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Rattlesnake Canyon is a 4.4 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Santa Barbara, California that features a waterfall and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking, running, and horses and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Length 4.4 mi Elevation gain 1,604 ft Route type Out & Back
Dogs on leash Hiking Horseback riding Running Forest River Views Waterfall Wildlife Rocky
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Reviews (646)
Photos (809)
Recordings (592)
Completed (1132)
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chad arkoff
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarOctober 23, 2020
Hiking

Great hike. Punchy climb.

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Francisco Guzman
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarOctober 22, 2020
HikingGreat!

Great hike recommend taking the trail up the ridge to the left after the grassy and dry open area if you like a challenge but was 7 miles there and back from the los padres national forest sign at the top but was a great hike completed it in 2 hrs and 15 mins

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Kaitlyn D
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarOctober 18, 2020
HikingGreat!

There was a lot of shade, and we saw some great creeks and a little waterfall.

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Jose Navarrete
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarOctober 3, 2020
Hiking
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Jennifer Fields
Yellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarSeptember 26, 2020
Hiking

This trail is closed due to fire danger until at least 10/1/2020. Our fire crews are extremely stretched thin right now, please take that into consideration before you continue on this trail.

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Nancy Viridiana
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 23, 2020
Hiking

Beautiful hike, challenging for sure!. First time The couple times I attempted this hike I traveled wth my todler 4-18 months in between. Adventures and explored. Finally got a chance to try it alone. Just a little off the open field grass/dry about another 20-25 mins u reach jibralter (east camonino cielo rd. :) nice hike challenging nice terrain shifts but overall rewarding

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Connor Crook
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 18, 2020
Hiking
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Michelle White
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 14, 2020
Hiking

Beautiful! So much water

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Richard Mabe
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSeptember 13, 2020
Hiking

Great trail. Uphill almost the entire way. Fairly strenuous. Wonderful water and rock features.

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Nicole Laprise
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarSeptember 6, 2020
Hiking

Limited street parking. Challenging hike especially on a hot day. Got lost a couple of times, recommend downloading a map. A few scenic views but overall nothing spectacular in comparison to other hikes. Distance was over 5 miles as others have noted. Took me 2.5 hours to complete.

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Carlos Rodriguez
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 2, 2020
Hiking
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Krishnan Ramaswami
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 1, 2020

Gorgeous shady creeks with mini-waterfalls were such a treat!

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MAGAÑA'S TRAININ CAMP AND FITNESS
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 31, 2020

excellent hike still water on the creek nice spots to take picture 5.5 milles is really steap but its worth it. I totally recommend.

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Hunt Weber
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 29, 2020
Off Road Driving

Super fun hike. We logged 5.5 miles. I’m super stoked I downloaded the maps since there are a couple forks in the trail that aren’t labeled.

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Jeff Walker
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarAugust 28, 2020
Hiking

Great trail. Lots of shade. Good hard hike with a lot of climbing. Heavy traffic and trail narrow in spots. Love the waterfall and stream

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Emily Elliott
Yellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarAugust 24, 2020
Hiking

I have been hiking all over CA and have never seen a rattlesnake until today! Scared me badly but I didn’t get bit! Just keep your eyes out on this trail!

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Arnold C. Hernandes
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarAugust 24, 2020
Hiking

We love hiking this trail and try to beat the time that we had before

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Tyler Gilbert
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 23, 2020
Hiking

Rattlesnake Canyon is a true challenge, with a final climb of about 600ft or more in the last mile alone. But the incredible scenery along the way makes it so worth it. Waterfalls, incredible, towering boulders, and vast canyon landscapes are just some of the natural wonders you can look forward to on this hike! Pack sunscreen, a good sun hat, and lots of water if you want to do the final climb. I went on an overcast day, but I can imagine the last stretch being a sunburn bonanza without. The trail ends at a crossroads to other trails, and doesn’t have that final “payoff” that most people expect, but the scenery along the way is worth every minute, and the sense of accomplishment when you reach that the end of the trail is exhilarating. I’m gonna plan to do this hike again, but keep on going onto one of the other trails it connects to at the end.

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Hayward Kwit
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 23, 2020
Hiking
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Matthew Rochester
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarAugust 19, 2020
HikingGreat!Scramble

NOTE: I did this hike last year in the summer. Okay so this hike has a lot of GOOD with a little bad. First off, the trail is gorgeous and even better in a light rain. There's waterfalls, a small field section and cool rocks. Super fun visually. The trail is steep with a handful of rigorous parts, but the views/trail aesthetic totally make up for this. Now the only bad... there isn't really a great finish to this hike. The end of the trail ends on a road you could drive to. The view is great but you will be standing at, essentially, a car pull off looking out. Given the difficulty of the trail some might not like this. However, I still think this hike was super worth it. It's a perfect example of "its about the journey not the destination."

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kat User
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarAugust 19, 2020
HikingBugsScramble

a little difficult finding the “right” trail. we didn’t make it to a peak, but cool views and a swimming hole / water along the way. half shaded, half sunny. bugs were buzzing but none attacked.

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Emerson Curtright
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarAugust 16, 2020
HikingBugsGreat!

Lots of mosquitos and lots of poison oak! Worth it though. The scenery is awesome pretty much the whole time. We started at 7:00 a.m. today (Saturday morning) and plenty of people were already on the trail. Not too bad though and everybody was good about giving each other space. Will definitely come back. We turned around at the meadow because it was already scorching.

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Wendy Nishikawa
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 15, 2020
HikingBugs

I got here at 6:15 am, and it was already warm! Love this hike, as it’s a good workout for only a 5 mile hike. Toward Mile 1.5, it got very buggy - had to continually swat mosquitos and flies away from my head. Annoying. The last .5 mile to Gibraltar Road is a good climb, avoid doing this on a hot day or go early like I did. Single track in most places and not a lot of mask wearing (COVID). Nice small waterfall in the creek but otherwise pretty dry and lots of poison oak.

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J.P. Jenks
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 13, 2020
HikingGreat!

Great hike. More to follow.

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Richard Messmore
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 7, 2020
Hiking

Loop over Mission Craigs

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JJ K.
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 3, 2020
Hiking

I had so much fun on this beautiful trail this weekend. Lots of areas of shade throughout, especially in the middle of the hike, with less shade near the end. Lots of rocks to scramble on and explore or sit near the water. As an earlier reviewer said, the last 20 minutes or so really cranks the intensity up a notch. I recommend downloading the map to have with you, as it is quite easy to get off trail in a few spots.

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E Nowatzki
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJuly 29, 2020
Hiking

Buggy in the late afternoon!

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