Mars Canyon


Mars canyon is a canyon slightly north and west of Achenbach canyon. The nice thing about Mars is it is relatively short hike and in the shade for most of the morning, so it makes it a good summer hike. The hike starts at the Achenbach trailhead parking and continues to the saddle between two peaks over looking Soledad/Bar Canyons. There is a marked trail for most of the way, but there are sections that are not well marked and the last 0.1 mile is straight up the side of a hill with limited markers to the saddle. There are two dry waterfalls to climb up. The trail is ~1.25 miles up to the saddle and then back down. If we have time and energy, there is a small side canyon to explore as well.

The road to Achenbach trailhead can be very rocky, I recommend a higher clearance vehicle (can be made with lower just take it slow). Afterwards, if there is interest, we can go for lunch.

When: Sun 10/09/16

Where: Milagro coffee for a carpool at 8:00, or at the trail head for Achenbach canyon at 8:30. (if you carpool please compensate your driver.) Please comment on where you will be meeting the group. Thanks.

Getting there: (If you're not meeting at Milagro for the carpool...) Head northeast on University past Tortugas Mountain (A-Mountain). Turn right on Soledad Canyon Rd; turn left at fire station (still Soledad Rd.); turn right onto Ladera Canyon Rd; turn left after the dumpsters onto unmarked rd. and drive up 1/5 mile to trailhead (high-clearance recommended). Or park at road and walk 1/5 mile to trailhead.

Distance: ~3 miles

Duration: ~3-4 hours. The pace will not be too fast, and the group will take short breaks as necessary.

Elevation gain: ~1000 ft

Terrain: Steep trail with 2 climbs up dry waterfalls, in some places trail is not well marked, some scree.

Skill level: Intermediate, strenuous The length is short but the entire hike is mostly straight up and then straight down.

Pets: As far as I know pets are allowed in this area, but the hike itself is not very pet friendly because of the two dry waterfalls.

Please Bring: Water, snacks, sunscreen, hat, gloves, hiking poles (for areas with scree), etc.