Home ] Trail Maintenance ] Calendar ] Trail of the Month ] Plant of the Month ] Membership ] History ] About Us ] Links ] Supporters ]


The Backbone Trek 2009 (BBT) is a seven day hike traversing the 67 mile length of the beautiful Santa Monica Mountains. This event is co-sponsored by the Santa Monica Mountains Trails Council (SMMTC) and Coastwalk (CW) and is to be conducted the week of May 2 – 9, 2009.

The Backbone Trail traverses the length of the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area. It follows ridges, chaparral-covered hillsides, enters oak woodlands and crosses creeks and valleys. The daily hikes are rated moderate to strenuous difficulty and average about 10 miles per day. Daily elevation changes range from 500 to 3,000 feet. Hikers carry only a daypack with lunch, water and personal items. Volunteers truck the hiker’s camping equipment from campground to campground. When the night’s campground is not located near the trailhead, a van shuttle is provided to and from the campground. Hikers usually arrive at the night’s campground around 3:00 PM. Upon arriving in camp, participants may relax while being treated to light snacks and cool drinks. While accommodations at the campgrounds vary, all have potable water, toilets, and picnic tables; all but two campgrounds have shower facilities. Hot meals prepared by volunteers are served every evening. In the mornings, hikers prepare their own breakfast, lunch and trail snacks from an assortment of provided "fixings". One of the highlights of the BBT occurs on Tuesday evening, when hikers are treated to a sit down dinner of an all-you-can-eat Bar-B-Q dinner and entertainment in the main dining room of the of the popular Calamigos Ranch.

The BBT begins May 2, 2009 at La Jolla Canyon in Point Mugu State Park. The first day of the event hikers will meet in the afternoon at the Thornhill Broome Beach campground in Point Mugu State Park. After unloading participant’s individual equipment and shuttling private vehicles to a secure parking area, hikers have an opportunity to meet the BBT volunteers, share a light dinner and receive event orientation. The BBT culminates on May 9, 2009 at Will Rogers State Historic Park. A light lunch and cool drinks are provided while all participants share their experiences and say good-byes. After lunch, participants are shuttled back to the vehicle parking area to pick up personal camping gear and private autos.

The fee for this event is $550. Hikers may register for the BBT online at this Coastwalk web page. Registration begins on February 1, 2009 and closes on April 3, 2009.

Questions should be directed to the event coordinator, Jerry Mitcham at (818) 406-1269 or Email at: backbonetrek2009@roadrunner.com.