Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Other Sellers on Amazon
+ Free Shipping
A Guide to East Santa Cruz Island: Road, Trails, Routes, Scrambles, Landslides Paperback – June 10, 2003
All Books, All the Time
Read author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more at the Amazon Book Review. Read it now
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
About the Author
Don Morris retired in 2001 from the National Park Service after serving for sixteen years as Park Archeologist at Channel Islands National Park, his final posting in a forty year National Park Service career. While holding the world's best job, he had the opportunity to travel extensively throughout the park on foot, by kayak,by plane and helicopter to acquire the knowledge presented in this guidebook. In his spare time he is an avid outdoorsman; he enjoys hiking and backpacking throughout the western US.
Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.
What is Special About Channel Islands National Park?
Channel Islands preserves five of the eight California Channel Islands lying just off the coast of southern California. These islands contain superlative natural and cultural values. The legislation which established the Park in 1980 gives a little more detail - the park has outstanding breeding grounds for seals and sea lions, fabulous habitat for sea birds, thousands of archeological sites, plants and animals found nowhere else, beautiful and productive tide pools and kelp forests, and more. What is really wondrous about Channel Islands National Park is the solitude - the complete change of pace from the urgent urban lifestyle so common on the adjacent mainland.
If you visit the islands you really should manage to stay at least one night. Then you will really sense the different pace of the islands, while at the same time you will see the reflected afterglow of the bright lights of Los Angeles and environs in the distance. The calm of the largely undeveloped islands, their natural setting - simply looking at the night sky and seeing stars instead of smog - will convey the spirit of the islands more than my words ever can.
Although adjacent to sixteen million people Channel Islands National Park is the third least visited national park in the country. This isn't because it is not worth a visit; the islands are either very difficult or very expensive (or, occasionally, both) to visit. This guide attempts to make your visit easier, safer, more fun, and more interesting.
What Makes Me Think I Can Write about the Channel Islands?
I was fortunate enough to serve as the park archaeologist from 1985 to 2001. During that time I visited the islands many times, in various weather conditions, accomplishing a variety of projects, in a lot of out of the way places. My duties included shipwreck investigations, so I spent a fair amount of time diving in park waters - locating and documenting some of the many vessels that have run into th islands. I assisted visitors occasionally, and gave pointers to the many volunteers who helped me in my efforts. Along the way, I realized that many people came to the islands poorly prepared, thereby significantly decreasing their enjoyment of these wondrous islands. This guide is my effort to pass on my understanding of the park and share my knowledge, some of which I learned the hard way.
A Little About the Park:
From my very first assignment here, I felt something very unusual about this park. It seemed to me that the staff was engaged in restoration, as opposed to parks such as Yosemite or Denali, where preservation dominated. I cringe when I see the park described as "pristine", because it is just not so. "Natural" describes the park better and the landscape is certainly less hammered than the adjacent mainland, but one hundred and fifty years of grazing and other uses have left their mark. Before the grazing era, the park islands served as home to at least 2000 Chumash, whose history can be traced back 13,000 years to the end of the Ice Age. Thus during what we might term contemporary conditions, humans have always been part of the island environment. Now the islands are beginning a new and unprecedented phase of their history - a period without significant human occupation in which the preservation and enhancement of nature and history is paramount. The park is recovering from grazing, mostly in spectacular fashion, and the park staff acts as midwife to this rebirth. I have observed notable changes just while I have served and I can hardly imagine how much more beautiful the park will be in the future.
The five islands of Santa Barbara, Anacapa, Santa Cruz, Santa Rosa, and San Miguel, together with offshore water out to a distance of one nautical mile, comprise Channel Islands National Park. Congress created the park in 1980, building on the nucleus of Channel Islands National Monument (Anacapa and Santa Barbara Islands) established by Presidential Proclamation in 1938, and adding the three larger islands.
Considering how close together the park islands are, each island is distinctively different in weather, topography, and general atmosphere. East Santa Cruz Island is the most accessible of the large islands and offers the greatest number of hikes for both overnight and day excursions, hence this guidebook.
As with any guidebook, the one you are holding is no substitute for good judgment on your part. Situations and circumstances can change rapidly, rendering the advice given here obsolete or dangerous. There is no substitute for good decisions on your part. Conditions can reach extremes on the Channel Islands, although they are usually extremely pleasant.
Browse award-winning titles. See more
Top customer reviews
The one thing it could be good for is suggesting interesting trails and off-trail routes (once you've done the obvious stuff) that the NPS doesn't seem to advertise much. The drawback here is that the descriptions are so thin that you would need good route finding abilities and a good map (Hmmmm) to actually do them.
I found reasonable hiking maps for the major trails on the NPS website and when I arrived on the island, there was further information, maps and a really very nice multi-page pamphlet for free. This pamphlet had much of the history and background information I was hoping to get in the book.
In the end I was glad I had it as a back-up and something to read-up on before hand, but if I had it to do over again, I'd buy the Kindle version, read it and then leave it at home.