Middle Santa Ynez Campground

Area Status: Closed
This area is Closed

[image] Middle Santa Ynez Campground

Many shady sites, oak trees, close to river, no pavement. The campground is usually full on weekends during deer hunting season, mid August through late September. Big Caliente Hot Springs is 3 miles away. The last 8 miles of driving to the campground is on dirt roads.

Access to Big and Little Caliente Hot Springs and the Pendola / Upper Santa Ynez Recreation Area (Forest Road 5N12, 5N15, 5N16)

The road to access the Big and Little Caliente Hot Springs and the Pendola / Upper Santa Ynez Recreation Area consists of more than 8 miles of adobe clay roads. Higher clearance vehicles are recommended. The dirt roads are adobe clay, which becomes dangerously slippery to drive on during wet weather. For this reason, gates within the area get closed prior to wet weather events. Please check the Los Padres Forest Web Page for updated information on these gate closures. There are no services in the Pendola Area. There are no phones, limited cell phone coverage, no potable water, no trash service, no gasoline, and limited tow service for automotive repairs. There is no camping at Big and Little Caliente Hot Springs. The Hot Springs are for Day Use Only (6am – 10pm). Camping is allowed in Campgrounds Only. There are four campgrounds available for camping – Mid Santa Ynez, Rock Camp, P-Bar Flats, and Mono Campgrounds. Mono Campground is a walk-in only campground with 3 sites available. Rock Camp is limited to two vehicles per site with 2 sites available. Mid Santa Ynez and P-Bar Flats have multiple sites and group sites that can all be accessed by vehicle. Fees for camping consist of needing a Forest Adventure Pass. Campground Amenities consist of tables, fire rings, stand-up BBQ’s, and toilets. Adventure Pass is not required for day use at the Hot Springs or Forest Trailheads. Water in the creeks vary from being extremely low to completely dry. It is recommended that visitors plan to haul their own water in for camping. The Hot Springs still has flowing water. Please check the Los Padres Forest web site for updated information of fire restrictions. All regulations are enforced!

At a Glance

Operational Hours: Quiet Hours: 10:00pm-6:00am
Reservations: None
Area Amenities: Tent camping,Picnic tables,Toilets,Parking
Fees Adventure Pass ($5/day or $30/year), or Annual Interagency Pass, Senior Interagency Pass, or Interagency Access Pass. Passes required for each vehicle per night.
Permit Info: Adventure Pass ($5/day or $30/year), or Annual Interagency Pass, Senior Interagency Pass, or Interagency Access Pass.
Restrictions: Pack out all trash. 14 day stay limit.
Closest Towns: Santa Barbara, approximately 30 miles
Water: None
Restroom: Vault
Operated By: Forest Service
Information Center: Santa Barbara Ranger District Office
3505 Paradise Rd
Santa Barbara, CA 93105
(805) 967-3481

General Information

Directions: (From Santa Barbara) Off Hwy 101, 8 miles N.W. on Hwy 154, 20 miles east on East Camino Cielo Road, 3 miles NW on 5N15.

Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information


Camping & Cabins

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Campground Camping

Hiking and mountain biking, hunting, access to Santa Ynez River. For hunting information and restrictions, contact the Santa Barbara Ranger District at (805) 967-3481. More CA hunting information can be obtained at https://www.wildlife.ca.gov/Hunting 

No. of Sites 13
Reservation Info None. First-come, first-serve.
Fire Information NO firewood available at campground.
  For current fire restrictions, contact Santa Barbara Ranger District at (805) 967-3481 or visit www.fs.usda.gov/lpnf
Permit required?: Y


Picnic tables
Tent camping
Toilets vault
Areas & Activities


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