Alder Creek/Murieta Juncal Road - Backpacking & Camping

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Ocean views and primitive camping make this a great place to spend a leisurely weekend.

Written by

Courtney Johnson


11.0 miles

Destination Distance From Downtown

12.0 miles


2 of 5 diamonds

Time To Complete

2 days


All Seasons

Dog Friendly


Fees Permits


Adventure Pass needed for parking; $5 per day, $30 per year

Land Website

Adventure Pass Info



This 11-mile out and back takes you to the high hills along backcountry trails for a peaceful night in the backcountry. There are waterfalls to see, plenty of woods and wildlife and nice views from the primitive camping areas. 

What Makes It Great

For a quick overnight that nonetheless is a good workout, this is a fine destination. Alder Creek itself is a pleasant stream that flows are different levels at different times of the year. There is an old sluice that runs along the trail near the backcountry campground, a relic from old mining days. The last 1.5 miles to camp (after encountering an old forest sign that incorrectly states "Alder Creek 1/2 mile") is the most rugged terrain you'll encounter. 

Who is Going to Love It

Hikers looking for a real wilderness adventure not far from Carpenteria will appreciate this scrappy hike. The camping is peaceful, though finding a flat spot could be a challenge. 

Directions, Parking, & Regulations

Begin at Murietta Juncal Road near the intersection for Romero Camuesa Road at the locked gate. You can park off to the side of the road as long as you don't block the gate. Take Murietta Juncal Road to the Franklin Trail just after you see Jameson Lake/Reservoir on the left. Follow the Old Franklin Trail past the Alder Creek Campground to Camino Cielo/Ocean View. There isn't any signage for Camino Cielo/Ocean View. You can see the ocean, oil rigs and islands from the top. Follow the path back to Alder Creek Campground for an evening of primitive camping. 

You will need an adventure pass to legally park. 

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Alder Creek/Murieta Juncal Road

Carpinteria, CA,
34.487323, -119.50516

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