Saturday April 1,  2017 – Sisar Canyon to White Ledge Camp, Ventura County

Not a beginners hike…

Mileage:   ~ 11 Miles RT total (out and back + 1 mile RT from the parking to the trailhead)

Gain:  ~ 1400’ (all pretty gradual but continuous on the way out/ and all down on the way back)

Rated: Moderate  ++ (for distance and reasonable gain)

Hiking time: ~ 5 hours

Description:  We loved this hike so much the first time we did it in January that we said we had to come back in Springtime when the wildflowers are out and also show it to anyone who missed it.  In the upper Ojai Valley, between Ojai and Santa Paula, this trail follows Sisar Creek through a canopy of oak, sycamore and bay laurel up a beautiful canyon. We will climb out of the back of the canyon on a service road, enjoying views across the Ojai valley,  and of the Sespe/ Topatopa Mountain ridge to the East.

Depending on air quality/ fog, we may catch glimpses of a Channel island or 2.  We continue uphill and turn back into woodlands, to eventually reach White Ledge Campground, our snack spot/ turnaround. Then we return the same way along a nice single track.

Bring/ Wear:  Shoes with good tread, camera, hiking poles, lunch/ snacks, LOTS of water/ electrolytes (2 – 3 Liters), a HAT and sunscreen.   Bring an extra outer layer in case it is chilly first thing in the morning or in case it gets windy later.

Adventure Pass:  Not required

Dogs: OK, if kept on a leash and well behaved around other dogs, people with poles, and mountain bikers.   Bear in mind the distance and gain as dogs can get tired/ hot.  If you bring your dog, please plan to drive yourself.

Carpooling from Santa Clarita Valley to the trail head:   As parking is limited at the trailhead, we strongly recommend that you carpool.   Meet at Walmart parking lot at 27931 Kelly Johnson PKWY in Valencia,  in the Southwest corner, at 6:45 AM for a 7:00 AM SHARP departure to the trailhead. We prefer that you carpool / caravan as finding the trailhead may be difficult for some.

Please be respectful of your driver’s support by contributing something at the end of your carpool to help defray the cost of gas – THX

Directions to trail head: Near 12600 Sisar Road, Ojai, CA 93023 (but prefer you use directions, Google can be inaccurate sometimes)

From LA / Valencia – Take the I-5 North to the 126 West (Direction = Ventura). Continue ~30 minutes / 28 miles on the 126 West to Santa Paula.  Take Exit 12 off the 126 to Hwy 150 – North toward Ojai.   Turn up 10th Street (150) and go North through the town of Santa Paula, veering slight right at the end of town (where it intersects with Santa Paula St.), and head out of town on 150 toward Ojai.  After about 10 minutes you will see the St. Thomas Aquinas School shiny basilica on the right. Pass it and about 5 minutes later, (9 miles since downtown Santa Paula), look on the right for Fire Station 20, followed by the Stagecoach Station Market.  Sisar Road will be immediately there on the right, just before  Summit Elementary School.  Turn into the Stagecoach Market Parking lot and park.  We will hike a 1/2 mile from here to the trailhead.   Meet your leader in the Stagecoach Station parking lot at 8:00 AM for an 8:15AM SHARP departure up to the trailhead.  Please be respectful of the area’s residents by being quite until we get to the trailhead!

Leader’s Note:  There are no bathrooms at the trailhead but plenty of cover along the trail!

Leader:  Steve I.

April 15, 2017 – Local Easter Weekend hike – Weldon to East Canyon with a Mission Peak extension option

Rated: Moderate/ Moderate +, depending on whether you choose the shorter or longer one.

Due to the gain at the beginning, coming up Weldon, we do not consider this a Beginner’s hike (you need to be reasonably fit). If you can do Towsley without much trouble, you can do either of these hikes.

Shorter Hike route – Approx. 6 miles with ~1500′ gain: Up Weldon Canyon, across to the top of East Canyon and back down to the East Canyon trailhead.  ~ 3 hours, no snack break.

Longer Hike route – Approx. 9 miles with ~1600′ + gain: Up Weldon Canyon to the top of East Canyon, across to Mission Peak and back again, Then back down to the East Canyon trailhead. ~ 4 hours with snack break.

We give you CHOICES!!  This is a 6 mile or a 9 mile hike, depending upon the option you select – either one gets you ~ 1500’ gain!  Most of that gain is in the first hour of the hike up Weldon Cyn and we will take that part a little easier.

Description:   East Canyon is a well kept secret among SCV hikers.  Although it is in SCV, we will whisk you away to rolling hills, views and quiet oak woodlands of the 480-acre Michael D. Antonovich Open Space. The area straddles the ridgeline of the Santa Susana Mountains and features mixed woodlands of big cone Douglas-fir, big leaf maple, coast live oak, California black walnut, native ash, and valley oak.  Chances are high we will meet no one else for most of the hike (try doing that at Towsley on a Saturday!!).

We start by going steeply UP UP UP Weldon Canyon, then West along a beautiful oak tree lined service road to reach the top of East Canyon.  Here we will say “Adios” to any of our hikers who only want the shorter 6 mile hike, as they go directly down East Cyn, enjoying American walnut trees, views of the entire SCV and Rice Canyon below.

The rest of us will continue up East Canyon to where it meets the top of O’Melveny Canyon.  We hike across the top, along grasslands and an oak lined lane, over to Mission Peak, which may be windy.  We will have a quick lunch/ snack stop here before returning to the top of East Canyon. Then it’s a nice downhill hike back to our vehicles via East Canyon.

Meet  your leader:  At the base of East Canyon at 7:00AM for a 7:15AM SHARP departure in the carpool. Park on the Old Road, see detailed directions below.

(VERY Short) Carpool: Meet at East Canyon first.  We will leave most of the cars at East Canyon (where we will end the hike), and carpool the entire group in a few cars a very short distance over to the Weldon Canyon Trail head (22945 Coltrane Avenue, Newhall), and start the hike there (it is just up the Old Road).   If you plan to do the shorter 6 mile hike, park your car at East Canyon and carpool to Weldon with us.

Note: At the end of the longer hike, a few of us will ferry the Carpoolers who kindly drove you the short distance to Weldon Canyon back to their cars. (THANK YOU  in advance for your assistance).

Directions to East Canyon meeting spot:   Exit the I-5 freeway at Calgrove. Turn West. Follow Calgrove around a curve and through one signal. You will now be on The Old Road.  Pass Towsley Cyn on the right; then the Post Office; then the Church of the Nazarene.  Immediately after passing the Church, look for cars and park along the side of the Old Road, behind the white line. This is where we will meet.

Bring:  Lots of water, snack/lunch, hiking poles if you have them, and a camera if you have one.  Good shoes with tread are a must going up Weldon.  If the day is cool, bring an extra layer to avoid a chill up on windy Mission Peak.

Adventure Pass:  Not required

Dogs: Ok, if on a leash and well-behaved with other dogs / people.

Leader:  Steve I.

Saturday April 22, 2017 – Historical Hike : Ye Olde Alpine Tavern and Mt Lowe Railway

Distance:  ~ 7 miles total (out and back).

Gain: ~ 500′

Rated: Easy to Moderate

Description:  Once everyone has arrived at Ye Alpine Tavern ruins, Club Historian, Alan Pollack, from the Santa Clarita Historical Society, will tell us the brief history of the tavern and the Mt. Lowe electric Railroad. The Railroad brought people to the tavern.

The Mt. Lowe Railway operated from 1893-1936. It is on the National Register of Historic Places, as of 1993. The train crossed 18 bridges between Echo Mountain and the Alpine Tavern. The one in front of the tavern was a large “S” shaped bridge. Both end foundations are still visible. The Tavern was built in 1895, destroyed by fire in 1936, and dynamited in 1959 to allow for the construction of the trail camp, as you will see it today.

NOTE: THERE ARE RESTROOMS in the tavern area for your convenience.  (Bring TP…as it is not always stocked).

Carpooling from Santa Clarita Valley:  Meet at Towsley Canyon parking area in front of the green gate at 8:00AM to arrange carpools.  We will leave at 8:15AM SHARP for the trailhead.

(Please be respectful of your driver’s support by contributing something at the end of your carpool to help defray the cost of gas – THX).

Directions to Carpool meeting spot in Santa Clarita Valley:  Exit the I-5 freeway in Santa Clarita Valley at Calgrove Blvd. Turn West and follow Calgrove around a curve and through one light. You will now see the gate to Towsley Canyon on your right.   Park and look for a group of hikers/ leader.

Directions to the Hike starting point:  From Santa Clarita, take the I-5 South to the 210 East.  Exit the 210 at Hwy 2 Angeles Crest Hwy, North, into the mountains/ forest. Take Hwy 2 all the way to Mt Wilson/ Red Box Road. Turn Right.

You will immediately see the Native American Indian Cultural Center (Haramonkngna) on your right.  Continue traveling on this road approximately 2.3 miles.  There will be a turn out on the right AND the left side. Park on the right side, if there is space to park. To be sure you are in the correct location, look for a locked forest gate on the right, with the number 2N50 on the gate. This is where we will meet at 9:00AM to start up the trail at 9:15AM Sharp.

Bring:   Water (3 liters is recommended), electrolytes if it is a hot day, sunscreen, hat, lunch/ snacks, hiking poles which can be helpful on the climb , and of course your camera. Wear layered clothing in case it gets hot or cold. Wear good boots with tread.

Historian: Alan Pollack

Hike Leader: Dianne

Saturday, April 29, 2017 – Warm Springs Mountain summit (4000′)

Distance: ~ 13 miles total – Out and back style

Gain: ~ 2400 feet!

RATING: Strenuous (for Distance and Gain all the way). This is a tough hike for experienced hikers, especially if it is a warm day

Description: We have added this hike to our inventory for strongest hikers who need a new local challenge. The gain continues the whole way out, being toughest in the first hour.  To cover the distance we will maintain a decent pace.

The pay off is being far off the beaten path and the possibility of some amazing views (depending on visibility). If you enjoyed the challenge of Slide Mountain, you will like this hike.

Bring:  A snack/lunch, water (3+ liters is recommended), electrolytes if it is a hot day, sunscreen, hat, hiking poles will help stamina. NOTE: There is very little shade on this hike, prepare accordingly.

!!! Wear/ pack layered clothing, including a windbreaker as it may turn windy / cold at the top.  Good boots with tread are a given.

Carpooling from Santa Clarita:   We will meet at the Mc Donalds in Castaic at 7:15AM for a 7:30AM SHARP departure to the trail head (see below).  We will be carpooling to the trailhead above Castaic on I-5, about 20 minutes away.  Trailhead has limited parking so carpooling is recommended.

Directions to McDonalds in Castaic:  From Valencia / SFV –  take the I-5 North past Santa Clarita.  Exit 176B, Lake Hughes Road, Mc Donalds is on the left on the corner with Castaic Road.  Meet at South end of parking lot.

Please be respectful of your driver’s support by contributing something at the end of your carpool to help defray the cost of gas.

Alternatively, meet at the Trail head – Directions:   Exit the 5 North in Castaic at Exit 176B, Lake Hughes Road.   Pass McDonalds on the left, heading out Lake Hughes Road (North East) past the lake on the left for 13.2 miles. You round a bend, see a widespot in the road with some old red medical buildings on the left. This is Warm Springs Camp with the trailhead entrance 6N32 white gate on the left.  Park on the wide dirt area on the right of the road, facing out and behind white lines. Do not obstruct any gates!  Meet us here, to leave at 8:00AM.

Note: There are no restrooms at trailhead.

Adventure Pass:  Not required.

Dogs: OK , if on leash and well behaved (please bear the distance, lack of shade, and your dog’s stamina in mind (if you do not wish to carry your dog).

Leader:  Steve I.

Co- Leader(s):   Jenn C



Camping April 6-9: at the Mojave Preserve. Get INFO Here!