“Hike the through the Aliso Canyon and along its ridge line for a short, but enjoyable experience.
— John McKinney
River/Creek · Views · Wildflowers
This hike starts out at the trailhead for the Aliso Interpretative Trail
, which lies at the upper portion of the Sage Hill Campground. From here, head north following the trail. After crossing Aliso Creek two times you'll come across a juncture with the Aliso Loop Trail
1/4 of a mile from the trailhead. Continue straight ahead on the Aliso Interpretative Trail
The trail then crosses the creek a few times before leaving the base of the canyon. At this point the trail climbs steadily up the shale hillside before taking you around the edge of a meadow. Continuing along the trail further, to mile 1.5 where there will be a trail junction between the Upper Oso Trail and the Aliso Loop Trail
. The Aliso Interpretive Trail ends here and you'll join the Aliso Loop Trail
Head south along the Aliso Loop Trail
from this point. Along this portion you'll have great views of the San Rafael and Santa Ynez Mountains. The trail then makes its way down the hillside to the edge of the Santa Ynez Canyon, at which point there are good views of the Santa Ynez River–the longest free-flowing stretch of river in the Southern California region. The trail then makes its way to the bottom of Aliso Canyon via a series of switchbacks. Shortly after reaching the bottom of the canyon the trail reconnects with the Aliso Interpretative Trail
, at which point the Aliso Loop Trail
ends. Rejoin the Aliso Interpretative Trail
by turning left. Hike a short distance to return to the original trailhead and parking area.
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