Carrizo Plain National Monument: 100 Miles from Los Angeles

cycling in the carrizo plain national monument

“The Carrizo Plain (Obispeño: tšɨłkukunɨtš, “Place of the rabbits”); is a large enclosed grassland plain, approximately 50 miles (80 km) long and up to 15 miles (24 km) across, in southeastern San Luis Obispo County, California, about 100 miles (160 km) northwest of Los Angeles. It contains the 246,812-acre (99,881 ha) Carrizo Plain National Monument, and it is the largest single native grassland remaining in California.” – Wikipedia.org

cycling in the carrizo plain national monument
Climbing early into the route

“It includes Painted Rock in the Carrizo Plain Rock Art Discontiguous District, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. In 2012 it was further designated a National Historic Landmark due to its archeological value. The San Andreas Fault occurs along the eastern edge of the Carrizo Plain at the western base of the Temblor Range.”

Carrizo Plain Ride Experience Video

Alternative Video Link for those reading via email subscription.

In this video, JOM of the Gravel Cyclist crew is joined by the Lady Gravel Cyclist by a wide open mixed surface ride in the Carrizzo Plain. Total distance is approximately 40 miles / 63 kilometres. It is very easy to extend the length of this ride if so inclined. Route is linked below.

cycling in the carrizo plain national monument

Continued from Above:

“The Carrizo Plain extends northwest from the town of Maricopa, following the San Andreas Fault. Bordering the plain to the northeast is the Temblor Range, on the other side of which is California’s Central Valley. Bordering the plain to the southwest is the Caliente Range. The community of California Valley is in the northern part of the plain.”

cycling in the carrizo plain national monument

“The average elevation of the plain is about 2,200 feet (670.6 m). Soda Lake, a 3,000-acre (12 km2) alkaline lake, is in the center of the plain with the popular Painted Rock containing Chumash and Yokuts rock art nearby. As the central depression in an enclosed basin, Soda Lake receives all of the runoff from both sides of the plain. At 5,106 feet (1,556 m), Caliente Mountain, southwest of the plain, stands as the highest point in San Luis Obispo County. The climate type of the Carrizo Plain is semi-arid grassland. No trees grow there and the annual rainfall is around 9 inches (230 mm) per year.”

cycling in the carrizo plain national monument
Met these lads along the route, enjoying their own adventure

Maricopa, California

“Maricopa is a city in Kern County, California. Maricopa is located 6.5 miles (10 km) south-southeast of Taft, at an elevation of 883 feet (269 m). The population was 1,154 at the 2010 census, up from 1,111 at the 2000 census. The Carrizo Plain is located to the northwest, and the enormous Midway-Sunset Oil Field, the third largest oil field in the United States, is adjacent on the north and east.”

Additional Photos

cycling in the carrizo plain national monument

cycling in the carrizo plain national monument
Ahead, one of the few vehicles we encountered
cycling in the carrizo plain national monument
Amazing views
cycling in the carrizo plain national monument
Dodgy descent early in the route

cycling in the carrizo plain national monument

cycling in the carrizo plain national monument
Views for Miles
cycling in the carrizo plain national monument
T-Lab X3.22 Review Bike
cycling in the carrizo plain national monument
Lady Gravel Cyclist

cycling in the carrizo plain national monument

cycling in the carrizo plain national monument
Sandy & loose conditions in places
cycling in the carrizo plain national monument
Another rider sighted!
cycling in the carrizo plain national monument
Cutting across the Valley

cycling in the carrizo plain national monument

cycling in the carrizo plain national monument

cycling in the carrizo plain national monument

cycling in the carrizo plain national monument
The final miles / kms included some mega washboard

cycling in the carrizo plain national monument

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One thought on “Carrizo Plain National Monument: 100 Miles from Los Angeles

  1. After a wet winter, this can be one of the most spectacular wildflower locations in the world. Fortunate for you or not, if it were so, you would surely have experienced more crowds.

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