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Explore, Enjoy and Protect the Planet

Sierra Club Outings and Events

[Outings]Chapter Outings are open to all members and the general public. Outings range in difficulty from easy to very strenuous. If you are not sure, please contact the leader to see if the hike is appropriate for you.

Transportation - The Sierra Club encourages the use of carpools to all events. However, the Sierra Club Outings Leader cannot assign riders or arrange carpools. Each individual is responsible for his/her own transportation to and from the trailhead or other event area.

Suggestions - If you have suggestions for hikes or outdoor activities, questions about the Chapter's outing policies or would like to be an outings leader, call or email Joe Morris (805-549-0355), or the Chapter Office at 805-543-8717. Outings Leaders please get your hikes in by the 10th of each month for the next month's Santa Lucian.

To add another group's activities to this list, contact Joe Morris.





March 2015


Mon, Mar. 2nd, 10 a.m. Valley and Islay Creek Hike. Identify a dozen wildflower species on a scenic two-mile loop hike, 250 ft. elevation gain, in Montana de Oro State Park. Meet at Spooner Ranch House, 2.5 miles past park entrance. Leader: Vicki Marchenko, 528-5567 or

Sat., Mar. 7th, 8:30 a.m. E. Cuesta Ridge to Lopez Canyon Trail. Walk on Mt. Lowe Rd. (E. Cuesta Ridge) 4.6 miles from gate near highway, then down Lopez Canyon Trail as far as we feel comfortable, returning the same way. Some trailside poison oak present. Expect to be out all day unless you wish to turn back early. Meet at Santa Rosa Park in SLO to carpool to the top of the grade. If you are from North County, you can meet us at the gate at about 8:45. Bring lunch and water. Leader: Carlos Diaz-Saavedra, 546-0317

Sun., Mar. 8th, 10 a.m. Trekking-Pole Hike at Johnson Ranch Hike to model the techniques and benefits of using trekking poles, 2.2 miles, 150 ft. gain. Meet at trailhead, located just after lower Higuera goes under Hwy 101 and becomes Ontario Rd. Need to confirm beforehand with Leader: David Georgi, 458-5575 or

Sun., Mar. 22nd, 2 p.m. Historic Walk: Victorian-Age San Luis Obispo
. Guided stroll past 21 stately, century-old homes and churches in the Old Town Historic District, SLO's former "Nob Hill." See residences of past mayors, newspaper editor, and founder of Cal Poly. Eavesdrop on the lives of the newly rich who dominated SLO in its horse-and-buggy days. Duration about 1 1/2 hrs. Meet in front of Jack House, 536 Marsh St. Leader: Joe Morris, 549-0355

Tues., Mar. 24th, 7-9 p.m. Bimonthly Meeting: "Ten Best SLO County Hikes You've Probably Missed" Tonight, meet one of our veteran chapter outings leaders, David Georgi, who in his retirement years has now hiked several hundred trails in our county. He will recount the best of the ones that have been unfairly neglected by those stuck in weekend ruts traipsing another time up Bishop Peak or doing the Laguna Lake loop. This evening's slides and descriptions will open your eyes to some surprising natural wonders nearby, from shore to summit---just in time for the best part of hiking season. Join us! Location: Steynberg Gallery, 1531 Monterey St., SLO. Info: Joe Morris, 549-0355


April 2015


Wed., Apr. 8th, 10 a.m. Los Osos Plant Walk. On an easy one-mile walk through a unique ancient oak forest, identify dozens of wildflowers and native plants. Meet in parking lot of Los Osos Oaks Reserve, on Los Osos Valley Rd., across from Eto Rd. Leader: Vicki Marchenko, 528-5567 or

Fri.-Sun., Apr. 10th-12th. Carrizo Plains Car Camp and Hike. Car camp (no charge) at Selby Camp. Saturday 9 a.m., carpool to Caliente Ridge for out-and-back, all-day hike to Caliente Peak with views of wildflowers. This is a strenuous hike of 16 miles, 1200 ft. gain, but option of going part-way and returning. Bring your own food, water, and needed camping gear. Do call leader if first time in this area: Carlos Diaz-Saavedra, 546-0317.

Fri-Mon., April 10th-13th. Mojave National Preserve Outing. Meet Friday noon at Amboy Crater for hike up crater and lunch. Primitive camping Friday night near Granite Pass. Saturday, hike at Kelso Dunes, and Sunday visit Kelso Depot and lava tube, with camping at Midhills campground. Monday, option of hiking to Cima Dome on the way out. All hikes are moderate. Saturday night, we will have a potluck. No services in the preserve. Contact leader: Carol Wiley 760-245-8734 or for more information. Mojave Group/CNRCC Desert Committee.

Sat., April 11th, 10 a.m. SLO Historical Walk: San Luis Cemetery. Guided stroll past gravesites of famous pioneers like Angel, Murray, Sinsheimer, and Civil-War vets, plus the "old potters field" for indigents and the landmark pyramid. Learn the compelling stories of the 19th-century founders of San Luis Obispo. Duration about 1 1/2 hrs. Meet in south parking lot adjacent to the pyramid, 2890 S. Higuera St. Leader: Joe Morris, 549-0355.

Sun., April 12th, 10 a.m. Trekking-Pole Hike at Johnson Ranch. "Polecats" dedicated to leading local Sierra Club day hikes and modeling the benefits of using trekking poles. Hike through Johnson Ranch, 2.2 miles, 150 ft. elevation change. Trailhead located after lower Higuera goes under Hwy 101, becoming Ontario Rd. Need to confirm beforehand with Leader: David Georgi, 458-5575 or

Sat., April 18th, Machesna Wilderness Hike, 8 a.m. All-day outing, strenuous, 12-15 mile hike, 2400-3400 ft. gain from American Canyon campground to pond and Machesna Mt. cutoff, then down Coyote hole and descending Machesna. Bring lunch, plenty of water, snacks, and dress for the weather. Meet at the Pacific Beverage Company in Santa Margarita. Advance registration required, not for beginners. For details, call Leader: Gary Felsman: 473-3694.

Sat.-Sun., Apr. 25th-26th Service in Carrizo Plains National Monument. Saturday, remove fencing to facilitate movements of pronghorn antelope. Sunday hike in Carrizo Range or other popular viewing area. Leader: Craig Deutsche, 310-477-6670 or CNRCC Desert Committee


Fri.-Sun., May 1st-3rd. Manzanar/Lone Pine Lake Trip. Creekside camp in high desert near Lone Pine. Six-mile hike, moderate hike from Whitney Portal to Lone Pine Lake on Saturday, followed by happy hour, potluck, and campfire. Sunday caravan to Manzanar, WW II Japanese internment camp and museum near Lone Pine. Group size limited. Send $8 per person, plus email, phone no., sase, and rideshare preferences to Leader: Lygeia Gerard, P.O. Box 721039, Pinon Hills, CA 92372, 760-868-2179 or Mojave Group/CNRCC Desert Committee.

Sat., May 2nd, 7:30 a.m. Santa Lucia Trail to Pimkolam Junipero Serra Peak. Very strenuous, 12-mile out-and-back hike, 3300 ft. gain from Indian Station trailhead in Los Padres. Pass through oak and pine forest, meadow to summit. Poison oak on trail. Bring plenty of water, snacks, and lunch, and dress for the weather. Meet at rideshare point at Las Tablas Rd in Templeton, west of Hwy 101, then 90" carpool to trailhead. Bring ID, vehicle registration, and proof of insurance for passage through Ft. Hunter Liggett. Extreme heat cancels. Need to confirm beforehand with Leader: Chuck Tribbey, 441-7597


Ventana Wilderness Alliance Trail Crew Opportunities

Trail Crew Volunteers are needed for work in the Ventana and Silverpeak Wilderness Areas. If interested or to get more information contact Dave Knapp, Trail Crew Leader at



Hiking With Other Organizations

In addition to outings sponsored by the Santa Lucia Chapter, you may want to contact other organizations who offer outings which complement those listed here.

The Central Coast Natural History Association (772-2694) offers docent-led walks in Montana de Oro and Morro Bay State Parks.

PGE's "Pecho Coast Trail" and "Point Buchon Trail Information" offer hikes to the Port San Luis Lighthouse and other areas around Diablo Canyon. Check the PGE website for more details

The Morro Coast Audubon Society offers many bird watching outings.

The Ventana Chapter of the Sierra Club regularly leads outings in the Los Padres National Forest, Big Sur, Arroyo Seco and Big Basin Area.

The Los Padres Chapter of the Sierra Club leads outings in Santa Ynez Valley, Santa Barbara County and Ventura County.

The Ventana Wilderness Alliance hosts service trips and outings in the Ventana and Silver Peak Wilderness Areas.

The City of San Luis Obispo hosts ranger-led walks around the City of San Luis Obispo.

Central Coast Concerned Mountain Bikers build trails around the County. For more information, log onto their website.

The Land Conservancy of San Luis Obispo offers guided walks on Conservancy properties.

Car Camping - The Santa Lucia Chapter of the Sierra Club has coordinated events with the SOLO Sierrans.

Desert Outings: Trips to the deserts of California and Nevada.

Sierra Nevada Trips - Contact the Tehipite Chapter of the Sierra Club. They lead many outings including backpacking, cross-country skiing, hikes, and more.

Sierra Club Lodges and Huts - The Sierra Club has several lodges throughout California, open at different times during the year. This is a great chance to make new friends within the Club. Rates are lower than conventional lodging. For more information check the Sierra Club Lodges Homepage.

Exploring On Your Own - If you would like to strike out on your own, be sure to check out the Sierra Club Trail Guides for San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, and Monterey Counties.

E-mail List. The Santa Lucia Chapter maintains an email list to announce upcoming outings. If you would like to add your name, send an e-mail to Gary Felsman.

Adding Groups: To add another group's activities/trips to this list, contact Joe Morris.



Seller of travel registration information: CST 2087766-40.
Registration as a seller of travel does not constitute approval by the State of California.

Keeping Our Trails in Good Condition

The Sierra Club is working to create a list of Trail Watch Volunteers to maintain and report on trail conditions throughout our area. For more information contact Gary Felsman at 805-473-3694.

Photographs and Material on this Website are:
Copyrighted© 1994 -2010 by Gary Felsman and the Santa Lucia Chapter of the Sierra Club

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Explore, Enjoy and Protect - Santa Lucia Chapter hike in Machesna Wilderness
Machesna Wilderness hike
April 2002
Photo by Gary Felsman