Climbing Figueroa Road West in Los Padres National Forest
Both routes to the top of Figueroa Road, Santa Barbara County, are located almost entirely in Los Padres National Forest (established 1936 by Franklin D. Roosevelt; 1,950,000 acres). The Figueroa Mountain Recreation Area is within the Los Padres National Forest. Figueroa Mountain is part of the Santa Ynez Mountains which are part of the Pacific Coast Range.
The climb up Figueroa West is similar to the Southern approach, although the views on this segment are primarily to the south (Santa Ynez Valley), while the Western approach offers a bit broader view radius (primarily north, south and west). The sustained pitches on this climb are slightly more challenging than the southern approach (several sections with grades between 8-15% - see elevation profile, below) - this is a very challenging and rewarding climb. We rode most of this climb in the rain which dampened our views, but as you can see from the video and photographs, this is a climb you will appreciate and certainly not regret. Much of the climb from both approaches is through the Los Padres National Forest.
Start of climb on Figueroa Mountain Road
Enter National Forest at mile 3.1
Wide open views on this climb
Very narrow road.
Roadway surface and Traffic: The first 3 miles of this climb are on rough roadway which smooths out considerably once we enter Los Padres National Forest just after the 3 mile mark. As with Figueroa South, the road is essentially one lane, but there is minimal traffic and this is a safe and isolated climb.
Snow is not infrequent at the higher point of the climb during the winter.