Hiking Across 100 Million Years

Date: Saturday, May 20, 2017

Time: 9:00AM - 1:30PM

Instructor: Susie Bartz

Location: Birabent Canyon

Member: Birabent Canyon @ $50.00
Nonmember: Birabent Canyon @ $65.00

This hike up Birabent Canyon crosses the spectacular Little Pine Fault, where a wedge of ancient ocean floor is thrust onto the shoulders of Figueroa Mountain and jammed against much younger terrain. The trail approaches the base of Grass Mountain, where we pass a native village site and ponder the mysterious markings on its rocks. Throughout the hike the creek yields colorful rocks from a subduction zone dating back to the Mesozoic age. We’ll explore serpentinite – the state rock of California – and a fine exposure of highly metamorphosed blueschist, as well as the glassy chert used by local native Americans for cutting tools.

NOTE: 3 miles round trip and follows gentle to moderately difficult slopes. Participants should be in good physical condition with good balance.

Participants should bring:

  • Hiking poles - necessary to navigate some steeper decents & creek crossings
  • Sturdy boods with good traction
  • Lots of water
  • Bag lunch
  • Hat
  • Sunscreen


Image of Susie BartzSusie Bartz grew up in rural Pennsylvania playing in the wooded hills and rocky creeks outsider her house. After college and graduate school, she married and came to Santa Barbara in 1974. She enjoys hiking and backpacking, and holds a degree in geology from SBCC. In 2009, she completed a project publishing the maps of legendary geologist Tom Dibblee, who was her personal friend and mentor, and in whose memory she dedicates her walks. As a geology educator, Susie works with schools and community organizations to bring an awareness of earth science to the general public in outdoor settings. She lives in Santa Barbara with her husband and assorted cats, and has two married daughters and three darling grandsons.

Geology Walk Series:

Botany/Natural History
Travel/Day Trips