Dogs Unknown

Features Birding · Cave · Views

Family Friendly Kids will love the caves and rocks, and the journey isn't too long for youngsters.

Overview

This is a short and popular trail, using a well-worn but steep path up to the wind eroded sandstone caves, overlooking Gaviota Beach.

Need to Know

There is very little shade until you get to the first wind tunnel. There are both rocky and loose sand sections. Ankles and knees might take a little bit of a pounding!

Description

The trailhead starts at the parking area adjacent to and up from Gaviota Beach. Begin your journey on the service road, and head away from the beach. Where the trail up to the wind tunnels splits from the service road you'll find an information board with local routes and trails.

From the kiosk, the trail will lead you up the mountain through a patch of grassland and up steep inclines. The off-road trail starts with a steep dirt incline, but once past that you'll ease into a more gradual incline.

Once you get up the first steep climb, there is a place to stop and enjoy the views overlooking Gaviota Beach and Gaviota Rest Stop and Peak, plus the 101 Freeway. It's the top of the first hill; take the trail to the right for great views, and to the left through some boulders to continue upward toward the tunnels. There are several wind tunnels around so, explore. Many visitors will make this the end of their journey, but the trail continues just a little way further.

This trail connects with other trails that lead further into the mountain and park.

Flora & Fauna

Grass, bush, dirt and rock trails.

Contacts

Shared By:

Johan van den Heever

Trail Ratings

  3.5 from 2 votes

#4179

Overall
  3.5 from 2 votes
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Recommended Route Rankings

#611

in California

#4,179

Overall
25 Views Last Month
1,299 Since Jul 3, 2016
Intermediate

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Photos

Gaviota Peak in the distance.
Jul 3, 2016 near Buellton, CA
Top of the trail, after winding through some boulders.
Jul 3, 2016 near Buellton, CA
Gaviota Beach, at railway bridge, 101 motorway on left.
Jul 3, 2016 near Buellton, CA
Beginning of the trail
Aug 29, 2016 near Buellton, CA
Wind tunnels
Aug 29, 2016 near Buellton, CA

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Check-Ins

Jan 25, 2020
Mike C
Jan 27, 2019
Steve Cullumber
Jan 1, 2019
Clary Eisenbach
Dec 29, 2018
Ryan Taitano
2.7mi
Dec 23, 2017
Josh Rosen
3.5mi