Franklin Trail is a 15.5 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Carpinteria, California that features a lake and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking, running, and nature trips and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 15.5 miles Elevation Gain: 4,557 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dogs on leash

hiking

nature trips

running

lake

river

views

wild flowers

wildlife

no shade

The south end is at Carpinteria High School and starts enclosed in fencing. This opens up to tight switchbacks that climb to utility roads. The utility roads are well signed as the route twists and rolls through the foothills. After 5.7 miles, trail leaves the road and climbs to the top. This section is still rough with many obstacles. After 8 miles, the Divide Peak OHV Route is reached. The trail continues directly across this but may be hard to see. Follow the overgrown flatter area west through reaching trees and it should become easier to follow as it goes. Alder Creek Camp is about 0.6 miles below and easily recognized. Blackberries toward the bottom can make travel there difficult as well as the initial navigation up the trail from that side.

hiking
bugs
no shade
over grown
10 days ago

A deceivingly difficult trail as it’s entirely in the sun and slightly overgrown. Easy to path find, however at the turn off where the phone towers are, we encountered two different massive swarms of bees, one set was nesting (ground) bees and harmless but the other was not. No foreseeable end to the swarm and no way to go around so we had to turn back around mile 5.5 or 6? Trail is overgrown, hard to tell exactly where they were coming from.

running
17 days ago

Estas montañas están perfectas para quemar calorías y desestresarte tiene una vista muy bonita para el pueblo 100 % recomendada.

hiking
1 month ago

Hey want to hike to Alder camp wanted to see reviews does anyone have any?

hiking
1 month ago

Well marked. Not alot of shady areas. Bring a hat. Incline is nice. I didn’t finish the entire way. Was in a time crunch but I hope to complete it next time. Great views of Carpinteria.

hiking
1 month ago

We went all the way to the top to the Mountains. About 7.5 miles each way. Honestly, brutal last 1.5- 2 miles in terms of just going up, and last .5 finishes you off. Tired at top, but oh so satisfying to take a photo with sign up there. Bring LOTS of water, very little shade towards top. 4.5 hours to get up. 3 hours to get down. No way kids could do the full thing. Dog would have to be young and energetic. Worth it? Absolutely yes. Get ready to work for the reward.

hiking
1 month ago

Went on the trail two days ago, it’s open

hiking
1 month ago

Is the trail open?

hiking
1 month ago

Good. Cloudy. And far. Hiked on a very cloudy drizzly day and couldnt see where I was going. It was surreal but great climb.

2 months ago

today is March second and I've been looking to see if this trail is open, does anyone know if the Franklin trail is open during the Corona virus closures? if someone can plz respond asap as I am driving from LA. thank u

hiking
no shade
rocky
2 months ago

hiking
no shade
2 months ago

This has definitely become one of my favorite trails! I made it up to mile 4 before running out of time. Mile 3 is worth getting to for the views. This trail isn't hard by any means, unless you're attempting the full 20mi RT in a day.

hiking
no shade
3 months ago

Very fun trail. Heavy trafficked. Awesome views!

running
4 months ago

Beautiful trail. Loved the zig zag switch back heaven. Great views.

hiking
4 months ago

Nice walking and running trail....watch for mountain bikes coming down fast!

hiking
4 months ago

This is the Best Trail in the World, Great Views of Carpinteria

hiking
off trail
rocky
5 months ago

I give the trail 4.5 stars. I completed the entire Franklin Trail, twice! Both times a clocked 10.25mi each way (thus 20.5mi our&back). Someone already noted this below- I am confirming! Also I recorded 6,500ft both times (~4,600 northbound and ~1,900 back southbound). The route is really well marked at first part. At mile 5.2 there is a turn off main route onto singletrack where a long climb up starts (this is the only tricky turn). There are lots of day hikers and people using these first few miles. The climbs up are also very steep on both sides of the peak. Once at the peak going down the back side the trail is significantly less used. Once down in the canyon follow the creek (almost exclusively on the EAST side) all the way till you pop out about 0.3mi before the lake. It is a really neat section but requires some minor trail finding due to this section not being used as much and lots of blackberry bushes. I created a STRAVA segment as well for reference for everyone.

hiking
6 months ago

Rating: Two Poops. Parking is available at school when not in session. Trail entrance is on west side of parking lot. Follow the path up a ways to find a nicely maintained trail.

hiking
6 months ago

Did 2.5 miles in, great workout and some beautiful views of Carpinteria and the ocean. Really enjoyed it!!

hiking
6 months ago

***WARNING*** This trail is only open to the public for 5.2 miles. If you pass the silver metal bench you are on private property! You are trespassing and may be treated as such!

hiking
no shade
7 months ago

I thought this trail was great. Very well maintained until mile 5 and then the elevation really gets going, plus it’s much less trafficked. Recommend getting on the trail before 8am bc the lack of shade becomes a concern after 10am. Loved that there were dog bowls every mile or so on the trail in case you hike with a buddy! The one caveat is that the trail is inaccurately marked in AllTrails database. To the lake and back is 20 miles total. I made it to the top of franklin trail and it is both marked as 8miles one way//my recording in app reflected an 8mile journey. Therefore I was a bit underprepared and disappointed I couldn’t do the full hike but intend to return!

hiking
rocky
8 months ago

hiking
10 months ago

Glad to have this trail in my backyard! I am a moderately experienced mid distance trail runner. been as far as divide peak. On that occasion, in mid spring, I packed light taking only a few snacks and 1.5 L of water. Running the majority of the trail i completed the roundtrip in four hours. The first four miles Of the trail are steep uphill interspersed with several steep drop offs. After 4 miles, between the first and last steep climbs, the topography becomes varied. undulating terrain with rolling Hills and gentler climbs and falls. The last 2 miles before the peak are steep, rough, hot, grassy, dirty and slow. It should be taken into account by any prospective summiters that this portion of the trail takes nearly as long to descend as ascend. The top is a deserty area whose lack of shade is made up for by extraordinary views !

recorded Recording - Jun 16, 10:48 AM

hiking
no shade
rocky
11 months ago

hiking
no shade
Sat Mar 16 2019

Sun Jan 27 2019

The vertical gain is only about 4,500 feet, not 6,200.

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