Trails of

Wildwood Park and the Santa Rosa Trail

Overview

Wildwood is one area that clearly shows the volcanic past of the Conejo Valley. The rocks here are rugged, unyeilding, and frequently show on the surface of the Stagecoach Bluff and Santa Rosa Trails.

Beginning mountain bikers will like the Mesa Trail, a fire road that climbs gently over its 1 mile length. Intermediate riders and better will appreciate the several trails that descend several hundred feet into the canyon and the climbs to get out again, but novices might have to walk up to get out. The trails to the canyon are all quite steep but not technical.

After a winter rain, Wildwood turns into super-sticky mud and takes a few weeks to dry.

Map Key

Map Key

 Aerial View

The Wildwood area is difficult to show in a single 3D view partly because the canyon is quite steep with a number of trails running into it, and partly because the Santa Rosa trail extends several miles to the east and the "Western Plateau" exends several miles to the west, all the way to Camarillo.

This map is the view from the east with the Santa Rosa trail in the foreground. Click on the map to get a larger view that includes links to the trail descriptions.

The lower map is the view from the west with the Lizard Rock trail in the foreground. Click on the map to get a larger view that includes links to the trail descriptions.

Trailheads

The upper parking lot is at the west end of Avendida de Los Arboles. If the upper parking lot is full, follow the dirt road to the lower parking. For night riding, park outside the gate that is locked at sunset, next to the road.

Geocaches

Trails

[1] Santa Rosa Trail

Description At just under 4 miles, the Santa Rosa Trail isn't very long, but it presents a good workout and some great views into the Santa Rosa Valley and then into Wildwood. It parllels the ridge on the north side, overlooking the Santa Rosa Valley, then crosses over and has some switchbacks down into Wildwood. There are a number of very short volcanic rock outcroppings that are a challenge to ride across. Except for one stretch of a few hundred yards a little beyond the CLU cross, the rocks are very firmly planted in the ground and will not move.Intermediate riders might find these rocks challenging, but it's easy enough to push the bike for a few feet to get past them.

 We park at the corner of Olsen Rd and Mountclef Blvd, in a CLU lot adjacent to a playing field. We ride around the field and then towards the huge CLU cross on the hill. To extend the ride a little (and to get a taste of what is to come) we ride out the spur that ends at the nursery, have a short break and then ride back to the cross where the trail really begins. Just past the cross there is a stretch of a few hundred yards that has loose rocks and some steep sections, with cactus just off the trail. Once you get to the section that overlooks the Santa Rosa valley you are past the worst of the rocks. (However, this part gets very muddy when it rains, and since the hillside faces north, it takes a long time to dry out again.) After a long traverse of mostly gentle descents and climbs, the trail crests the ridge and starts down into Wildwood, ending at the Mesa Trail.

To get back to the cars, we usually ride the Stagecoach Bluff trail, Lizard Rock Trail to Wildwood Trail, stop for a break at Paradise Falls, then continue to Lynnmere trail which we follow to Lynn Road. From there we ride back to the parking lot on the street.

 Length (miles)

3.8

Climb (feet)

700, excluding the nursery spur

Descent (feet)

800, excluding the nursery spur

Trail Profile      Back to the Top

 


[2] Mesa Trail

Description The Mesa trail is a very easy fire road that is only 1 mile long. Most rides start on this road because it conects with the three most common routes into the canyon. It rus along parallel to the Stagecoach Bluffs trail but is much easier, so is an alternate route to the Lizard Rock Trail.

 Length (miles)

1.05

Climb (feet)

175

Descent (feet)

75

Trail Profile      Back to the Top

 


[3] Wildwood Trail
[10] Fort Wildwood Spur

Description It's pretty much impossilbe to ride in Wildwood without covering a good section of this trail. It runs from the water treatment plant at the west end to Avendida de Las Flores at the east end, following the north fork of the Arroyo Conejo. There are picnic grounds, water fountains and even bathroom facilities, and' running through the bottom of the canyon, there is lots of shade provided by giant trees. There are also several steam crossings with bridges most of the year, but they are removed in the winter so they don't get swept downstream in the storms. Our favorite place for a snack is at the picnic table next to Paradise Falls, and the prettiest part to ride is the section between Indian Creek Trail and the Ft. Wildwood spur, before it starts to climb out of the canyon and the trees thin out. In general this is an easy trail to ride and is suitable for all levels.

 

Crossing the creek between Wildwood Trail and Lynnmere Trail

 Length (miles)

2.55

Climb (feet)

550 (riding eastward from the west end)

Descent (feet)

200

Trail Profile      Back to the Top

 


[4] Stagecoach Bluff Trail
[5] Lizard RockTrail
Description
The Lizard Rock and Stagecoach Bluff trails are really quite different but they are included together here because one ends where the other starts and we usually ride them together. The Stagecoach Bluff trail runs along the rim of the canyon and overlooks the Hill Canyon water treatment plant. It doesn't involve a lot of climbing but is very rocky and best left to experienced riders. The Mesa Trail can be used to access Lizard Rock instead. In contrast, Lizard Rock trail is a nice dirt single track that starts with a very steep climb to the top that can get loose and dusty in the summer, followed by a long descent into the canyon, starting with switchbacks and ending at the Wildwood Trail. The Lizard Rock trail is too difficult for novices, but intermediate riders will have a lot of fun on it. 

Starting up Stagecoach Bluff

Winding down Lizard Rock Trail

 Length (miles)

0.75 (Stagecoach Bluff); 1.25 (Lizard Rock)

Climb (feet)

170 (Stagecoach Bluff); 230 (Lizard Rock)

Descent (feet)

100 (Stagecoach Bluff); 640 (Lizard Rock)

Trail Profile      Back to the Top

 


[6] Lower Parking Lot Road
[7] Teepee Road
[8] Moonridge Trail and [9] Indian Creek Trail

Description There are three ways down to the Wildwood Trail in the bottom of the canyon that are suitable for novice and intermediate riders. The Moonridge Trail combined with the Indian Creek trail is the only one that is a single track and it is also the prettiest, shaded as it is with trees along most of its distance. However, it has some steps and next to the creek at the bottom the trail consists of the rock banks, so there are some short sections where carrying of bikes is in order. On the other hand, the two roads are much like the photo on the right - quite steep with no shade, but generally firm and not rocky. The profile below shows that these trails are very similar in steepness, but the Lower Parking Lot Road is probably easier for getting back to the Mesa Trail only because it is shorter. From the teepee, there is a short but very steep road that goes down the hill to the east and connects to the Wildwood trail across from the Lynnmere trail. There is also a short single-track about half-way to the bottom from the teepee that connects to Paradise Falls.

You should note that the Moonridge trail is closed to bikes west of the upper parking lot.


Climbing towards the teepee on Teepee Road

 

Lower Parking Lot Road

Teepee Road

Moonridge Trail and
Indian Creek Trail

 Length (miles)

0.6

0.9

0.75

Climb (feet)

50

60

30

Descent (feet)

290

430

230

Trail Profile      Back to the Top

 


[11,12] Lynnmere Trail and spur

Description Of Starting from the west end, to get to the Lynnmere trail you have to ford a short stream (see photo) and endur a 1/3 mile climb up a fire road. From there it's pure single track and pure fun with only short climbs and descents and lots of twists and turns. We almost never ride in Wildwood without including the Lynnmere trail. The bonus is that it's equally fun in either direction.

The only trick to the Lynnmere trail is to not miss the turn onto the single track at the top of the fire road. Just before you get to the houses, there is a short wooden bridge on the left that crosses the drainage ditch and the trail continues on the other side.

 

 Length (miles)

2.5

Climb (feet)

670 (290 feet of this are on the fire road in the first 2/3 miles from the west end)

Descent (feet)

440

Trail Profile      Back to the Top

 

This page was last updated September 29, 2008

 

Thanks for looking at Steve's guide to trails in Ventura County, the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area (SMMNRA) and other locations.