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Baron Ranch Trails on Gaviota Coast – Post-hike Coastal Picnic

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Baron Ranch Trails on Gaviota Coast – Post-hike Coastal Picnic

Have you ever heard of the Baron Ranch hiking trails? Most folks haven’t, but it’s a splendid — and sometimes shady — trail a couple miles west of Refugio State Beach and it’s worth the trip.

And if that’s not enough, we’ll have a picnic at Refugio SB after the hike where Ann and I have reserved two campsites.

The hike is about a 6.9 mile lollipop with 1,300′ total ascent and is rated MEDIUM. See the hike rating guide at

Our hike begins in the canyon that forms the Arroyo Quemado Creek watershed. The trail follows a network of ranch roads leading through a habitat restoration area and into the backcountry.

The first mile of the trail is relatively flat and follows the bottom of the canyon. Just beyond the one-mile mark the road transitions into the riparian zone and continues to parallel the creek, it’s here that the trail starts to take on a more wilderness feel.

At 2.1 miles and 2.6 miles, the trail splits to form a loop up into the mountains. The upper portion of the Loop Trail provides some exceptional vistas down the canyon and out towards the ocean with views of the island on a clear day. Views along the canyons open up to reveal the Pacific Ocean and the Channel Islands. At the top of the loop, the single-track section of the Loop Trail trail connects again to a ranch road and then returns to the beginning of the loop and the main trail.

[Note. The trail is currently closed until 9/17 due to the recent restrictions placed on California’s National Forests in order to prevent fire activity.]


– Take Hwy 101 North, 2.4 miles past Refugio Road and exit
– Turn right at the road crossing onto Arroyo Quemada Ln. (Watch for the yellow sign indicating “cross-traffic ahead”).
– Immediately turn left onto Calle Real and proceed approximately 3/4 mile until the road reaches a street sign that says “End”.
– Use the circle to turn around and park along Calle Real.

September 26 2021


Date: September 26
Time: 10:00 am - 12:00 pm
Hike Categories:
Website: Visit Event Website


Baron Ranch Trailhead

14550 Calle Real
Goleta, CA 93117 US

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Hiking With Dean
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