Indian Creek Trail
From the Mission, corner of Laguna and Los Olivos Street in Santa Barbara...
Take Los Olivos toward the mountains. The road makes a jag to the left and right again and becomes Mission Canyon Rd.
Turn right on Foothill Rd.
At the fire station at the 3-way intersection, continue straight ahead.
Follow this windy road to Mountain Drive. Turn left.
Follow windy Mountain Drive to Sheffield Reservoir and turn left.
Continue a short way (2 tenths of a mile or so) and turn right on Gibraltar Rd. There's a fork in the road right away. Make sure to stay to the left as you make this turn.
Gibraltar meets a 4-way intersection with El Cielito Rd. Continue straight through the intersection.
Gibraltar Rd. winds into the mountains and meets Camino Cielo Rd. at its summit.
At the junction with Camino Cielo Rd., look carefully. There is a large brown sign to the right. Turn right at the sign.
Follow E. Camino Cielo Rd. for about 6 miles. The road become dirt at the Romero Saddle. There is a water tank here, the second one you will have seen.
Continue down the now dirt road. The road is dusty and tiring.
There is a junction with a parking spur that seems like the right way to go. It's not, but if you take it accidentally, you'll just meet back up. There is also a locked gate at one point. If for some reason it's unlocked, don't go that way.
Deep in the canyon you will see a locked gate at Juncal Campground. There are endangered red legged frogs here so they closed access. You can't park your car near the campground for quite some distance, making hiking here inconvenient.
There are more campgrounds along the way, a favorite of many being P-Bar Flats. Why they like it, I do not know. Seems there are lots of flies anytime I'm near it.
At the junction with Pendola Station, stay straight. Cross the creek
At the summit of a hill is a sign talking about the River of Life. Proceed down the hill.
You will see a campground. This is the lazy campsite for Mono Campground, where people who don't want to carry their stuff camp. The campground itself is a walk-in, and there is a large debris dam that is worth a look.
Near Mono is a junction to the right headed toward Little Caliente Hot Springs. People love this hot spring.
About less than 1/4 mile past the junction with the road to Little Caliente Hot Springs you'll reach the end at an iron gate. Park here. The hike begins beyond the gate.
You will need an Adventure Pass to park your car.