Romero Canyon Road Professional Reviews and Guides
"The Romero Canyon Trail follows Romero Creek up a narrow, secluded, shady canyon past pools and a waterfall. The hike returns on scenic Romero Canyon Road, an old fire road overlooking the canyon and coastline."
--Robert Stone, Day Hikes around Santa Barbara (Day Hike Books).
"Romero Canyon is the most easterly of the delightful Santa Ynez Mountain trails back of Santa Barbara. Oaks and sycamores shade a year-round creek and a tranquil path. One meaning of romero in Spanish is “pilgrim” and pilgrims of several levels of hiking ability will enjoy a walk through Romero Canyon. Families with small children will enjoy sauntering along its lower creekside stretches. More serious hikers will utilize fire roads to make a moderately graded loop through the canyon, while hikers in top form will trek all the way to Camino Cielo, which offers sweeping views from the crest of the Santa Ynez Mountains."
--Cheri Rae & John McKinney, Walk Santa Barbara (The Trailmaster).
"Romero Road has become a popular bicycle route. One of the few front range trails that is rideable uphill, it provides a good route to the Santa Barbara backcountry with connections to the major roads and trails. Since most of this trail is within 3 miles of the beach, the views south over the coast to the ocean and the Channel Islands are especially good. The south-facing slopes provide little shade but ocean breezes moderate the high temperatures."
--Delaine Fragnoli, Mountain Biking California's Central Coast Best 100 Trails (Fine Edge Productions).
"This out-and-back, 13.8-mile round-trip is an uphill workout. The climb to the turnaround point is long and moderately difficult. The road is steep for the first half-mile and then moderate after the second creek crossing. The return is fast and technically demanding. Romero Road is unmaintained and has been closed to motor vehicles since the 1970s. at times it seems like a road, and at other times it narrows to a singletrack trail. The singletrack sections are generally rough with loose and embedded rocks. The dirt road sections are in fair condition with some loose rocks. Excellent ocean views are a bonus as you grind it out to reach the top."
--David Story, Laurie & Chris Leman, Mountain Bike! Southern California (Menasha Ridge Press).
"The steady climb up the Romero Canyon Road offers dramatic views of the Pacific Ocean and coastline, as well as a rewarding panorama of the magnificent northern mountain ranges when you get to the top of the course. Early portions of the climb are under canopies of shrubbery and feature seasonal wildflowers. The course is rocky in some areas. East Camino Cielo, a paved road, is at the top in case you want to shorten the run and make it a point-to-point course. On a clear day, bring a camera to this Santa Barbara favorite."
--Stan Swartz, Jim Wolff & Samir Shahin, 50 Trail Runs in Southern California (The Mountaineers Books).
"Located in Montecito, a few exits south of Santa Barbara. Highlights: This happens to be one of our favorite trails, primarily because one of us proposed to his wife while standing on the bluffs overlooking the beautiful Pacific Ocean. The trail has rainforest-like qualities and majestic views looking over Santa Barbara. Hazards: On your way down, beware of up-hill riders and watch your speed over some gnarly technical sections."
--Mark Ross & Brad Fine, Mountain Biking Southern California (Falcon Guides).
"This fairly strenuous transect of Romero Canyon climbs 3.5 miles along the lush riparian Romero Trail, topping out at the east end of Camino Cielo Road, and then makes a long S-shaped drop back to the bottom of the canyon."
--Craig R. Carey, Hiking and Backpacking Santa Barbara and Ventura (Wilderness Press).
"Romero Trail has become a popular bicycle route. One of the few front range trails which is rideable uphill, it provides a good route to the Santa Barbara backcountry with connections to the major roads and trails. Since most of this trail is within 3 miles of the beach, the view south over the coast to the ocean and the Channel Islands is especially good. The south-facing slopes providing little shade, but ocean breezes moderate the high summer temperatures."
--Delaine Fragnoli & Don Douglass, Mountain Biking Southern California's Best 100 Trails (Fine Edge Productions).
"This favorite local route begins with a short trip up a dirt access road before heading off the main trail onto a shaded singletrack. Follow the creek for a 2-mile uphill workout before merging back with the dirt road and returning on a long, meandering downhill with panoramic views of the Pacific.Initially developed by the Chumash Indians as a means of obtaining food and trade from over the mountain in the Santa Ynez Valley, the Romero Canyon Trail currently encompasses both a singletrack trail that follows the creek and a wide, flat, dirt access road that winds through the canyon above the creek."
--Bryn Fox, Best Easy Day Hikes Santa Barbara (Falcon Guides).
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