Seven Falls: The Most Romantic Place to be this Valentine’s Day

Seven_Falls_day_view

As intimate as dinner and a dozen roses might be, it’s slightly overdone. If you want to make this V-day a real memory, why not go on a Valentines day adventure? Make this February 14th a dirty one– one that will make your sweetheart sweat and get em’ a little wet…That’s right, take them on a hike to Seven Falls!

Refreshing breezes, aromatic wild flowers, captivating views, romantic atmosphere and a great work out are only a few of the things you’ll find on the hike to Seven Falls in the Santa Barbara mountains. If you are looking for an active Valentine’s Day get away, this is it.

The hike begins easily with a paved path that starts at the end of Tunnel Road and winds up the mountain. Eventually, it leads you to a dirt road, which then leads you to the creek bed.

From here, there is the option to follow some winding paths that go alongside the creek, or you can simply follow the creek bed– for those who are up to the challenge. In the late afternoon, this route is nearly empty and makes for a nice, intimate setting. Be warned that it is fairly demanding at times, but that’s part of the fun.

Carol and Benson, UCSB students and experienced hikers, said that this particular hike is one of their favorite things to do together because of its seclusion and challenge. They would recommend it to couples who “don’t mind getting on their hands and knees.”

Seven-Falls-flower-trail

Couples that want a full body workout (which WILL require teamwork at times) can begin the ascent through the creek bed. Hopping from rock to rock, occasionally getting a little wet, and crossing some slippery slopes are all things hikers need to be comfortable with to make the trek.

About a quarter mile up the bed, there is a very steep trail to the right of the creek. A rope hangs there. If you are sure-footed enough, grab onto the rope and venture up the side of the mountain. It is very sturdy, so there is no reason to worry about the rope breaking or coming lose. I would recommend that only one person climb up at a time and that you bring gloves because the rope can be a little uncomfortable on bare hands.

Once at the top of this trail, there is a relatively easy path to follow that parallels the creek bed. There are stunning views of the ocean along this portion of the hike so be sure to have your camera handy.

Seven-Falls-sunst-view

You are nearing the falls this point. There is no one way to get there. Part of the thrill of this route as that you and your significant other can pave your own trail. You and your partner will have to decide what combination of rock climbing and trail navigating you are up for. There are a few winding, over grown paths that parallel the creek and some difficult rock crossings in the stream. As long as you are roughly following the creek, you will find the falls. It truly is an outback adventure that makes the arrival at the waterfall all the more rewarding.

Hikers Heather and Matt recommended that couples make the trip in the early morning or late in the day because in the early afternoon it is “a little too crowded to really be romantic.”

If you decide to go late in the day, however, you and your valentine should make sure to allow for time to return while it is still light out. Making the hike at sunset might seem like a good idea… until the sun sets. After that you better you have a jacket packed and a head lamp strapped on because you will be using all of your limbs on portions of the hike and a simple flashlight will be a hassle to to hold.

The creek bed hike to Seven Falls is a great idea for any active couple who is looking for an intimate adventure through the mountains. You will be working muscles you never realized you had and will undoubtedly be sore the next day– but if getting down and dirty through a gorgeous pass to a stunning waterfall with the one you love isn’t the perfect Valentine’s adventure, I don’t know what is.

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