Posted by: James Wapotich | April 21, 2019

Trail Quest: Cold Spring Canyon

Tangerine Falls trail closure thomas fire cold spring trail montecito hike santa barbara Los Padres National Forest

Tangerine Falls

Made two hikes into Cold Spring Canyon. The trailhead along Mountain Drive is still closed until they put in a bridge across the washed out section of the road. However, thanks to Montecito Trails Foundation working with the city and county, the canyon is now accessible from both the West Fork Cold Spring side from Gibraltar Road and from the East Fork Cold Spring side coming in from Hot Springs Trail.

Both trails are in excellent condition. The off-trail route to Tangerine Falls, however, is more or less completely wiped out, the best route now is to just hike up the creek. The last section to the base of the falls is now harder than it was before. I also hiked up to the Root Cellar, that trail fared better because it’s away from the creek. However, once the trail arrives above the falls, it is also largely washed away, with again the best route being up the creek, until just before the Root Cellar. Lots of wildflowers happening in both canyons.

This article appear in section A of the April 1st, 2019 edition of Santa Barbara News-Press.

Above tangerine falls thomas fire cold spring trail canyon montecito santa barbara los padres national forest

Tangerine Falls is seen from the trail that leads above the falls

Root Cellar thomas fire above tangerine falls cold spring canyon los padres national forest

The Root Cellar

Mild Maids cold spring canyon hike montecito trail los padres national forest

Milk Maids

purple nightshade buds cold spring canyon thomas fire regrowth montecito los padres national forest

Purple nightshade buds

chaparral pea thomas fire regrowth montecito hike los padres national forest

Chaparral pea

Cascades and pools East Fork Cold Spring Creek montecito hike trail thomas fire los padres national forest

Cascades and pools East Fork Cold Spring Creek

 


Responses

  1. Looks awesome? Where exactly is this?

    • This behind Montecito on the Front Country side of the Santa Ynez Mountains. The main trailhead along Mountain Drive is closed due to damage from the 2018 Debris Flow. The canyon however is accessible from Gibraltar Road/West Fork Cold Spring Trail or by coming in from Hot Springs Trail.


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