Judell Canyon Trail is a 8.9 mile out and back trail located near New Cuyama, California that offers the chance to see wildlife and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

8.9 miles
1,551 feet
Out & Back

dogs on leash




Directions from Taft: Travel eight miles south on Highway 33. Continue south for 13 miles after Highway 33 joins Highway 166. Stay on Highway 166 until it reaches Bell Road, turn left (south) and follow this road south and then east as it turns into Foothill Road. This then turns southeast and becomes Santa Barbara Canyon Rd. Then turn right onto FS 9N11 and follow this until a locked gate. Park here and begin hiking for five miles to Santa Barbara Potrero and turn south onto the Judell Trail.

5 months ago

This is a very beautiful trail in May with all the wildflowers. This canyon has the most wildflower diversity of any trail I have ever hiked. The views of the San Rafael Mountains from the Sierra Madres was also pretty fantastic. The trail was in decent shape, but it was in great need of some bushwacking at about the 2.5 mile mark, and the poison oak was very thick in areas with no option beyond having to push or bushwack through. The creek that flows down the Judell was stagnant in areas, but flowing in others; either way, it needed to be filtered until you get to the Sisquoc River at the bottom, which runs pretty clean. The trail, despite the need to bushwack, is pretty easy to follow, but does not see a lot of traffic.
The biggest disappointment, and the reason I took a star off of the review, is the locked gate that blocks access to the trailhead. The gate is locked 1.8 miles after you pass Dry Canyon Road, and adds 5.5 miles of hiking before you can even start the Judell trail. It is ridiculous to have this gate locked year round, and it turned a 9 mile hike into a 22 mile hike.
on IG as @picbynathan

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Moderate? 5 mile hike just to get to the trailhead. Basically it is a bear and lion trail these days.....
Sisquoc river is awesome.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

This Trail is not in Goleta!! It is 50 +miles from North or South
driving from the North or South approach. new Cuyama Hike.
Please update. Ignore rating (have not been there-- Long Drive)