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Caliente Mountain Ridge Trail

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New Cuyama, California

Caliente Mountain Ridge Trail is a 16.9 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near New Cuyama, California that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 16.9 miles Elevation Gain: 2,437 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dogs on leash

hiking

nature trips

road biking

walking

bird watching

running

forest

views

wild flowers

Generally double track route rolls easily along the top of the ridge with great views to either side. The ultimate destination is Caliente Mountain which was the site of a WWII airplane watch hut, now fallen. Soda Lake shimmers to the north and the Cuyama Valley lies to the south for impressive views the whole way.

hiking
1 month ago

This trail has amazing views on both sides, Los Padres on the right and the Carrizo Plain/Soda Lake on the left. The drive up to the trailhead requires a high clearance vehicle and was muddy & slippery. We were fortunate to be in a vehicle with 4WD. The trail remains largely the same for the first 5 miles and is not steep. As you approach the peak the terrain changes somewhat and there are several steep hills. There is a dilapidated WWII watch tower at the summit with expansive views. This trail is totally exposed and I do not recommend doing it in the summer given that the plain regularly reaches 100 degrees. I definitely recommend trying in the spring when the weather is cooler and the flowers are out. However, too much rain makes the many dirt roads impassable.

hiking
muddy
no shade
2 months ago

Beautiful trail, amazing views and pretty good wildflowers, I don’t suggest going if it has rained recently, the first 3ish miles are super muddy and hard to get through if it is wet at all.

hiking
muddy
2 months ago

hiking
4 months ago

Pretty easy, great views. Would be awesome for trail bikes. Muddy in first 1 mile. Watch out for sinkholes

hiking
no shade
Sat Apr 13 2019

hiking
Sun Apr 07 2019

Came for the flowers in the plains, stayed for this mountain hike. Lovely weather and tons of flowers up here too. Next person that plans to do this hike should bring up a new notebook to add to the summit register!!!!

hiking
no shade
Tue Apr 02 2019

Beautiful view and wonderful wild flowers, spring time is the best time of the year its a cool 40 to 60 degrees F. The seasonal flowers start to bloom rapidly along the hillsides. Bring water, no water source along the ridge trail other than water puddles. Some or little snows on the shady area up on top.

hiking
Sat Mar 23 2019

The flowers are ABSOLUTELY STUNNING!!!!!! Talk about a superbloom

hiking
Thu Aug 30 2018

Avoid going midday or during a hot day since the trail is very exposed, you will find very little shade. Dominant vegetation on trail: Upperstory: -CA Junipers -Scrub Oak Midstory: -Golden bush -CA buckwheat Understory: -Dried out grasses and members of the Boraginaceae

hiking
Sun Apr 22 2018

4-21-18, Another CaCoHP for San Luis Obispo County, at 5,106 feet. Great spring day with flowers, but nowhere near as many in a super Bloom that can happen in the Carrizo Plain. After driving the narrow dirt road up from near Selby campground, I parked at the trailhead. I biked in about 5 miles and stashed the bike and hiked the rest of the way. Great views along the ridge of Carrizo, Soda lake, the San Andreas fault, all lead to a very interesting trip. Summitting was easy, and return trip was just as enjoyable. I was the only one on the trail, granting for reflection of solitude.

hiking
2 months ago

hiking
4 months ago

hiking
11 months ago

hiking
Sat May 18 2019

hiking
Wed Apr 17 2019

hiking
Sun Apr 07 2019

hiking
Sat Apr 06 2019

hiking
Sat Apr 06 2019

hiking
Sat Apr 06 2019

Wed May 16 2018

Sun Apr 16 2017