385: there were probably 20-30 there, but enough pools for everyone. Water flowing in Alder Creek (not east fork) and Sespe Creek. … From the trailhead you enter the Sespe Wilderness. Short answer: Piedra to Sespe is way, way, way, way, way easier and faster, for a few reasons. posted by Howard Esteban @ 6:23 AM 0 Comments. To access the trail, there are three different starting points. We chose to hike from Piedra Blanca (Rose Valley). Just did this trail 11/27-11/29 starting from dough flat trailhead. Hot springs were fun as usual, had a herd of bighorns walk through camp. 382: Route 94 Pothole Trail 18W04.  After crossing the saddle between the two, the first drainage crossing to the west is severely washed out and not safely passable. Thought I should post a quick report on our visit to both Willet and Sespe Hot Springs. Near the end of this road, turn right at the sign that says Oak Flat is 3 miles and Dough Flat is 10 miles. I went back just to the condor sanctuary area and this is nice but the drive is rough also the road is gated in the winter and you drive through a oil field. I've backpacked Dough to Sespe twice and Piedra to Sespe four times, and literally just ran from the Dough Flat gate (2.4 miles before the trailhead) to Piedra this weekend as a keyswap, so I can get you pretty decent trail beta :). There was much debate surrounding how to get there after we found out the gate accessing the eastern approach via dough flats is closed (and even if open otherwise apparently unpassable unless one has a robust 4wd vehicle), so the discussion congregated upon weather to do that approach (13 mi … Cow springs is an optional campsite along the way. ... Dough flat to sespe hot springs. h20wakebum 2 years, 2 months ago Dough to Sespe. We will swim in the resplendent swimming holes of Spring, soak in the natural Sespe hot springs, and sleep beneath the sheltering stars. The 11-mile Alder Creek Trail from Dough Flat to Sespe Hot Springs is exceptionally mouthwatering. First time hiking to Sespe hot springs, this trail is definitely the road less traveled. Getting There: There's three possible hiking routes into Sespe Hot Springs — from the Piedra Blanca Trailhead to the west, Mutau Flats from the north … To finish this trek by going out through Dough Flat (27 miles one-way from trailhead), continue 5 miles from the springs to Alder Creek Camp (see trail description for Sespe Hot Springs). We showed up in Fillmore on Sat, and drove up Squaw Flat road. Parts of trail are narrow and gravelly on very steep slopes - trekking poles and sure footedness recommended. In 2011, Anna, Kevin and I spent three days exploring Sespe Gorge in the Los Padres’ Sespe Wilderness. Also saw 20 bighorn sheep at the springs. If those distances intimidate you, do … The Hot Springs Trail: Official Guidebook $50 and has the whole trail California to Idaho Or you can buy the individual sections like I did The Coast Connect Trail: From Santa Barbara to the Sierras (The Hot Springs Trail) (Volume 1) $12 The High Sierra Hot Springs Trail: Thru-Soaking the Sierra Nevada (The Hot Springs Trail) (Volume 2) $12 A roadless wonder in California's Los Padres Wilderness. It was an all day endeavor and honestly, I barely made it. It all adds up to limitless possibilities for trekking in an untamed land that's just a short drive from Los Angeles. Lay claim to your own California mountain valley and bask in utter solitude. Instead of starting at Dough Flat, I wanted to start at the Piedra Blanca trailhead (Lions Camp)and then camp at Willett Hot Spring, then Sespe Hot Springs, then in the Sespe Narrows, and finally camp at the Tar Creek / Sespe confluence. Beaver Camp upper Ojai Spring 2000 . Willett Hot Springs can be visited as a long 19-mile day hike, or as a more reasonable overnight backpacking adventure. Stone Corral 03-20-2010 . Sespe hiking trailheads located at – Highway 126 – Fillmore, CA Sespe Condor Sanctuary – Dough Flat Trailhead. We scrambled rocks along the Sespe, found our trail past Alder Creek and climbed 2500+ feet to finally make it to the Dough Flat. You can go to Ant camp on Agua Blanca Creek like we did a few weeks ago. Major tributaries include the Lion Canyon, Hot Springs Canyon, Timber, West Fork Sespe and Little Sespe Creeks, although over 30 creeks and springs nourish it. Named for the Spanish padres who established a network of missions along California’s southern and central coasts, the Los Padres National Forest is the second-largest National Forest in the state, encompassing approximately 1,950,000 acres — nearly half of which is federally-designated wilderness. Set up camp. Unlike most waterways in the United States, Sespe Creek still flows undammed and crystal clear through one of the nation's largest roadless areas, the 220,000-acre Sespe Wilderness in Los Padres National Forest. Sespe Hot Springs via Alder Creek is a 35.7 kilometer out and back trail located near Maricopa, California that features hot springs and is rated as difficult. Nighttime temps were probably about 50 F. Hot springs were enjoyable. I definitely would recommend Piedra Blanca over Dough Flats. This is a narrow, rough road that is traveled by large oil trucks. A short bushwhack away from the lazy-flowing Sespe leads into Hot Springs Canyon and a sulfur-scented nirvana. Wesweswes and I chatted about it, and settled on visiting the Sespe hot springs from Dough Flat. Tuesday, April 16 | Hike out of the wilderness at Dough Flat (near Fillmore, CA) and shuttle back to the Ojai Foundation by 3:30 pm to retrieve vehicles. The Ojai Ranger District has a useful PDF describing the various trails. Hike north to the first trail junction at 2.5 miles. Sespe Hot Springs at its source produces water upwards of 160 degrees Fahrenheit. User fee: $5 per day/per vehicle, $30 per season/per vehicle; free campfire permit required. However, the final 2.5 miles to the Dough Flat, was closed off! The internet said there would be some sort of seasonal closure, but the road was open all the way to Dough Flat. It was an incredible 30-something mile hike and one of my earliest backpacking trips. Or you can make your way over to the Sespe Hot Springs from Shady Camp. Love this trail but very overgrown. A short bushwhack away from the lazy-flowing Sespe leads into Hot Springs Canyon and a sulfur-scented nirvana. The first 5 miles are enjoyable and trail is well maintained. Download the GPS track to help you find your way. Sespe Hot Springs Spring, 1½ miles northeast; Willet Hot Spring Spring, 2 miles west; San Rafael Peak Summit, 3 miles north; Mutau Flat … Sespe Hot Springs Spring, 1300 feet northwest; Cottriel Flat Plain, 1 mile south; Hot Springs Canyon Valley, 1¼ miles southeast; Sespe Wilderness Reserve, 1½ miles west; San Rafael Peak Summit, 2½ miles north; Johnston Ridge Ridge, 3 miles northwest The pools all vary in temperature so you can choose one based on your comfort level with the heat. Take I-5 north to CA 126 west; turn north in Fillmore on A Street-Goodenough Road for 141/2 jolting miles (high clearance or 4WD vehicle is recommended). DIFFICULTY RATING: Moderate; elevation, 2,225 to 3,700 feet. Water flowing in Alder Creek from Alder Camp to junction with Sespe River Trail. This is a 12-mile-one-way route on a rough trail, so it seemed like a fit. Route 89 Johnston Ridge 20W12 and Sespe Hot Springs. Myths and cactus in California: A life-filled land of sand and mountains. Extra mileage probably due to route finding when the trail follows the creek. It was pretty hot (78, 80 F) so that’s another consideration. Extra mileage probably due to route finding when the trail follows the creek. Left them so other could benefit from them. Die nächste Wegkreuzung ist 2,7 … Piedra Blanca 03-13-2010 . We chose to hike from Piedra Blanca (Rose Valley). Tar Creek forms part of the southern border of the Sespe Condor Sactuary and Dough Flat Rd forms part of its eastern boundary. Dough Flat Locality, 8 miles southeast; Howell Place Hamlet, 10 miles southwest; Rancho Grande Village, 12 miles west; Landmarks. Hiking and Backpacking Santa Barbara and Ventura fills a huge gap in coverage of … Just 0.5mi south of the campsite at 34 o 32.24'N 118 o 56.91'W and an elevation of 1840ft (10.5mi and 8hr from Dough Flat) you come to the First Squeeze, the easiest of the three narrows to negotiate. 02-20-2010 Ant Camp and the search for Saddle Skirt camp . Therefore, do not follow any trails that lead north of Tar Creek. The Alder Creek trail takes you down to the Sespe Creek. The shortest of the three is via Alder Creek Trail, a 7.5-mile trek through the wilderness that heads at Dough Flat in the Sespe Oil Fields. Hot springs were so worth it. Clocked in at 12.3 miles one way from Dough Flat Trailhead to the first hotspring at the intersection with Johnston Ridge Trail. You don’t need to hike all the way to the source of the springs or else the water is extremely hot. Someone graciously left little markers (rocks stacked on top of one another) to indicate the correct trail path. So, armed with Brennen's directions we headed out for six days of adventure on the Sespe. Hopper Canyon and Hole in the wall falls 9- 10 miles in through … Or you can take the trail to Alder Creek and Shady Camp. Park bei Dough Flat. lots of ticks. Willett Hot Springs is 9.5 miles from the trailhead and Sespe Hot Springs is 15.5 miles away. Hinweis: Die Straße kann im Winter geschlossen sein. Some sections of the trail have very steep drop offs with a very narrow trail on loose rock, not for the faint of heart. Sespe hiking trailheads located at – Highway 126 – Fillmore, CA Sespe Condor Sanctuary – Dough Flat Trailhead. Willet Hot Spring and camp: 34.575822, -119.050937. Water flowing in Sespe Creek. Sespe Hot Spring: 34.594545, -118.998812. About 20 minutes later you reach another parking lot, the Dough Flat trailhead and also the Alder Creek trailhead. If you are looking for solitude, I would recommend skipping these entirely and heading straight for Sespe. At about 10.5 miles from Dough Flat, Sespe River Trail arrives at Johnson Ridge Trail and the turn off for Sespe Hot Springs. A vigorous grassroots campaign to "Keep the Sespe Wild" led to the creek's wild and scenic designation in 1992, and the slogan is now a victory banner on Ventura County car bumpers. There is much worth saving in this southern California wilderness: sheer gorges, cool pools, hot springs, parched badlands, barren chaparral, chalky sandstone with bizarre outcroppings, aboriginal petroglyphs, pine-spattered peaks, and a variety of wildlife, including bears and bobcats. I am planning a day trip to Sespe Hot Springs in the next few weeks and would like some advice on the various routes. Clocked in at 12.3 miles one way from Dough Flat Trailhead to the first hotspring at the intersection with Johnston Ridge Trail. 373: Route 91 Bucksnort Trail 19W18. Der Weg hat wenig Schatten und kann im späten Frühling und Sommer heiß sein. You can also go down Alder Creek and take the Sespe back to Tar Creek or Devil's Gate. Highway 150 – Ojai, CA Sisar Canyon Day Hike / Road #4N15. Short answer: Piedra to Sespe is … We were attempting to access sespe creek from dough flat trail head, but got turned around just after climbing out of alder creek on the sespe river trail. CONTACT: Ojai Ranger District, 1190 E. Ojai Ave., Ojai, CA 93023; (805) 646-4348. Continue heading west and eventually trail intersect Sespe River trail. There are three possible access points for reaching the springs, but all require either a ridiculously difficult day hike or a strenuous multi-day trip. Park at Dough flat. The first 5 miles are enjoyable and trail is well maintained. We saw so many wonderful swimming holes and waterfalls, and visited both Willet and Sespe Hot Springs. Piedra Blanca 04-28-2007 . The condors know all about Chumash Wilderness, but luckily, the masses in Los Angeles don't. As ice-cream makers in Los Angeles once knew, the Cucamonga Wilderness is the essence of cool. 366: Route 90 Dough Flat to Shady Camp via Alder Creek 20W11. The water at the source is too hot for soaking, but by hiking downstream one can easily find a pool to their liking. However, the easiest (Piedra Blanca) has been closed due to fire damage since December of 2017. Basics: Sespe Hot Springs is located deep in the Sespe Wilderness. There are a few great hikes that originate at Dough Flat. There are three possible access points for reaching the springs, but all require either a ridiculously difficult day hike or a strenuous multi-day trip. Watch out for rattlesnakes! From the Piedra Blanca trailhead this same intersection is about 13.75 miles, which is why some people will choose Squaw Flat Road and the overgrown trail through Alder Creek drainage in order to save a few miles. Made it out last weekend to sespe hot springs on a 2 day backpacking trip. Clocked trail at 12.2 miles from parking lot to springs, did round trip in two days, ran into one couple each day, so if you want the road less travelled and don't mind slow going/scratches/pathfinding, this trail is for you. The trail I hiked was the Johnston Ridge trail out of Mutau. As the title says, I'm new to the backcountry backpacking thing and I'm trying to work out distances. Next trail junction is 2.7 miles. Dark, volcanic mountains soaring along the Pacific Crest make for a forbidding wilderness perfect for U.S. Marines in training -- or solitude-seeking hikers. Because of the distances involved, a visit to the hot springs … Instead of starting at Dough Flat, I wanted to start at the Piedra Blanca trailhead (Lions Camp)and then camp at Willett Hot Spring, then Sespe Hot Springs, then in the Sespe Narrows, and finally camp at the Tar Creek / Sespe confluence. Highway 150 – Ojai, CA Sisar Canyon Day Hike / Road #4N15. You can get more information from their website. DIFFICULTY RATING: Moderate; elevation, 2,225 to 3,700 feet. Keep to the left to follow Alder creek trail, and alder creek camp is in 0.6 miles. You can also go down Alder Creek and take the Sespe back to Tar Creek or Devil's Gate. In 2011, Anna, Kevin and I spent three days exploring Sespe Gorge in the Los Padres’ Sespe Wilderness. 378: Route 92 Agua Blanca 19W10. Halten Sie sich links und folgen Sie dem Alder Creek Trail. The trail from Dough Flats to Cow Springs is well defined, cared for and overall easy to follow. As i traveled north on the trail it began to show a lack of use, and became harder to follow. There were a couple of minor tree blowdowns, a self made trail around water in the original trail and the brush began to become harder to navigate through. An example is a 34.56364, -118.90896. … We did the 32 mile RT backpacking trip (with my daughter who came home from college on her spring break) from the Piedra Blanca trailhead - which was the only option (the road to the Johnson Ridge/Mutua Flat approach not yet being open). Camp 2nd night at alder creek and hike out the 3rd day 8 miles back to Dough Flat trailhead. Dough Flat Road out of Fillmore (aka Squaw Flat Rd) is closed due to reconstruction of a retaining wall. Sespe Condor Sanctuary is located in Ventura County of California state. It was an incredible 30-something mile hike and one of my earliest backpacking trips.  We attempted to cross, but the hillside is not stable and we turned around at the beginning where … Here, 190 degree water issues directly from the sandstone rock and feeds Hot Springs Creek. Lions Camp Sespe Trail 04-2008 . Elevation Profile. There appear to be 3 - Sespe Creek (Piedra Blanca), Alder Creek, Johnson Ridge. From the Piedra Blanca trailhead this same intersection is about 13.75 miles, which is why some people will choose Squaw Flat Road and the overgrown trail through Alder Creek drainage in order to save a few miles. It begins just upstream of a point where the canyon turns … Also known as Arroyo Sespe, Cespai River, Sespe River. Nearby Hiking Trails. After that there is a LOT of bushwhacking and trailfinding in the wash/creek. Secret scrambles and lakes abound in this northern California wilderness. The best wildlife stronghold in California. Seasonal Popularity. So, armed with Brennen's directions we headed out for six days of adventure on the Sespe. This is a moderate one way trail to Sespe Hot Springs in Sespe Wilderness. Trail has little shade and can be hot in late spring and summer months. The drive to Dough Flat is possible only in the driest weather and the hike down the gorge to Tar Creek Camp requires swimming skills. ($4.29 each) available from Ojai Ranger District (see address at right; make check payable to "LPIA"). You are now approaching the deep, central section of Sespe Gorge where route finding takes a little more time and effort. Ricky 1 year, 8 months ago Dough Flat to Sespe Hot Springs. trail is nice for the first 3 miles, afterwards the trail is poorly maintained and very overgrown. Sespe Trails, Tom Harrison Topographic Map. Pants and long sleeves helped combat scratches, but were uncomfortable due to the unseasonable heat. When I travel I often walk up to 15 miles in a day, though that does kill … Its heat can be felt in the stream all the way through the foot of the canyon and the floor of the campsites that dot the trail are substantially warmer than sites located near the Sespe River Trail. First 3 miles are well maintained/easy to navigate, but subsequently the trail becomes difficult to follow with tons of bushwhacking. Willett Hot Springs is the first spring you will hit, and it marks the halfway point to Sespe. The other access points are Dough Flat and Mutau Flat. not many good places to camp. So if you are planning a trip to that part of the Forest be sure to plan on an extra 8miles of road hiking/biking before you get to the trailhead. At about 10.5 miles from Dough Flat, Sespe River Trail arrives at Johnson Ridge Trail and the turn off for Sespe Hot Springs. The next stretch continues ½ to the signed trail junction for McDonald Cabin, then switchbacks 7 miles up to Dough Flat (see trail description for the Indian Cave ). We hiked in in two days and out in one (7 hours with a 1 hour lunch). Or you can make your way over to the Sespe Hot Springs from Shady Camp. Plenty of creek crossing throughout. Sespe Trails, Tom Harrison Topographic Map. A GPS device is recommended (we used Gaia). Camp 2nd night at alder creek and hike out the 3rd day 8 miles back to Dough Flat trailhead. Dough Flat: 34.480807, -118.916874. Otherwise, use Piedra Blanca. MAPS:Overview of Sespe/Ojai District Trails ($1.07), USGS quadrangle Devils Heart Peak, and Los Padres National Forest Map ($4.29 each) available from Ojai Ranger District (see address at right; make check payable to "LPIA"). Sespe hot springs are 5.2 miles from Alder creek camp. Behind the forbidding name lies California's glacier-polished playground. Sespe Devils Gate 06-01-2008 . Hike north 2.5 miles to first trail junction. Piedra Blanca to Sespe Hot Springs. Hopper Canyon and Hole in the wall falls 9- 10 miles in through a winding canyon to a few large waterfalls. Keep left, following Alder creek trail. We got word this past weekend that the closure is 8miles before you get to Dough Flat. There’s not a water source for about 6 miles in. The trail is primarily used for hiking, camping, nature trips, and backpacking. New to backpacking, want to do my first overnight, thinking Dough Flat to Sespe Hot Springs? On the street of Dough Flat To communicate or ask something with the place, the Phone number is (805) 646-4348. Cow Springs ist ein optionaler Campingplatz auf dem Weg. In fact, my first ever real hike in Cali started from Lockwood Valley, where we were dropped off at Johnston Ridge, hiked down to the Sespe Hotsprings and camped there for the night. Be very cautious as you continue on to the parking area at Dough Flat. WHERE: The Alder Creek trailhead is only 75 miles northwest of Los Angeles, but allow 21/2 hours driving time for traffic and bumpy back roads. They came in handy. © 2021 Pocket Outdoor Media Inc. All Rights Reserved. North of Tar Creek and west of Dough Flat Rd is in the Condor Sactuary where public entry is not allowed. I tossed off my backpack on the switchback because I was too weak, and that's when I was strong. Scenery is beautiful - esp with fall colors on cottonwoods & sycamores. GPS recommended - VERY easy to lose the trail without it. 2nd day trip to sespe hot springs 8 miles round trip. TRAILS: There are 18 trails offering a total of 136 miles of hiking. Or you can take the trail to Alder Creek and Shady Camp. ***I've been back here before. The Ojai Ranger District has a useful PDF describing the various trails. Wandern Sie 2,5 Meilen nach Norden bis zur ersten Wegkreuzung. Water flowing in Sespe Creek. 2nd day trip to sespe hot springs 8 miles round trip. Sespe Hot Springs are the least developed of the hot springs and perhaps the most impressive. 1. The 11-mile Alder Creek Trail from Dough Flat to Sespe Hot Springs is exceptionally mouthwatering. Several miles were pushing through thick overgrowth. Some parts going down the mountain before reaching alder creek had trees fallen over the main trail. Basics: Sespe Hot Springs is located deep in the Sespe Wilderness. Set up camp. Sespe Hot Springs offers a difficult, but rewarding hike. posted by Howard Esteban @ 6:23 AM 0 Comments. These hot springs are frequented by day hikers, and are often overcrowded and grimy due to the algae that grows in the man-made collection basin. You can go to Ant camp on Agua Blanca Creek like we did a few weeks ago. Sespe Hot Springs 10-1999 . Ishi Wilderness trails run through stream-carved canyons, past stunning vistas, back to gold rush days. I've backpacked Dough to Sespe twice and Piedra to Sespe four times, and literally just ran from the Dough Flat gate (2.4 miles before the trailhead) to Piedra this weekend as a keyswap, so I can get you pretty decent trail beta :). Sespe Creek receives most of its rainfall between January and April, and furnishes 40% of the water flowing in the Santa Clara River. At trail intersection with Johnson ridge trail you will head north (right) and follow for a couple miles to hot springs. Note: The road may be gated during the winter. Overall, I’d take a different route to arrive to the hot springs because of the extensive bushwhacking which cut up my arm and legs as well as the difficulty navigating the trail. There are a few great hikes that originate at Dough Flat. I tried going via the Alder Creek trail from Dough Flat. 379: Route 93 Buck Creek 20W01 18W01 and 19W05. There’s a little palm tree oasis, I would say if you walk past that area the water will likely to too hot to comfortably lay in. About 8 miles in there’s an area that is very narrow with crumbly rock that is precarious to hike through so be aware of that. You’re going to need a GPS, we got lost plenty of times. Thank you to whomever left the sleeping pads at alder creek camp! I love Sespe Hot Springs (did the Piedra Blanca Trail last time), figured I'd try a new trail. Got word this past weekend that the closure is 8miles before you get to Dough Flat to Shady.... Run through stream-carved canyons, past stunning vistas, back to Tar forms! Mountain before reaching Alder Creek and take the trail to Alder Creek camp – Highway 126 – Fillmore, Sisar.: Sespe Hot Springs `` LPIA '' ) fork ) and follow for a forbidding Wilderness perfect U.S.... Weekend that the closure is 8miles before you get to Dough Flat trailhead to the first you. 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