Trails of

Rancho Potrero Open Space
including the western part of Rancho Sierra Vista/Satwiwa


Looking south over Rancho Potrero with Boney Mountain in the distance on the left
and homes of Dos Vientos in the foreground

Overview

The northern half of the Rancho Potrero Open Space consists of rolling grassland that ends at an east-west ridge that affords great views over these grasslands and the community of Dos Vientos to the north, and into Pt. Mugu State Park to the south. This is not a large open space so the trails here aren't very long, but it provides important interconnections between other areas. Its trails lead into Rancho Sierra Vista/Satwiwa to the east and then Pt Mugu State Park, and a short jaunt on pavement gets you to Dos Vientos trails to the north. To the west and immediately south is private property with no public access.

There are only a few official trails in this open space, but the nature of the terrain and the ajoining equestrian center has led to many unofficial trails, most of which are quite well used, including along the top of the south ridge. They are indicated by dotted brown lines on the map.

Rancho Potrero was transferred from the MRCA to COSCA around 2006. It had been purchased in 1993 by the MRCA, the city of Thousand Oaks and the CRPD, but held in trust by the MRCA.

Map Key

  Printable map (1.4 MB)

Trailheads and features

a. Main parking on Potrero Road. There are bathrooms here. Map and directions.
b. On the south side of Potrero Road. Map and directions.
c. Equestrian parking on the driveway to Rancho Sierra Vista/Satwiwa. Map and directions.
d. The old entrance on Potrero Rd at Pinehill Ave. Map and directions.
e. The main parking for Rancho Sierra Vista/Satwiwa. There are bathrooms here. Map and directions.
f. Trailheads in Dos Vientos.
z. Locked gate. Private propery beyond this point. No public access.
 

Trails

Download the GPS tracks to help you find your way. Because these trails are relatively quite short, all official trails and the unofficial South Ridge Trail are included in this one GPX file.

[1] Olympia Farms Trail

Description This old paved road leads from parking on Potrero Road to the site of the old Olympia Farms where all that is left is the foundation of some old ranch building. If you don't like using the pavement, there is an unofficial dirt path next to it until it meets Palomino Trail.

Download the GPS track to help you find your way.

Technical Rating T0

 Length (miles)

 0.6

Climb (feet)

 70 (starting at Potrero Road)

Descent (feet)

 40

Trail Profile      Back to the Top

 

 [2] Palomino Trail

Description This connects the paved Olympia Farms Trail to the Ranch Overlook Trail in Rancho Sierra Vista/Satwiwa. About 250 yards of the west end are paved where it climbs a hill to a flat area with a few big trees that makes a good lookout.

The photo at right shows the paved west section with the Olympia Farm site in the distance at the left edge.

Download the GPS track to help you find your way.

Technical Rating T2

 Length (miles)

 0.9

Climb (feet)

80 (West to east)

Descent (feet)

 170

Trail Profile      Back to the Top

 

[3] Lupine Trail

Description This short, quarter-mile long trail connects the main parking area on Potrero Road to the Grasshopper and Palomino Trails.

Download the GPS track to help you find your way.

Technical Rating T2

 Length (miles)

 0.22

Climb (feet)

 40 (North to south)

Descent (feet)

 10

Back to the Top

 

[4] Grasshopper Trail

Description This trail leads from the main parking area to the Ranch Overlook Trail in Rancho Sierra Vista/Satwiwa. Most of it runs just south of a depression that gets swampy during the rainy season.

Download the GPS track to help you find your way.

Technical Rating T2

 Length (miles)

 0.54

Climb (feet)

 10 (West to east)

Descent (feet)

 40

Back to the Top

 

[5] Edison Access Trail

Description This narrow dirt road follows the power poles along a ridgeline so it's a little more hilly than most of the other trails in this area. From the east, it starts at Pinehill Road, crosses the paved driveway to Rancho Sierra Vista/Satwiwa and ends shortly thereafter at the equestrian facility.

Download the GPS track to help you find your way.

Technical Rating T1

 Length (miles)

 0.5

Climb (feet)

 45 (West to east)

Descent (feet)

 70

Back to the Top

 

[6] South Ridge Trail

Description This unofficial trail climbs up to and then follows along the ridge that marks the highest part of this open space. As a ridgeline trail it is much steeper than the rest, and even too steep for most mountain bikers to climb, but it affords views in all directions. It connects to the Palomino Trail at both ends.

Download the GPS track to help you find your way.

Technical Rating T2.5

 Length (miles)

 0.8

Climb (feet)

 260 (East to west)

Descent (feet)

 120

Trail Profile      Back to the Top

 

[7] Ranch Overlook Trail

Description This is the westernmost trail of Rancho Sierra Vista/Satwiwa. At the north end, it connects to the Edison Access just a few feet from the driveway, and close to Potrero Road. It connects to the main Sycamore Canyon Trail at the south/east end. From the north, it's a broad doubletrack, and perhaps slightly loose. At the Palomino Trail, it narrows somewhat. The eastern third is a bit hilly and rutted, hence the T2.5 rating. Short spurs lead to the equestrian parking in the north and the main parking in the middle. There are 'Closed to Bikes' signs along the trail, but it's not clear to me where it's closed to bikes and where it's open to everybody.

Download the GPS track to help you find your way.

Technical Rating T2.5 (part is NB )

 Length (miles)

 1.0

Climb (feet)

 90

Descent (feet)

 150

Trail Profile      Back to the Top

 

[8] Rancho Sierra Vista/Satwiwa Drive (Via Goleta)

Description This paved road leads from Potrero Road to the main parking lot for Rancho Sierra Vista/Satwiwa.

Download the GPS track to help you find your way.

Technical Rating T0

 Length (miles)

 0.6

Climb (feet)

 15 (From Potroro Road to the main parking lot)

Descent (feet)

 100

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[9] Old Entrance Trail (Pinehill Ave.)

Description This gravel road was the original entrance to Rancho Sierra Vista/Satwiwa and Pt Mugu State Park before the Dos Vientos neighborhood was developed. It leads from Potrero Road at Pinehill Avenue to the main parking area. It is noticably broader south of where the Edison Access joins it.

Download the GPS track to help you find your way.

Technical Rating T0.5

 Length (miles)

 0.35

Climb (feet)

 75 (From Potrero Road to the main parking area)

Descent (feet)

 65

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 [10] Ranch Road

Description This road leads from the private property to the east of Rancho Potrero to the private property to the south, and connects to the end of the Olympia Farms Trail. There are locked gates at both ends to keep the public from continuing beyond the open space. Please respect the landowner's wishes.

Download the GPS track to help you find your way.

Technical Rating T1

 Length (miles)

 0.4

Climb (feet)

 35

Descent (feet)

 100

Trail Profile      Back to the Top

 

This page was last updated February 16, 2016

 

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