Rodeo Flats Trail

runcyclegirl
Posts: 31
Joined: Thu Feb 09, 2012 1:58 pm

Re: Rodeo Flats Trail

Post by runcyclegirl »

Date Hiked: October 31, 2021
General Condition: Passable (some brush and/or deadfalls, tread evident)

I last hiked Rodeo Flat six years ago while on a loop hike from Carrizo Trail. This time I hiked up to loop through upper Arroyo Seco Trail. While the views are still impressive (and the road is still steep!), the contrast between pre/post Dolan squeezes my heart more than just a little.

The road itself is mostly clear and passable especially on the lower sections. There are some fire damaged trees on the road but none to impede one's walk. The lower section is also free of brush for the most part but not so as you climb. Yerba Santa crowd the road and there are intermittent pockets of rocky rubble to negotiate. The soil was soft due to recent rains which offered grippy surfaces on the steeper climbs. And, it is steep! The road is visible for a long way, long before you get there, long enough to wonder, is it going up that ridge? Oh, shit, yes, it does. Yes, it does.

Maria
Taken 2015, looking down the valley.
Taken 2015, looking down the valley.
Post fire views.
Post fire views.
Fire damaged pines.
Fire damaged pines.
Clear road on lower section.
Clear road on lower section.
Fire damage, view southward.
Fire damage, view southward.
Brushy upper road.
Brushy upper road.
Rob
Posts: 106
Joined: Thu Sep 18, 2008 3:21 pm
Location: SJC

Re: Rodeo Flats Trail

Post by Rob »

Date Hiked: May 23, 2020
General Condition: Passable (some brush and/or deadfalls, tread evident)

The flatter top section had a few brushy stretches. The rest was steep and loose, pretty much what you would expect for an old firebreak.

Nice views of the Arroyo Seco drainage in places, though.
Matt G

Re: Rodeo Flats Trail

Post by Matt G »

Date Hiked: April 3, 2020
General Condition: Wilderness Freeway (Heavily used and well maintained)

Hiked Rodeo Flat from North Coast Ridge down to Arroyo Seco/Memorial Park. Trail is excellent, total freeway. Only the top 1/2 mile has overgrown Ceonothus and other scrub but it's easily passable. Very little poison oak.
seagoat1724
Posts: 28
Joined: Sun May 26, 2019 3:39 pm

Re: Rodeo Flats Trail

Post by seagoat1724 »

Date Hiked: October 9, 2018
General Condition: Passable (some brush and/or deadfalls, tread evident)

Between Rodeo Flat Trail Junction and Arroyo Seco Trail
Trail is passable. Many parts are clear and open, the trail can be the full width of the road. However, much of it is covered with thick brush and some blowdowns. Tread is easy to follow because it is old road with 2 treads.
aa6xa

Re: Rodeo Flats Trail

Post by aa6xa »

Date Hiked: April 8, 2019
General Condition: Clear (no obstacles and tread well defined)

Hiked from Santa Lucia Campground to the Ridge Trail. The steep climbs are open "wilderness freeways". Near the top, where the trail levels out, it is overgrown. The old jeep trail is easy to follow, but expect to have to push through some brush. Didn't see any poison oak, and the trail is wide enough to go around if there is any.
hydrologic
Posts: 17
Joined: Sun Apr 19, 2015 1:23 am

Re: Rodeo Flats Trail

Post by hydrologic »

Date Hiked: December 10, 2018
General Condition: Clear (no obstacles and tread well defined)

old road is easy to hike. it's wide and brush free. once it turns back to the trail it gets pretty brushy at times but still easy to follow.
lylegordon
Posts: 10
Joined: Tue May 29, 2018 9:26 am

Re: Rodeo Flats Trail

Post by lylegordon »

Date Hiked: May 26, 2018
General Condition: Passable (some brush and/or deadfalls, tread evident)

Eroded in places and a few brushy sections but overall easily passable. Paved with wildflowers almost the entire way. Lots of grass/foxtails that would get stuck in your shoes. No sources of water along the way.
pantilat
Posts: 116
Joined: Tue Jan 07, 2014 1:16 pm

Re: Rodeo Flats Trail

Post by pantilat »

Date Hiked: January 20, 2018
General Condition: Clear (no obstacles and tread well defined)

This steep dirt road is badly eroded in spots with deep channels where last winter's rains wrecked havoc, but it's clear of brush and an efficient route to high elevations. There are lots of interesting rock formations set amid knobcone pines and Coulter pines, and the excellent views make up for the steep pitch. About halfway up the ridge, the road leaves the crest and traverses along the south slope of the ridge all the way to Rodeo Flat. Instead of taking the road, one can stay right along the ridge crest where there are more fascinating rock formations and excellent views of the Arroyo Secco headwaters and Santa Lucia Peak. Continuing along the ridge crest one reaches a remnant stand of beautiful Sugar Pines set among the reddish rocks. The ridge culminates in a small peak (Point 4735 on USGS topo map) with suburb views to Lost Valley and Ventana Double Cone. The only nuisance for the alternate route along the ridge crest is the fire crews "cleared" the upper part of the ridge as a handline, but left the brush droppings in place so sometimes one needs to weave around the debris.
Bill Vogt

Re: Rodeo Flats Trail

Post by Bill Vogt »

Date Hiked: December 18, 2017
General Condition: Clear (no obstacles and tread well defined)

Big uphill hike, but clear most of the way. The last quarter mile is a bit brushy if you choose to follow the old road instead of going up and over the peak where an alternate route has been cleared. The old road is easy to follow in the section, just a little brushy.

Had a close encounter with a bear on the lower part of the trail. First, we saw older bear scat on the trail. Then, fresh bear scat and tracks. Finally, there was something big (assume it was a bear) rustling in the brush next to the trail.
Brian M McCutcheon
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Dec 19, 2016 9:20 pm

Re: Rodeo Flats Trail

Post by Brian M McCutcheon »

Date Hiked: December 26, 2016
General Condition: Clear (no obstacles and tread well defined)

My dog Dash and I hiked Rodeo Flats from Arroyo Seco Trail to the top and back. My guess is that a bulldozer came through within the past year, but I don't speak bulldozer-track so might have misread the timing. There were no meaningful obstacles. There were two or three large tree trunks that were very easily stepped up and over, appearing as though they were deliberately placed. The upper part of the trail had a large amount of dead chaparral, as though run over by something like a bulldozer in the past year. But this was generally easy to weave through without gouging one's legs. The big challenge was the slope, which became ever more unforgiving as we got closer to the top. Despite cold air (maybe 40 degrees) and a stiff breeze, I perspired profusely in shorts and a thin short sleeve shirt. We descended 2/3 of the way from the top toward the conjunction with North Coast Ridge Trail and stopped there for a quick lunch, admiring the awesome views in 3 of 4 directions. Looks like the dead chaparral ended where we stopped, as the last 100-200 yards to the conjunction, spread out below us, was completely clear. We'll have to come back another day to enjoy that part.
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