San Ysidro Trail is a 8.3 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Santa Barbara, California that features a waterfall and is rated as difficult. 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.

8.3 miles
3,021 feet
Out & Back

dogs on leash



horseback riding

mountain biking

nature trips

trail running






washed out

Please note that this trail was damaged during a mudslide. The Los Padres National Forest says the trail is currently open. There have been reports that is it not accessible from the trailhead on E Mountain Drive. The trail should be accessible from E Camino Cielo. Please check in with the Los Padres National Forest for the most up-to-date information. San Ysidro follows the course of the San Ysidro Creek along West Park Lane (private road, no public parking), then along the Edison Catway, and finally along trail. Of the local trails, it offers the greatest amount of shade for this climb. The rocky canyon walls are popular with local climbers. Deep pools become popular summer destinations while the waterfall, always at least a trickle, becomes popular after the winter rains.

16 days ago

Started at the top. There were a couple washed out sections that were sketchy to pass coming down. Trekking poles and grippy shoes helped. The views of the ocean were beautiful! Much of the vegetation shown in the photos is gone from a fire but this opened the view up even more. Trail disappeared once we reached the creek but it was fun to make our own trail along it.

1 month ago

this trail needs some love. very loose surface. 500ft from the top there are 2 slides that are 10-15ft across and extremely dangerous to pass. we turned back. not safe.

11 months ago

loved it went after it rained

Saturday, November 25, 2017

Uphill more than anticipated. Next time I'll let my dog swim at a lower pool and be content with that. Lots of pools.

Monday, November 20, 2017

Still plenty of water this time around.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

The trail along the creek is lovely and the pool with the waterfall is beautiful, but the hike to the top is nothing special, and the end of the trail is a road, which is pretty disappointing.

Friday, August 11, 2017

It was a pretty tough hike but definitely worth it.

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Bottom part of trail was mostly shaded and followed the creek. The upper half was a very hot hike but the view from the top was incredible.

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Amazing mountains view when you reach el camino del cielo it !!! I will do it again!!!!

Monday, June 12, 2017

Pools have water but the big Falls are down to a trickle just enough to keep the moss growing. Not too overgrown up to East Camino, just really dry. Couple of flowers left.

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Such a beautiful hike this morning. You couldn't see much because of all the fog, but on the positive side I wasn't getting baked by the sun. Came across 3 snakes and more people than I expected.

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Hiked on 5/25
Great trail as always. The big waterfall is down to a trickle by now.

Above the waterfall, portions of the trail are getting quite overgrown and in need of maintenance. With encroaching brush, including thistle, it may be advised to start avoiding shorts until brush is taken back.

Monday, May 29, 2017

Great trail

Friday, May 26, 2017

Went to the waterfall and back! Very nice and easy hike! Still a good amount of water in the creek!

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Happy Mother's Day! A great hike and so many Moms out on the trail:)

Monday, April 24, 2017

Beautiful hike all around with a creek you can play in! The start of the trail is strange because there are parts that are next to private property, but keep heading up and it's beautiful. The entire time you're hiking along the creek. There are mini waterfalls and the large one at the end. The water was chilly but very refreshing after hiking. Can't wait to go back!

Wednesday, April 05, 2017

Hiked to the very top and reached Camino Cielo Rd. Took a total of 6 hours and my Garmin tracked it as roughly 10 miles from the street side parking. I love this hike and would definitely return/recommend it. Not for the amateur day hiker, cardio and endurance will be tested. I took 2 decent sized water bottles and only drank 1-1/2 of what I had and that was with the days high being around 72 degrees. There is an area about 2 miles in that is the result of a rock slide and about 3 miles in while climbing the mountain you will come across a small stretch of trail that was taken out by a mud slide, but there is enough foot space for you to get past. The waterfall itself has begun to dwindle down to a small flow and will probably be back to a trickle in a month or so. Push yourself to the top and take in that view. Easily my favorite in the area. Channel Islands to the West and Los Padres Mountain Ranges right behind you.

Sunday, March 05, 2017

Long hike, LOVED doing it in March. I would assume that anytime between May-October this trail gets a lot of sun (on the upper half past the largest waterfall) and would require a lot of water to make it to the top. This hike can easily be made a 4 mile hike (the big waterfall is only 2 miles up the trail) but making it to the top gives great views and a GREAT booty workout. Wildflowers are awesome this time of year and the water from recent rains has the river overflowing with life. Highly recommend!

Friday, March 03, 2017

Waterfalls were amazing and the top of the trail gave great views

Thursday, February 09, 2017

Hiked through dense mist past several waterfalls and singing roar of the river. The 100 feet falls at the top was magnificent. Very little foot traffic - so enjoyed the beauty in peace.

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Gear workout, with a beautiful view.

Thursday, August 04, 2016

awesome downhill trail always riding it never gets boring highly recommend this trail

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Highly recommend it. Great hike didn't go as far as I would have liked but left more for next time also multiple trails around so a hot spot for hiking and so quite a few people on trails. It's an incline but a great workout makes going down enjoyable and rewarding. there was a little bit of water in the creek but waterfall was dry. I'd go again after a nice rain.

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Nice hike. More elevation than I expected, my fault! It was a good day for a hike, cool a little overcast. Just perfect!!!

Friday, April 29, 2016

Nice hike, lots of shade from the beautiful tree. Hiked it this past Sunday. Keeps eyes open for poison oak. Also saw a king snake in the middle of the trail having a treat.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Good main trail. Side trails had some poison oak. Saw a King snake having his breakfast. Bring poles if you have stability issues.

Sunday, April 03, 2016

Didn't go as far as wanted - had first time hikers - but the amount we hiked was beautiful! Creek still running as of April 3rd 2016

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Love it. Creak is still running as of March 27, 2016. Love to hear the sound of creak all the way. Luckily not many loud people on the trail.

Friday, March 18, 2016

Great hike. As of March 4, 2016 the waterfall was seriously loud and POURING water due to the rains hammering the Northern California area that weekend.

Be prepared for a TON of foot traffic. This is a super popular trail for loud groups of people for whatever reason. Not that there's anything wrong with that, just not a good hike for peaceful introspection.

Monday, December 28, 2015

Waterfall was dried up. Running water through the creek as you hike. Solid gradual incline. Well shaded. Great view of ocean mtns trees at 2mi mark.

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