Following years of litigation, a pristine coastline in Santa Barbara County is largely inaccessible to the public after a settlement between wealthy homeowners and state coastal officials. However, the settlement is not setting well with coastal access advocates.
The California Coastal Commission (CCC) has been in a decades-long legal battle with the Hollister Ranch Owners Association (HROA), trying to get over-land access to Cuarta Canyon Beach, about three miles west of Gaviota State Beach.
Earlier this year, they reached a settlement, that basically establishes a “managed access program,” where the HROA will allow a certain number of students, non-profits, veterans, etc, to be bused into various other beaches within Hollister Ranch. In exchange, the CCC gives up the battle to get overland access to Cuarta Canyon Beach.
That means the only way for the general public to get to Cuarta Canyon Beach is by sea, a six-mile round-trip paddle from Gaviota State Park.
Learn more: KPIX 5 Original Reports – Beach Out Of Reach