Aliso Canyon Trail
[out of 5]
|For:||Hilly if you do the whole loop|
Lupine below cliff on Aliso Canyon Loop trail
Aliso Canyon Trail is the place to go to see pretty spring flowers. The saturation on Figueroa Mountain may be greater, but the variety here cannot be matched. It's possible in a good year to see just about every kind of flower that blooms in spring in Santa Barbara all at the same time.
Flowers like Chinese Houses, Blue Dicks, Fairy Lanterns, Mariposa Lillies and many many many more. I have even seen the mysterios Chocolate Lily.
The hike is a loop, about 4.5 miles long with some climbing, so I would rate it as moderate if you are in decent condition. But you aren't obligated to do it as a loop. You can opt to stay along the creek in the shade and avoid the upper, hilly section. Either way, if it's spring, there will be flowers all along the way.
You will need an Adventure Pass to park.
Aliso Canyon Trail Updates
Update trail conditions
Posted: November 8, 2010, 1:25 am
by: Cross Tie Walker
Hiked the Aliso Canyon Loop today with my daughter and one of the dogs. Lower (interpretive) trail is in great shape, with a tiny bit of water there at the third crossing with the reeds (stagnant). Otherwise, the entire draw was bone-dry.
Upper trail has one or two very minor slides along the talus ascent, but nothing at all impeding progress. It's in great shape overall and shows signs of recent trailwork.
Weather was great; overcast and tad muggy with no wind to speak of.
At the end of the interpretive trail, the final marker instructs the hiker that "if you choose to take the Loop Trail, go back across the creek to the trail junction." This isn't accurate; you're on the trail at this point and there's no back-tracking necessary. I can only surmise the terminus of the interpretive trail was somewhere across the creek when the brochures were printed in 1993.
Some photos at http://www.flickr.com/photos/umotamba/sets/72157625212980889/
G and Lilly
Posted: September 25, 2009, 4:21 pm
Just to let you know, the sign posts for the nature trail have been updated.
Each of the sign posts has the number from the brochure. Additionally, each of the posts has the appropriate portion of the brochure attached so you do not need to carry a brochure with you.
Posted: March 2, 2009, 8:29 am
The Aliso trail loop is in fine condition (March 2009), except for a rock slide above the switchback on the lower trail leaving the creek. I imagine horses might be spooked there, but perhaps a mule would be OK. The interpretive trail numbers are wearing off and we could find no fliers anyway so this service appears neglected. The trail down into Upper Oso from the 4-way junction is a veritable highway, unlike the more primitive trail heading north up the cliffs. The upper section is in bad shape and quite out of character with the rest of the hike, unless you like a “Jekyll and Hyde” experience. It is eroded with steep, sandy slides and hard to pick out at times. The top of the ridge sees little traffic judging by the heavy brush, although there are rock carvings going back many years.
Posted: March 27, 2006, 9:09 am
We just hiked the loop yesterday (3/26). The trail is in great shape. The climb up to the saddle that overlooks Upper Oso campground is in fairly good shape even though you could tell that some horses had gone through. All the streams were flowing from the rain Saturday morning. There were quite a few wildflowers out, but there will probably be alot more out within the next month. The views were great, but the main issue was the ticks. We didn't get any on us but we picked 5 off of our dog. Be careful.
Posted: March 2, 2006, 11:44 am
|Does anyone know where to buy an adventure pass in advance? There are sings to buy them in the park, but we couldn't find any either at the ranger stations or at the two other places indicated in the park as places to obtein them.
You can drive all the way to the first water crossing, and usually they sell them there. However, correct me if I'm wrong, but I don't think they are needed any longer before the checkpoint, only selected areas are still enforced.
Posted: March 2, 2006, 10:54 am
We hiked this trail on Saturday and it was beautiful. The trail is in great shape.
Lots of wild flowers already in bloom.
The hike was beautiful but we were worrried all the time because we were afraid we would be getting a $$$ ticket for parking without an adventure pass. We tried to buy one, but it was impossible!
Does anyone know where to buy an adventure pass in advance? There are sings to buy them in the park, but we couldn't find any either at the ranger stations or at the two other places indicated in the park as places to obtein them.
Posted: April 30, 2005, 5:28 pm
The trail is in great condition, just overgrown with flowers, which makes for a really nice hike. Just watch out for the occasional tick. Some water on the upper part of the loop, which is unusual. The only slide has been fixed. Burn area barely visible in all this green. Definitely worth the hike!
Posted: March 23, 2005, 8:28 pm
Post your update here.