Broadcast Peak

As the end of the year was drawing near, I knew I needed to focus on finishing my various Six Pack of Peaks challenges. I wrapped up the SoCal challenge a few weeks ago and was down to one more peak to complete the San Diego challenge (I am looking at you Hot Springs Mountain…). I still had three left for the inaugural Central Coast challenge. So I hatched up a plan to knock them out in one trip. I drove up and stayed in Carpinteria to help reduce the impact of the driving on my back. I would have camped somewhere, but could not locate an available campsite. I stayed at the same hotel I had back when I recorded courses for LinkedIn Learning (née Woke up before sunrise and headed to grab my traditional pre-hike breakfast at McDonald’s. This McD’s no longer has a drive-thru, so it was either go inside and order or use their mobile app. With my biscuit, hash browns, and coffee, I set off to Broadcast Peak. 

I exited the 101 at Refugio and headed up the canyon, passing a few farms before the road began climbing. Thanks to discovering the YouTube channel “Subietrails”, I knew that I would have a paved road almost all the way. As I wound my way up, a few quail would scamper across the road. Then I spotted a bobcat darting along the road before diving into the brush. That was a first for me! Once I reached the crest, I turned onto West Camino Cielo and worked my way eastward. Due to some poor planning on my part, I found myself staring straight into the sun at times. I would have to stop and put my head out the window to creep along until I could see properly again. You’d think after attending UCSB I’d remember those mountains run east-west!

Finally, the paved road ended not too far from Santa Ynez Peak. Broadcast Peak was about a mile away, so if I did encounter an issue, it was now easily hikeable. Thankfully, the road was in fine shape. Once at the turnoff to the summit of Broadcast, I debated whether should I park here and hike the last bit, or just use my nifty new tires and drive up. The latter option won. I navigated the first real rut of the trip, then parked at the summit. 

The views were incredible. To the south, I could see 4 of the Channel Islands. Off to the north was Lake Cachuma and the rest of the Santa Ynez valley. I was fairly certain I could spot Gaviota Peak off to the west. I tried to see if there was a summit sign tucked away somewhere but did not discover one. I snapped my photos and headed back down. Along the way, I spotted 3 mule deer off to the side of the road. Once back at the 101, it was a short 15-minute drive to the Gaviota Peak trailhead.

I am an avid peak bagger, sometimes backpacker, and former sea kayaker living in San Diego. In 2019, I became the third person to complete the San Diego 100 Peak Challenge. Not stopping with that accomplishment, I set my sights on the harder San Diego Sierra Club 100 Peak list, which I completed in 2021. In addition, I have conquered several Six-Pack of Peaks challenges (SoCal, San Diego, Central Coast, and Arizona-Winter). Beyond attempting the San Diego Sierra Club 100 Peak list a second time, I am looking forward to exploring new summits and new adventures across the southwest. 

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