Founded in 1979, the LPFA is an official non-profit 501(c)(3) partner of the Los Padres National Forest.  Our mission is to care for the Los Padres Forest, ensuring it thrives and remains safe and open for the people to use and enjoy.
The LPFA shares the Forest Service motto of “Caring for the Land and Serving the People.”  We love nothing more than to help people enjoy their time in the Los Padres in a sustainable and respectful manner.  If you have any questions about the forest, trails, camps or anything Los Padres related – we are more than happy to help!


Latest news from LPFA…

While we have you, feel free to browse around and check out all the cool things we have going on across the forest……….

The Los Padres National Forest is the second largest forest in California.  It stretches across the central coast from Los Angeles County up to Monterey.  There are 10 designated wilderness areas within the Los Padres, along with thousands of miles of trails and some of the most spectacular natural wildlife and scenery.  With elevations ranging from sea level to almost 9,000ft, the Los Padres offers a wide assortment of recreational activities including surfing, skiing, hunting, backpacking, mountain biking, bird watching or sitting next to a creek reading a book.  It is also home to thousands of black bear, mountain lion, steelhead trout and of course the iconic California condor.

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Maybe the most amazing thing about the Los Padres is that it is located within a few hours of over 25,000,000 people!  In today’s hurried world of devices pinging at you, urban sprawl and constant availability; having the option to get out of town and spend time in the mountains away from the chaos is something so simple, yet so hard to achieve.  We need places like the Los Padres and these places need groups like the LPFA helping keep them wild and open.

The LPFA helps coordinate volunteer projects across the Los Padres Forest. Our volunteers work to keep trails open, report and assess forest conditions and provide public education on how to safely use the forest.

Click above and below to see bears being bears

Cover for Los Padres Forest Association
Los Padres Forest Association

Los Padres Forest Association

Collaborating with the Los Padres Forest to provide volunteer trail maintenance support, community outreach projects and outdoor recreation opportunities.

SURFING LOS PADRESWe're pretty sure the words 'surfing' and 'Los Padres' don't get used together too often. We're also pretty sure that Australian born three-time surfing world champion 'Mick Fanning' has never been mentioned in a previous LPFA post. Lucky for us, today we get to share a post featuring all three.Rip Curl released a short film earlier this year featuring Mick Fanning, Connor Coffin and crew surfing up and down the California Coast. Eventually they found their way to the Central Coast and even found some time surfing the Los Padres. No volcanoes, no April Fools, if you're a surfer or interested in more, check it out for ... See MoreSee Less
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-RED REEF / LADYBUG WORKING VACATIONApril 23 - May 2-We're now just under two weeks from our next Working Vacation where we'll be restoring the Red Reef Trail within the Sespe Wilderness. Should be epic! Most of us will be driving up from Rose Valley (blue line) to the Red Reef TH and from there backpacking 5 miles out and down to Ladybug Camp (purple line). Once again we've got packers bringing in the food, kitchen, camp supplies, drinks and most of the tools. And speaking of drinks, @topatopabrewingco will be generously donating a fresh supply of Topa Topa beers for us to look forward to at the end of each day of trail work! We'll be enjoying Topa Topa brews all week literally along the Topatopas, so cool! THANK YOU!-Most of the work will be brushing and clearing tread from Ladybug Camp down a few miles towards the Sespe Creek. A lot of energy will be spent cleaning up the infamous cribwall section, which should be a lot of fun too!-It's not too late in case you'd like to sign up and join the fun. The first half of the project is mostly full but we certainly have room the second half of the week and into the second weekend. Come on out.... email us at to sign up or for more information. Hope to see you there!---#lospadresnationalforest #TopaTopaMountains #redreeftrail #lpfaworkingvacations #trailvolunteersrock first photo by Bardley #trailpackers #packstockcenterofexcellence #comejointhefun ... See MoreSee Less
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-CALIFORNIA STATE TRAILS DAY-Great day working the Cold Spring Ridge Trail with many of our friends and partners. We even made a new friend, see photo. Tread was cleared, trees high-limbed, some light brushing and LOTS of work spent trying to deter illegal dead-end user-trails. So nice to have in person events again. Thanks to everyone who came out and braved the heat. Hope to see you again soon…--@cityofsb @countyofsb @montecitotrailsfoundation @lospadres_lpfa atDaveE @sbchickenranch #volunteerfun #trailvolunteersrock #gousethetrails ... See MoreSee Less
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-LOS PADRES HOT SPOT ERUPTION-The Los Padres is home to a few thermal anomalies or thermal hot spots which are basically shallow areas of extreme heat caused by pockets of gas. The two most famous LP hot spots are within the northeastern Dick Smith and then above Fillmore in the Sespe Oil Fields. Temperatures within these hot spots can reach over 800˚ just a few feet below the surface and are often triggered by landslides or other natural occurrences. Early Thursday morning a 3.7 magnitude earthquake centered in Tehachapi is thought to be the cause of a rather large ignition of the Dick Smith hot spot. According to geologists, the earthquake sheered the junction of the Garlock and Big Pine Faults at the thermal hot spot which caused the mild eruption. While fire personnel haven't been able to get close enough to safely assess the Dick Smith hot spot, aerial imagery confirms that in addition to rivers of flowing lava spewing from the crater, toxic sulfur dioxide dispersed for hundreds of miles and frequent volcanic bombs the size of houses that there was also hot water seeping out of a secondary vent which appears to be around 104˚ and may eventually turn into a lovely hot spring. Experts are hoping to use drones over the coming days to help learn more about the extent of this Los Padres volcanic eruption. No closure orders have been issued. We’ll keep you posted….--#slooflirpa #lospadresnationalforest #volcaniceruption #dicksmithwilderness #thermalhotspots #lovelyhotsprings #AprilFools2022 ... See MoreSee Less
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-MATILIJA TRAIL SLIDE REPAIR-We had gotten word from both and via email that there was a particularly nasty set of slides blocking the Matilija Trail a few miles up between Matilija and Middle Matilija Camps. Photos were shared and we organized a Trailwork Tuesday event this week to go inspect the damage and hopefully knock them out. A brave crew of 7 volunteers showed up and armed with McLeods, picks, loppers and saws we embarked on the 3-mile hike up to the slides. Sure enough, the slides were bad, so bad in fact that a very substantial user-trail was being developed in order to avoid the sketchy slide section altogether. At first the slides seems more than we could handle yet slowly but surely, one tool swing at a time we were able to restore the tread to a 2-3ft width and once again send happy hikers up the correct trail.-While we were there we also cut out about a half dozen downed trees, cleared some of the brushier crossings and of course got to know each other in the process and share a few stories and laughs. We'll be back in the Ojai area later this month along the Lion Canyon Trail, another Trailwork Tuesday April 12 on the Rose-Lion Trail and of course the BIG Red Reef Working Vacation starting April 23. Hope to see you out there and enjoy the trails.....-And please continue to share any trail issues you find on HikeLosPadres, we can't help fix em if we don't know about em. THANKS!---#knockingitout #trailworktuesday #lospadresnationalforest #hikelospadresdotcom #beforeandafterlp #matilijawilderness #matilijatrail #onetoolswingatatime #howdoyoueatanelephant #seeyououttheresoon ... See MoreSee Less
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