Partial Park Closure Due to Hazardous Conditions
Rancho Sierra Vista/Satwiwa re-opens 5/14/13, with restrictions (sunrise to sunset, not all trails). Sandstone Peak & Mishe Mokwa trails will also open, as will Backbone Trail east of Point Mugu State Park boundary. Point Mugu backcountry remains closed. More »
Trucks on Cheeseboro Canyon Trail
Occasional truck traffic (approx 6 trips per day) will take place on Cheeseboro Cyn Trail weekdays between 8am & 4pm for demolition and removal of Cheeseboro Tank. Should be completed by 5/24/13. Check back for updates or call 818-889-8996. More »
Map and Site Information: Cheeseboro/Palo Comado Canyon
Welcome to the northernmost section of Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area. Here, in the Simi Hills, the waters that flow in Cheeseboro and Palo Comado Canyons begin their journey to the Pacific. In this large expanse of habitat, deer, bobcats, coyotes and rabbits roam. Stroll to Sulphur Springs or hike to the top of Simi Peak and view the cities you’ve left behind. Walk quietly amid the oaks and grasses or picnic beside a streambed.
The Chumash lived in these canyons for thousands of years. Many trails within the canyons may have originated with the Chumash and then were expanded by the ranchers who followed.
For more than 150 years, ranchers made these canyons their home, bringing about a change in the landscape. Many of the native plants, poorly adapted to heavy grazing, were replaced with European annuals such as wild oats, mustard and thistles. Native plants were not the only things affected. Grizzly bears, once thriving in the canyons, were exterminated by the ranchers
Today, a great diversity of plants and animals live in the canyons. Widespread oaks and outcrops of sedimentary rock provide excellent nesting sites for owls, hawks and other raptors (birds of prey). The abundance of raptors indicates a large prey population, especially small mammals and reptiles. In more rugged areas where cattle didn't graze, we can still find a variety of native plant communities, including chaparral, coastal sage scrub and riparian woodlands.
With the removal of cattle, the landscape is allowed to renew itself. Oak seedlings can now grow tall without becoming food for cattle. Native annual wildflowers are returning, dotting the landscape with colorful displays in the springtime.
Enjoy your visit to Cheeseboro/Palo Comado Canyons and explore the splendors this area has to offer.
5792 Chesebro Road, Agoura, CA, 91301
Ventura Freeway (U.S. 101) to Chesebro Road exit. Turn north on Palo Comado Canyon Road then right on Chesebro Road. Go north 1-mile to park entrance. Turn right and follow road to parking lot.
GPS Coordinates for main parking lot entrance: N 34.1543 W -118.7339
Did You Know?
Piece by piece, a trail is forging its way along the "backbone" of the recreation area. California State Parks took the first step toward a 65-mile Backbone Trail in 1978. With 5 miles left to go, single track trails and fireroads will unite this patchwork of public parklands from east to west.