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San Ysidro Trail

HARD 83 reviews
#12 of 177 trails in

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.

Distance: 8.3 miles Elevation Gain: 3,021 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dogs on leash

hiking

horseback riding

mountain biking

nature trips

trail running

bird watching

forest

river

views

waterfall

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.

hiking
bugs
no shade
over grown
scramble
washed out
11 days ago

Top of the trail is in serious need of maintenance. Bottom 2 miles are beautiful (Parking at E Mountain Trailhead), after that you're on your own. Very overgrown (long sleeves a must, many of the wooden retaining walls appear to have been burned by the fire and than washed out, loose footing and narrow trail on steep terrain. It's still passable (with some jumping and careful foot placement), I made it within .5 miles of the top and ran into a colony of bee's(Miner bee's maybe - dark coloring with individual nests on the ground) covering the trail. This was a flatter segment so you might be able to cut around but there obviously haven't been many people through in a while. Also note cell service is spotty at best, bee careful!!

hiking
3 months ago

It's a nice trail. You need to start from the E mountains rd. You will go up the hill. The last mile of this trail is still destroyed. Still, my hike was 8 miles. The first 2 miles were nice then you need good time boots and a good balance.

no shade
scramble
washed out
4 months ago

El Camino Cielo road was closed at Gibraltar so we drove down to the Mountain Drive head which is accessible from Park Lane. Trail quite sketchy above the waterfall. Several tough washouts but the worst about 1 mile from the top. Still worth doing but bring sticks and plenty of water. Not sure why the directions take you to the top as the assumed trail head - I’d rather hike up and then down instead of down and up.

hiking
no shade
over grown
rocky
scramble
4 months ago

I started from the E Mountain Drive trail head, it’s open. The trail is a bit crowded up to the waterfall. After the waterfall the crowds definitely thin out. I went on a Saturday. The trail is mellow and beautiful the whole way to the falls, it follows the creek so you get the peaceful sound of the water on the way up. There are a few creek crossings but there are many stones to hop on so they’re not challenging at all. The trail is completely shaded. After the waterfall there is absolutely no shade, you are exposed to the elements all the way up to the end of the trail at Camino Cielo road. I brought 2 liters of water and I went through it all. The trail has in fact been swept away in many portions. Very very sketchy in some sections, all the lose rock and steepness is challenging. As someone else mention trekking poles are a huge advantage. It’s all uphill with no shade. You are rewarded with ocean views. I marked the sketchy parts on the trail with waypoints on my recording. Pack a daypack with plenty of water, first aid, food, etc. Get out there, happy trails.-Verified Completed-

hiking
7 months 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.

8 months 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.

Thursday, December 28, 2017

loved it went after it rained

hiking
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.

hiking
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.

hiking
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.

hiking
Sunday, June 18, 2017

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

hiking
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.

hiking
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.

hiking
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

hiking
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:)

hiking
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!

hiking
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.

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