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Summer Solstice Nature Hike on Pine Mountain

June 22 @ 9:00 am 4:00 pm

Above: The Channel Islands seen from Pine Mountain. Photo: Erika Klohe


If you’ve ever walked or hiked with me, you’ve probably heard me rave about the special beauty of Pine Mountain. Experience it for yourself on our annual Summer Solstice Nature Hike on the Reyes Peak Trail. On Saturday, June 22, we’ll visit some of the most spectacular scenery and habitat that Ventura County has to offer just when many late spring wildflowers are blooming up there at an elevation of 7000 feet(!).  According to Craig Carey, author of Hiking and Backpacking Santa Barbara and Ventura, the Reyes Peak Trail along the northern slope of the peak is “quite simply one of the most beautiful stretches in the southern Los Padres.”

The outing will start at 9:00 a.m. with a car caravan of about 35 miles up Highway 33 from the Maricopa Plaza, (1207 Maricopa Highway, Ojai, CA 93023) to the Reyes Peak trailhead. The final 5.5 miles are on a narrow, winding paved road and the very last half-mile is dirt. Trucks or SUV’s are preferred for the last stretch but most passenger cars with high clearance can also make the drive.

We will start walking into the Sespe Wilderness from the trailhead (where there is a restroom) at about 10:30 a.m., stop for lunch (not provided) in the forest, and return to the trailhead by 3:30 p.m., arriving back at the Maricopa Plaza by 4:00 p.m. We will hike on a well-used trail through Mixed Conifer Forest habitat, stopping often to identify and discuss native plants, birds and wildlife.

This intermediate level hike is suitable for moderately experienced hikers or physically fit beginners. There will be some elevation gain and loss skirting the north side of Reyes Peak, sometimes traversing steep hillsides on a narrow trail. The total hiking distance will be about 3 miles.

PLEASE NOTE: Those with respiratory or circulatory issues possibly affected by altitude should consult with a physician before attempting this hike.

Weather and marine layer permitting, we will have panoramic views of the Cuyama Valley to the north and the Channel Islands to the south.  This hike is another in a series of backcountry walks and hikes under an Operating Permit from the U.S. Forest Service designed for guides who provide recreational and interpretive services to the public. After the hike participants will receive a detailed follow-up email including a list of all plants identified.

PLEASE NOTE: Light rain will not cancel. Heavy rain or thunderstorms will. Once you register you will receive weather updates, directions and other info about what to wear, etc. No dogs or smoking, please.

The cost for the hike is $45/person. Qualifying full-time students (13+) can attend for $35. Children 6-12 (one per adult) can attend for $25. Kids 5 and under are free (one per adult), subject to approval.

My 2021 book, Medicinal Herbs of California, will be available at the meeting place in the morning for sale and signing.



There are several ticket options. Please choose the one you qualify for.

Note: Online payment includes a PayPal fee. If you prefer, when you register you can request instructions for mailing a payment of $45/adult $35/student or $25/child as long as there is still time for mail delivery.

Cancellation policy: I will refund your payment if you notify me up to 72 hours (3 days) before the start of the event. After that I will make every effort to fill your space (and I’m usually successful) but cannot guarantee


June 22
9:00 am – 4:00 pm


Lanny Kaufer
View Organizer Website

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