Happy Camp Canyon Fire Road

Ventura County, California 91362

Distance1.8mi
Elevation Gain1,056ft
Trailhead Elevation1,537ft
Top2,135ft
Elevation Min/Max1537/2135ft
Elevation Start/End1537/1537ft

Happy Camp Canyon Fire Road

Happy Camp Canyon Fire Road is a hiking, biking, and horse trail in Ventura County, California. It is 1.8 miles long and begins at 1,537 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is 3.7 miles with a total elevation gain of 1,056 feet. This trail connects with the following: Middle Ridge Fire Road.

Happy Camp Canyon Fire Road Professional Reviews and Guides

"Happy Camp Canyon nuzzles in a crease between the long, rounded ridge called Big Mountain, just north of Simi Valley, and Oak Ridge, a taller parallel ridge to the north. These ridges and plenty more, like the Santa Monica Mountains, are caterpillarlike, parallel segments of the Transverse Ranges, which stretch from Santa Barbara County in the west to San Bernardino County to the east."

"Happy Camp Canyon nuzzles in a crease between the long, rounded ridge called Big Mountain, just north of Simi Valley, and Oak Ridge, a taller parallel ridge to the north. These ridges and plenty more, like the Santa Monica Mountains, are caterpillar-like parallel segments of the Transverse Ranges, which stretch from Santa Barbara County in the west to San Bernardino County to the east."

"Happy Camp Canyon Park, north of Moorpark in the Santa Susana Mountains, was once part of a cattle ranch. The canyon is sheltered by Oak Ridge to the north and Big Mountain to the south. The Happy Camp Trail follows and abandoned ranch road through a shady, forested canyon."

Happy Camp Canyon Fire Road Reviews

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1/8/2020
This was a great hike with views of some pretty spetacular rock formations and some good city skylines. The guide may over rate this hike as a moderately strenuous hike. It is more a low intermdiate, that should be possible for almost anyone.
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1/10/2011
First mile of the trail is not very intersting. Once you get to the gate and hike through the canyon there is more vegetation. The hike up to big mountain is steep but pretty short. There are very deep ruts. Overall this hike is fairly easy. Walking back on the ridge there are fantastic views of Simi and Moorpark. Since we did this in January all the hills are beautifully green.
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12/23/2009
Wonderful trail. You are bagging a peak, but it is not a singleminded ardous ascent. There are alternating vistas of the Pacific and inland side of the mountains as well as interesting rock formations and tunnels of vegetation
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12/15/2009
nice trail, nice hike and good views. we hiked on a saturday and it was a bit more crowded then i am used to coming from washington state.
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3/12/2008
Regarding Gene's report - the Iron Ranger is only at the west entrance off Broadway. that is used mostly by horses and trailers. You can access the park free by entering at the south. Exit the 118 freeway at Princeton and go north to Campus drive and turn left - west. Follow this around to the entrance for the golf course - go in there and on back. Their is a free dirt parking area or if plenty of room park on the golf course asphalt lot. The trails while sandy in some areas are in pretty good condition. Some trails have been freshly recut in new paths because the existing trails are deeply washed and rutted (from recent heavy rains). With the 8-10 inches of rain we have had the park is beautiful in mid March. quite a few poppies and other flowers blooming. I expect flower bloom will increase in next 2 weeks. Saw 3 coyotes, hawks and many other birds, the usual squirrels and rabbits. Lots of wildlife. Tom
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11/19/2006
I wanted to add that there is a $3.00 parking fee for the Iron Ranger. Also, some of the trail is in deep sand which makes it a little more difficult for hikers.
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3/13/2006
Well,since you asked for a trail report here it is...from the view of an equestrian.Happy Camp recently had the fire roads smoothed over by heavy equipment.So I think it''s pretty good going for a bike and good on foot.The fire road (near the spring) that was washed out has been restored and brings you down into the sandy riverbed just beyond the spring.It''s deep for a horse-I think you would want to walk your bike across.Once across the riverbed you are back on firmer ground.I was told that the connecting trail from Big Mountain down into the valley was not scraped because there are gas lines there.I haven''t been down that part of the loop in a year.Narrow deep crevices make it tricky for most.
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6/25/2005
Let me say first of all that this would have been a five star hike except I is was not ready for the large number of hungry flies, tenacious in their grip. Whining aside, the drive to the trail head was wonderful. The winding Yerba Buena road necked down to old German town sized lanes but revealed a lush vegetation I had not seen in other parts of the Santa Monica mountains. After the first 0.7 miles the trial splits to the scenic route and the fast track up. We decided on the fast track and, other than the hungry flies, were so glad we did. The views of Lake Sherwood and the ocean and Conejo Valley to Camarillo are beautiful and the exposure to balance rock and the other wind etched rocks was magnificent. The final 100 yards up are on 100% rock the rest of the way up so make sure you have good climbing shoes on. The view from the top was extra special with the cool ocean winds sliding up the peak being the icing on the cake. Good work out, great views. Dave Bell
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Happy Camp Canyon Fire Road Photos

Trail Information

Ventura County
Nearby City
SMMC
Local Contacts
USGS 7.5-min Simi
Local Maps

Activity Feed

Jul 2018