This easygoing, 2.5-mile out-and-back climbs through oak groves on a paved path, then turns into dirt singletrack within a mile. The path crisscrosses Mission Creek as it winds through the canyon. Hop or wade across the water, depending on the season, and follow the creek upstream to Seven Falls. Don’t forget to bring your swimsuit: Mission Creek cascades down step-like sandstone outcroppings, creating several warm, deep swimming holes. If you’re fortunate enough to come during or just after spring rains, take a dip in one of the upper pools. When you’re ready, turn around and retrace your steps back to the trailhead.
-Mapped by Chuck Graham
TO TRAILHEAD: From State St. and E. Los Olivos St. in Santa Barbara, CA, head northeast on E. Los Olivos St. In 0.6 mile, continue on Mission Canyon Rd. In 0.4 mile, turn right at CA 192/Foothill Rd. In 0.2 mile, turn left at Mission Canyon Rd. In 0.3 mile, continue on Tunnel Rd. In 1.1 mile, bear right to stay on Tunnel Rd. Go 500 feet to the trailhead, which is just past Spyglass Ridge Rd.