Subscribe Contribute Advertise Facebook Twitter Instagram Forums Newsletter
New 400 mile Condor Trail to span Los Padres NF.
Display Avatars Sort By:
Joshua S
(joshualee101) - F - M
New 400 mile Condor Trail to span Los Padres NF. on 12/14/2010 13:23:57 MST Print View

I got excited when I saw this and wanted to share.

BTW, if you do much hiking in Los Padres NF, you should take a look at this guy's personal website. He makes great maps.

Edited by joshualee101 on 12/14/2010 13:24:31 MST.

Jace Mullen
(climberslacker) - F

Locale: Your guess is as good as mine.
Condor Trail on 12/14/2010 14:57:53 MST Print View

Looks fun. I'd like to volunteer to go build some trail. Is there anyway to do that?

Hikin' Jim
(hikin_jim) - MLife

Locale: Orange County, CA, USA
Re: New 400 mile Condor Trail to span Los Padres NF. on 12/14/2010 15:10:07 MST Print View

That would be cool if they can pull it off. The problem is keeping the trail open in the Los Padres. It's such a huge National Forest, and it's (mostly) chaparral which eats trails quickly. So many of the existing trails are essentially gone, relclaimed by the brush.


Nico .
(NickB) - MLife

Locale: Los Padres National Forest
Condor Trail on 12/14/2010 18:01:53 MST Print View

The idea of the Condor Trail has been around for a while. Bryan took up the reins a couple of years ago, I think, and has really been successful at getting the word out, helping to develop the possible route(s) and ground-truthing it out in the field.

It's a lot of work and will be years in the making... It's great that the Forest Service lends it's support to the idea, but they don't have sufficient funding to maintain all the trails they have, let alone pay for adding more. Thus, the Condor Trail will likely need to rely on donations, grants and volunteer effort to make it a reality.

It will be a neat opportunity for hikers, as the "hiking season" for the Los Padres is more of the winter/spring as opposed to the summer season of the sierras, etc. That's the only time the temperatures aren't scorching, the water is more plentiful and reliable and the ticks/rattlesnakes are less numerous.

I think Bryan does occasionally set up small groups to go out and either clear trail or scout new routes. I think he's mainly working in the southern Los Padres and is looking for folks to help head up the northern sections. If interested, you could probably reach him through his website for the Condor Trail-- Some of these trips tend to pretty major bush-whacking affairs. Our entire backcountry burned in '07 and between heavy post-fire rains, mud slides and intense re-growth, some of our trails are in bad shape.

Oh, and +1 for anyone looking for a map for the southern los padres (Dick Smith and San Rafael Wildernesses), Bryan's maps are great!

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Condor Trail on 12/14/2010 18:05:16 MST Print View

Ticks, rattlesnakes, and poison oak.

What's not to love?


Nico .
(NickB) - MLife

Locale: Los Padres National Forest
PO on 12/14/2010 18:10:56 MST Print View

Ha! Forgot to mention the Poison Oak! I paint such a pleasant picture of the Los Padres...

Piper S.
(sbhikes) - F

Locale: Santa Barbara (Name: Diane)
Re: Condor Trail on 12/17/2010 11:47:27 MST Print View

I've been on a few of Bryans trips. It's always a lot of fun. It's a little heartbreaking to see how bad the trails are. But if you don't mind that, the country is beautiful and remote. Were you to thru-hike this trail it would say a lot more about your stamina and wilderness skills and tolerance for solitutde than hiking the PCT or JMT.

Hiking Malto
(gg-man) - F
Re: Re: Condor Trail on 12/17/2010 13:38:23 MST Print View

Rather than start into new trails I would love to see the existing network of trails cleared. I had a trip two weeks ago in Big Sur cut short when the trail I was on disappeared. And as far as poison oak, two trips two cases of poison oak. But absolutely lovely area.

Nico .
(NickB) - MLife

Locale: Los Padres National Forest
Condor Trail on 12/17/2010 16:01:26 MST Print View

Hi Greg,

FWIW, I think probably about 85-90% of the Condor Trail will use "existing" (I'll use the term loosely) trails, the remaining 10% or so would be where new connections need to be made between those various existing trails.

But yeah, a lot of our trails see little use and alternately get blasted by fires, doused with heavy rains and then enveloped in rapid re-growth, so they can be hard to find and/or follow at times.