Santa Lucia Ranger District

Nathan Rezeau - District Ranger

1616 N. Carlotti Dr.
Santa Maria, CA 93454
VOICE: (805) 925-9538
FAX: (805) 961-5781
TTY/TDD: (805) 925-7388 

Hours: 8:00am - 4:30pm   Monday - Friday

Email Jeff Soto for Recreation and Visitor Information

 Map and Directions to the Santa Lucia Ranger District Office

The Santa Lucia Ranger District occupies a major portion of the Coast and Transverse ranges of central California. Elevations range from sea level to 6,762 feet. Ecosystems include chaparral, oak woodland, mixed conifer, grasslands, pinyon-juniper, semi-desert scrub and riparian. The vegetation is well adapted to fire, the chaparral has a 40-60 year fire return interval. The District’s total land acreage is 538,137, of which 62,358 are private inholdings. 

The Santa Lucia provides key habitat for 75 listed threatened, endangered and sensitive plant and animal species, including the California Condor, peregrine falcon, red-legged frog, and arroyo toad. 

Popular recreation activities on the District include pleasure driving, viewing scenery, hiking, horseback riding and picnicking. Other popular pursuits include camping, backpacking, mountain biking, OHV travel, cross-country skiing and snow play, rock-climbing and hang-gliding. The Santa Lucia has 29 developed rec sites, 398 miles of hiking, horseback riding, and mountain bike trails, and 192 miles of designated trails and roads for OHV use. 

The District is home to the Garcia, Machesna, San Rafael, and Santa Lucia wildernesses, as well as the Sisquoc Wild & Scenic River. 

There are many non-recreation land uses on the District, including orchards, apiaries, roads and trails, school sites, research facilities, power generation and transmission facilities, communication sites and lines, and hydroelectric dams. 

The Santa Lucia has 19 active permits with 15,000 head months annually. The District also includes the Black Mountain Wild Horse Territory which is maintained at about 20 head. 

The Cuesta Ridge Botancial Area is located northeast of San Luis Obispo and contains many unique plant groups, including a Sargent Cypress grove. The Santa Lucia actively works with a federally recognized tribe (Santa Ynez Band of Mission Indians) as well as several organized groups. The District has 13 priority heritage assets, 11 of which are native American rock art sites, and countless cultural resources.