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We Support the Extension of the California Scenic Trail
above North Rincon (Bates) Beach

Left: Trail on beach side; Center:Trail along 101 Freeway (yellow line) ; Right:proposed pedestrian bridge across RR tracks.

09/2009 Coastal Trail Proposal
PDF- 83 pages, 4.8 MB)
06/2012 Revised Costal Trail Report
PDF- 172 pages, 11 MB)

What it is...

"The proposed Rincon Trail would provide a crucial non-motorized link to popular beaches and surfing destinations and would feature a functioning bioswale, storm water runoff management, bridge for safe railroad crossing and an acceptable slope pursuant to the Federal Architectural and Transportation Barriers Compliance Board (Access Board) guidelines. Shared-use paths are designed for both transportation and recreation purposes and are used by pedestrians, bicyclists and other users. These guidelines include technical provisions for making newly constructed and altered shared-use paths covered by the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) and the Architectural Barriers Act of 1968 accessible to persons with disabilities in all areas for maximum accessibility for hikers and bicyclists of all levels." - Rincon Trail Report, June, 2012.

In plain English, the City of Carpinteria's Parks Department is planning to create a 12-ft wide fenced footpath just above the northern part of North Rincom (Bates) Beach from the parking lot west to about where the concrete barrier is on the beach below (the proposed clothing=optional area), then cut back inland across a new foot bridge above the railroad tracks to the 101 freeway, then parallel the freeway west to the end of Carpinteria Avenue (where the Veneco Oil plant is located). The 5000-ft. trail was originally proposed to take 8 months to construct at an estimated cost of $1.8 million however at their November 2013 meeting, the Carpinteria City Council was told they construction will begin in early 2015 and be completed by early 2019.

Our Role...

Friends of Bates Beach met with Carpinteria’s Manager for Parks and Recreation, (who is in charge of the project) soon after the proposed trail was announced, and we suggested three things:

First, that the trail be built with a fence and signage along the bluff to prevent hikers loitering too close to the cliff’s edge and accidently falling, since the cliff side is prone to erosion and an occasional rockslide.

Second, that the western end of the old access to this trail be blocked so that voyeurs and drug dealers can no longer use it. This area is notorious from crime (especially the culvert under the RR tracks) and this is a good time to fix the problem for good, since the trail construction will be alongside this area.

Third, that Friends of Bates Beach volunteer to have our Beach Watch Ambassadors walk the trail periodically during the day to supplement whatever deputies or rangers the city might have planned for monitoring the area. We have not heard back yet on this last suggestion.

In our meeting we also discussed the over-use of the beach as a dog run in violation of the county rules. He agreed the dogs should be controlled better but designating a "dog run" as part of the trail will not be part of the project.

No doubt a few public hearings will be heald soon. FOBB will participate and contribute as needed.

Last Updated: May, 2014