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Little Pine to Upper Oso

Average Rating:    (4 of 5)

No. of Reviews: 24

Fire road climb to Happy Hollow campground is 10 gruelling miles. Turn left into Happy Hollow and ride for about 1 mile to trailhead on right. Rest and eat an energy bar, you deserve it after that grind! Rested? Head out on the trail. At first there will seem to be 2 options: stay right. Then descend for a few hundred yards; at first gradual, then a little more technical. Intermediate riders will do fine, beginners might consider walking the last section. At the bottom of the 1 mile initial descent there is a 3-way fork. GO LEFT to "Upper Oso"- 5 miles. This is a fun rolling singletrack with beautiful views of the valley below and the fire road you climbed up on. Take time to get a few snapshots to show your envious friends who missed out! The trail is predominantly narrow singletrack requiring good working brakes. You will be testing your braking endurance since there are very few opportunities to "let it all hang out". (Unless you're an advanced rider.) The penalty for losing your line is anything from a tumble down the hillside to bouncing off of a shale ledge. There are several switchbacks, rocky outcroppings, and sketchy, narrow and loose areas to test your meddle. At end of trail, ride out on the same fire road you rode in on and descend about 1.5 miles back to the start. Now grab a cold one out of the cooler in your vehicle (you did bring one, didn't you?), pull out the lawnchair and relax. GREAT RIDE, Whad'nit?!
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Latitude
34.53965157244901
Longitude
-119.80144500732422
Trail Directions
101 fwy to Santa Barbara. North on hwy 154 towards Lake Cachuma. Over bridge and right on Paradise Rd. Go to Upper and Lower Oso campgrounds (follow signs). GET ADVENTURE PASS to avoid ticket either at Ranger's Station along the way or at campsite! Park at Upper Oso. Start ride on fire road behind gate. Bring plenty of water! - more than 100 oz in the heat!
Trail Length
17.6 miles
Trail Level
Intermediate
Trail Type
Singletrack & Fire Roads
City/County
Santa Barbara
   


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Reviews 1 - 5 (24 Reviews Total) View All | Next 5

Review Date
November 4, 2012

Overall Rating
 1 of 5

Aerobic Difficulty
 5 of 5

Technical Difficulty
 4 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Ridden Once

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Reviewed by: Josh M ,  Cross Country Rider

Summary:
I have no idea how this trail has been rated so highly. Perhaps there aren't many options in the SB area. Basically, it's a 10 mile exposed climb on a hot dirt road followed by 7 miles of disjointed and uninteresting "singletrack". After 2 hot hours of climbing I was expecting some fun on the downhill. Instead I found myself looking for ways to get back on to the road. The trail had not flow and areas of gravel erosion barriers that ruin any flow. There is total of about half of a mile of good trail out of the 7 miles.

The trail has potential but it doesn't get enought tires to make it worthwhile. The park staff was great and the scenery was nice but not nice enough to come back.

Recommended Route:
Rode it as described.

Other recommended trails in the same area:
I'd love to know if there are any.



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Review Date
June 25, 2010

Overall Rating
 1 of 5

Aerobic Difficulty
 5 of 5

Technical Difficulty
 4 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Ridden Once

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Reviewed by: fee fi foes ,  Cross Country Rider

Summary:
Drove 2 hours to Santa Barbara after hearing that Little Pine was the best s/t ride in the area. What a disappointment. After a mind-numbing climb on fire road for 11mi and 3200', we were treated with over-grown s/t that was in poor riding shape (beat down by horses when it was wet) that had no real flow to it. I can't remember the last time I was on s/t wishing the ride would end - but this was it. I will say the last 1.5 miles of s/t before reconnecting with the fire road was good - better flow and a few fun tech sections. Scenery was great, but similar to most backcountry mtn rides.

Once was enough - even if they buffed it out, I'll take a pass. The s/t descent was far from payout after the fire road climb.

Recommended Route:
Don't recommend the trail no matter the option considered.

Other recommended trails in the same area:
I hope there are others in the area - this place is far too nice to host only this trail ride. However, if this truly is the gem in SB, stick to surfing.....



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Review Date
June 12, 2004

Overall Rating
 4 of 5

Aerobic Difficulty
 4 of 5

Technical Difficulty
 3 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Once a year

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Reviewed by: dm_93110 ,  Weekend Warrior

Summary:
NOTICE:
Be very careful after leaving Happy Hollow. Some people have turned to the right at the 3 way fork (after the first somewhat steep rocky technical downhill section). You'll want to go to the LEFT and come back across the face of Little Pine Mtn.

Recommended Route:
Stay left after first steep downhill section.

Other recommended trails in the same area:
Angostura Road to Mercury Mine
Tequepis Trail to Hwy 154



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Review Date
July 2, 2003

Overall Rating
 4 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Every few months

Visitors rate this review
5.00 of 5, 2.00 votes

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Reviewed by: Jay Dubb , from Costa Mesa

Summary:
This is for the riders that want a longer day on the bike. The climb up the fire road is pleasant. The Buckhorn trail is really cool with creek crossings & grassy meadows. The climb back up the Camusa connector(middle camusa?) is not a bad climb back to the Fire road. Retrace your route, however continue past buckhorn trail, up to happy hollow and enjoy the fun downhill.
As for climbing the trail,...this trail can be busy on the weekends. It makes good sense to avoid going up the trail when there are lot's of trail users coming down. I do however believe that this is one of the best single tracks to climb if you are into steep loose (perhaps a bit of walking) and challenging climbs. Let's all hope that you are riding down the trail in such a manner that if you encounter another rider coming up (or hikers, horses, wash-outs, fallen logs, etc) you can react properly & safely!!!

Recommended Route:
Up the fire road, down buckhorn trail, up the connector, up to the top of the peak & down the santa cruz back to upper oso.

Other recommended trails in the same area:
O.K., let me let loose just a bit on some of the posts below (can't help but stir up the waters a bit!)



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Review Date
October 28, 2002

Overall Rating
 4 of 5

Ridden Trail:
Ridden Once

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Reviewed by: Damon Mann , from Mission Viejo, CA USA

Summary:
From a 210 lb clysdales view: The climb is long and fairly steep at 10 miles approx 2-1/2-3hrs w/ good terrain. Enjoy it if the weather is cool. The 6 mile single track is outstanding!!! has a little bit of everyting rocky areas, carving turns, loose shale, hardpan you name it. If you ever get a chance to ride here definetly do it. A similar ride, but not as epic are blue jay at Ortega Highway. I would recommend this ride for at least an intermediate or above rider. Some tips I would like to suggest:
Pay attention,the trail is narrow
Be curtious of hikers on the decent
ride within your abilities
if you go off the edge good luck getting back

Recommended Route:
Lower Oso to Upper Oso Trail

Other recommended trails in the same area:
Not in the area, but I would recommend in the Orange County Area: Blue Jay, Old Camp, & Silverado Canyon



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Reviews 1 - 5 (24 Reviews Total) View All | Next 5
 


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