Gaviota Wind Caves Trail

on

“Tell the story of the mountain you climbed. Your words could be a page in someone else’s survival guide.” – Morgan Harper Nichols

I’ve always had Gaviota Wind Caves on my list. This trail is located in Goleta, CA right before you enter Gaviota State Park there’s a road (on your right) leading up to the trail with a few parking spots. This is a popular hike and the reason why my friend and I decided to go really early. You know by now that I tend to avoid crowds.

Contrary to popular belief, I’m not as adventurous as you probably think I am. Before going on a hike, I do an extensive research on the place I would like to visit. I often check how long the hike will take especially if it’s going to be quite a drive for me to get there.

This is a short 2-mile hike with an elevation gain of around 500 feet. I made the mistake of thinking this was easy. It wasn’t. It gave me a decent workout. It also gave my friend and I a little bit of a scare. Call me a coward but I hate when the plants on both sides of the trail are too high for me to see what lurks in there. There were literally deers crossing out of nowhere. Yes, we were so startled that we didn’t get to take pictures and thankfully didn’t get accidentally knocked over by them. So just a heads up if you ever do this hike. They should put “Deer Crossing” signs.


The next part of the hike was all uphill which was a bit strenuous. It was also quite foggy that day which prevented us from seeing the amazing view from the top. Below are a couple more pictures before we reached the wind caves.


Finally, we reached the Gaviota Wind Caves. The first picture below shows the side of the cave as we started to approach it.


The inside of the cave is pretty cool.


On a clear day you would see the freeway from here.  I obviously picked the wrong day. However, it is a change of scenery for me and I found myself liking it.

You can also climb on top of the cave. Please be careful as you can see it is quite steep and dangerous.

Bel’s tip for this hike:
1. Bring water.
2. Don’t do this hike alone. I figured if we were a bigger group the crossing animals would hear us from a mile away and not suddenly appear out of nowhere.
3. It’s a short hike but I would not rate it as a beginner hike. Bring hiking/trekking poles. It will help.
4. Bring food. We had a sandwich once we got there and you can sit inside the cave which is pretty cool. Leave no trace and take the trash with you.
5. Lastly, I know some of you asked me to write what I would recommend for first-time hikers. Please check out my website – I wrote all the basic necessities for a first time hiker there.
Here’s the link:

https://nothingbutgears.com/hiking-essentials-for-a-hiker-newbie

What do you think of this hike? Please feel free to comment or ask any questions. I would love to hear from you.

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86 Comments Add yours

  1. Stacey McStationary says:

    Very beautiful. I like the practical pointers and the quote at the beginning: “Tell the story of the mountain you climbed. Your words could be a page in someone else’s survival guide.” – Morgan Harper Nichols

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Bel says:

      Thank you, Stacey. I’m glad you liked it. 😊

      Like

  2. Wow nice place and pictures.. 📸

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Bel says:

      Thank you 😊

      Like

  3. Neat description. Lovely pics. Felt like I also hiked along.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Bel says:

      Thank you. It was quite an experience 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I admire your tenacity and will to explore different places and spaces. I personally would have worried about snakes or some other wild animal. I enjoy seeing through your eyes and blog post. Great photos too.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Bel says:

      Thank you Dr. Mary Ann. I appreciate the thoughtful and nice comment. Yeah, I do worry about wild animals – but the need to explore overcomes that fear and I try to stay away from them when I see one…😊

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Well, I would probably wear my cowboy boots to protect myself from snakes. You are very brave! But I understand it’s fun to explore new vistas. Happy hiking!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Bel says:

        You’ll never go wrong with cowboy boots 😊

        Liked by 1 person

      3. True. And I am the one who wears Birkenstock sandals everywhere! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Bel says:

        They are definitely comfy!

        Liked by 1 person

      5. Good support too. Enjoy the weekend.

        Liked by 1 person

      6. Bel says:

        Have an awesome weekend 😊

        Liked by 1 person

      7. You as well! Take a peek in a little while to see my new blog post and latest music adventure!

        Liked by 1 person

      8. Bel says:

        Will do!

        Like

  5. hi! i love your blog and i just nominated you for the liebster award! it’d be really nice if you could
    check it out and follow the proceedings:-
    https://stillherestillgrowing.wordpress.com/2018/06/05/the-liebster-award-2018/

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Bel says:

      Thank you 😊

      Like

  6. Tidbits says:

    This was super cool ! Very nice pics …I like hiking and your tips, I know, are very handy 🙂

    Love the name of your blog. Hope to see more of you here 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Bel says:

      Thank you. I appreciate the kind words and I’m happy you like it 😊

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Tidbits says:

        You’re welcome 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  7. travelwithash09 says:

    Great content Bel. Good going. 😊

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Bel says:

      Thank you 😊

      Like

  8. edgarone2 says:

    I had been to Goleta once for cheese & ice cream. Thank you for info about the cave.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Bel says:

      You’re welcome. Cheese and ice cream sounds awesome as well 😊

      Like

  9. I wonder why such places are not inhabited with people these day.

    Such a great place to meditate.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Bel says:

      It is a great place to meditate 😊

      Like

      1. I am sure it must be!

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Bel says:

      Thank you!

      Like

  10. so beautiful your photos…congratulations!
    have a nice day

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Bel says:

      Thank you 😊

      Like

  11. What an adventure! Thanks for taking us along with you. This magical place just went on my travel wish list. Lovely pics as well. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Bel says:

      Glad you liked it Beth! It’s really nice and not a lot of people if you go early in the morning. 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Pam says:

    That is quite a hike! Beautiful pictures.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Bel says:

      It surely was a great hike with amazing views. Thank you 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  13. travellikeme says:

    Hey nice blog. you have your own site..do you use the premium plan

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Bel says:

      Thanks! Yes I do 😊

      Like

      1. travellikeme says:

        Can you explain me how does it actually help..And can you actually earn with it?

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Bel says:

        I just need it for the memory since I post pictures. You can earn with wordads and wordpress customer support can explain it in detail – earn with it? To be honest, not much unless you have hundreds of thousands or at least a million followers.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. travellikeme says:

        Thanks for the information.just one last question.you have so many followers and still you don’t consider it as a full time earning option?

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Bel says:

        I hope that it will be a full time earning option one day…that is my goal 😊

        Like

      5. travellikeme says:

        I am sure you will..keep writing and helping people like us.thank you

        Liked by 2 people

      6. Bel says:

        By the way – check out being an affiliate blogger on google- that’s also one way of earning income using your blog.

        Like

      7. travellikeme says:

        I really thought you must be definitely doing it.i was actually keen on knowing about that only as must bloggers affiliate with google

        Liked by 1 person

      8. Bel says:

        Yeah do some research especially on being an amazon affiliate 😊

        Like

      9. travellikeme says:

        Sure.. thanks for all the information

        Liked by 2 people

    1. Bel says:

      Thanks for the reblog 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Thank you for your always very thorough lists and your candid personal experience and photos! These are very helpful, instructive and well, fun.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Bel says:

      You’re welcome. I’m happy that you liked it and hopefully learn from my mistakes 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  15. ang says:

    Almost on your post the pictures is taken beautiful

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Bel says:

      Thank you 😊

      Like

  16. scottpiercings says:

    I wonder what the history of those caves is

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Bel says:

      I was actually curious about it and couldn’t find anything on the history of the caves. I’ll keep you posted once I find something 😊

      Like

    1. Bel says:

      Thank you 😊

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You’re welcome 🌞

        Liked by 1 person

  17. Fred says:

    That is beautiful! I’ve been to the Gaviota SP are a number of times and never heard of it. There’s also a hot spring and a nude beach nearby. The winds going thru the SP can get pretty intense. Had to forget about the tent and sleep in the car a couple times.

    Having the fog is nice. I’d prefer to pretend the freeway wasn’t there. On the north side, on the road to Buelton, Daughter and I saw the clouds pile up on the mountains and then start pouring over the passes between. Cloud falls of water vapor tumbling down the side of the hill like slow motion water falls.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Bel says:

      I didn’t know about the hot springs and nude beach nearby. I saw some RVs camped out on the Gaviota SP. I guess they stayed inside when it got pretty windy as well. I love the wind caves – you should check it out when you get a chance. 😊

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Fred says:

        Sometimes the wind thru that pass hit hurricane speed by the time it gets to the park.

        Liked by 1 person

  18. Bindu says:

    Love the mountains. Hope to get there soon

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Bel says:

      I hope you get to visit it soon too 😊 Thanks for your comment!

      Like

      1. Bindu says:

        Thanks. 🙂

        Liked by 2 people

  19. what a cool place! I kinda like it when you can’t see the freeway…puts you in the environment as if you were the 1st discoverer.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Bel says:

      It’s kind of dreamy in a sense that you can just use your imagination freely with the foggy atmosphere 😊 I agree that it is definitely a cool place 😊

      Like

  20. What a cool place, Bel, and the fog made it kind of eerie with all those deer popping out of nowhere. the cave is awesome. Thanks for the photos. I’m so glad you gave it a go!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Bel says:

      Lol eerie was the word I was looking for! I hesitated for a quick second and I was like what the heck – just go for it 😂 It will always be worth it.

      Liked by 1 person

  21. Great information and liked your view of the hike. Wish I lived closer.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Bel says:

      Hi Cindy! Thanks and I’m glad you liked it 😊

      Like

  22. abbyg8rl says:

    Love reading your adventures Bel, happy trails!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Bel says:

      Thanks Abby! You know I live vicariously through you – the real deal adventure gal 😊 Miss you!

      Like

  23. A beautiful, and as the Celts would say, thin place ❤️ We had one of those surprising hikes in the Rocky Mountain National Park shortly after we returned from two weeks at sea level… I suppose the elevation gain and 10,050 summit should have been a warning to us? 🙄🤣

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Bel says:

      Wow that’s a tough hike! I usually prepare myself before hiking serious elevation gains. This one is way easier than that – and the weather was perfect it was just the first part of the trail with animal crossing out of nowhere that made me a little edgy…😊😂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. We live up in Estes and had only been on the coast for 2 weeks on a break… we aren’t as in shape as we thought I guess… but at least we didn’t have the critter issue 😉

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Bel says:

        It must have been quite an experience and I’m pretty sure the views made up for it! 😊

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Oh they did!!

        Liked by 1 person

  24. I actually like the fog. It adds a little mystic element to the place. Bravo!

    Liked by 5 people

    1. Bel says:

      Lol thanks! It does in a way..😊

      Like

  25. It’s a beautiful place 😍

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Bel says:

      It truly is! 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  26. Amazing pictures!! It sounds like you had a wonderful time!🙂

    Liked by 5 people

    1. Bel says:

      It was a good time! After the first part of the hike…😊

      Liked by 1 person

  27. aFrankAngle says:

    No matter if reaching the top by vehicle or foot, it’s always disappointing when the clouds/weather hamper the view. Meanwhile, cheers to the hike! Good find … well, for those in that area. 😉

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Bel says:

      Right? I would prefer it to be on top of the clouds kind of view – which would be amazing too! Thanks for the comment 😊

      Liked by 2 people

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