Upcoming events

    • 26 Aug 2017
    • 10:30 AM - 7:00 PM
    • Chase Palm Park, Santa Barbara

    Great Outdoors needs volunteers to work the GO booth at this pride festival. Register for shifts here or contact Joe directly

    Chase Palm Park, Santa Barbara

    About the Pacific Pride Festival:

    2017's Pacific Pride Festival will take place on Saturday, August 26, at Chase Palm Park, overlooking Santa Barbara's legendary, beautiful coastline.

    The festival features a full day of live entertainment, vendors, food booths, activities and community member support. The mission of the Pacific Pride Festival is to build community, foster visibility, and celebrate sexuality & gender diversity, all while raising funds for Pacific Pride Foundation's LGBTQ+ programs and services in Santa Barbara County.




    • 1 Sep 2017
    • 4 Sep 2017
    • Scorpion Ranch, Santa Cruz Island

    Register at http://greatoutdoorssandiego.wildapricot.org/event-2421451

    Breathtaking ocean views and relaxing beach time is practically guaranteed at Scorpion Canyon Campground, join your friends of Great Outdoors as we return to this classic get away. Set on the eastern part of the island, the campground is a short hike from the pier and is sheltered from harsh ocean winds.

    The largest of California's Channel Islands, Santa Cruz Island is one of the five islands that make up the Channel Islands National Park. The island is rich in cultural history, magnificent landscapes, and unique flora and fauna. Native American Indians inhabited the island for over 10,000 years and Europeans explored and ranched on the island for over  150 years. Over 600 plant species, 140 land birds, 11 land mammals and a handful of amphibians and reptiles call the island their home. The island fox and island scrub-jay are exciting finds, as they're unique to the island, found nowhere else in the world.  

    This fantastic joint trip between the San Diego and Santa Barbara/Ventura chapters will begin on Friday, September 1st mid-day (12:00 PM noon departure) and will conclude on Monday, September 4th in the early evening (5 PM return to Ventura harbor).  We’ve taken care of the campsite and boat transportation over to the island, so all you have to do is register online, and you'll be set to go.  As part of the trip, two ocean kayaks will be available for individuals to use to explore the incredible coastline.  Sign-up sheets will be available at the campsite to reserve your time on the water.  Space is limited as we only have 15 spots available, so register early to reserve your space!

    There are no services provided on the island, so you're required to bring all items that you will need during your stay, potable water is available at the campsite.  There is a 1/4 mile walk to the campsite from the pier, so make sure you're completely mobile.  We recommend that if you're taking a cooler, make sure it has wheels (some restrictions apply from the transportation provider, click here for additional information).

    This jewel off our coast offers some of the most beautiful ocean and landscape views to be had in southern California, we hope to see you there!

    Cancellation Policy: You can cancel for a full refund on or before August 11, 2017.  Any cancellations after August 11, 2017 will not be eligible for a refund.



    11:00 AM Arrive @ Ventura Harbor, check-in

    12:00 PM Boat departs for Santa Cruz Island 

    1:00 PM Arrival @ Santa Cruz Island

    6:00 PM Meet & Greet Tea (Mai-Tai Luau)

    7:35 PM Sunset


    6:40 AM Sunrise

    9:00 AM Day Hike: Smugglers Cove(7.5 miles rt)

    6:00 PM Potluck

    7:34 PM Sunset


    6:40 AM Sunrise

    9:00 AM Day Hike: Potato Harbor (5 miles rt)

    5:00 PM Potluck

    6:30 PM Sunset Hike: Cavern Point Loop (2 miles rt)

    7:33 PM Sunset


    6:41 AM Sunrise

    3:00 PM Check-in for boat departure

    4:00 PM Depart the island for the mainland

    5:00 PM Arrive @ Ventura Harbor

    *Times are estimated and subject to change without notice.


    Getting There:

    Boat transportation can be arranged with Island Packers from Ventura Harbor.

    To park headquarters in Ventura, Ca: exit Highway 101, at Victoria or Seaward to Ventura Harbor.

    Contact Information:

    Mailing Address:

    Island Packers, 1901 Spinnaker Drive, Ventura  CA  93001

    Information:  (805) 658-5730

    Register for this trip at http://greatoutdoorssandiego.wildapricot.org/event-2421451


    • 14 Sep 2017
    • 2:00 PM
    • 17 Sep 2017
    • 12:00 PM
    • Pfieffer Big Sur State Park

    Pfieffer Big Sur State Park Campout

    Sept 14-17, 2017 

    The Big Sur area along the central California coast is legendary for it’s beauty, its remoteness, its ruggedness, its mystery, and the atmosphere of pervasive spirituality. The jagged coastline of steep cliffs intercut with deep canyons, the wilderness and undeveloped land, the abundance of woodlands and wildlife, the unpredictable weather, and the throngs of visitors, all add to the mood and mystic of this popular destination. More info at: http://jrabold.net/bigsur/intro.htm

    For this four-day/three-night outing we will be camping at Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park. Fortunately the campsites were secured before the heavy rains, damaging landslides, and bridge failure closed the Big Sur coast. Most of Highway 1 will remain closed indefinitely, but our campground is just north of the demolished bridge, so it is still accessible by driving south from Monterey/Carmel on Highway 1.

    More info at: https://www.parks.ca.gov/?page_id=570

    While the park is open, unfortunately almost all of the trails in and near PBSSP are closed due to damage from the winter rains or the fire in 2016. Andrew Molera State Park is also closed as of this writing, as are most trails to the east of Hwy 1.

    What will be available to us? Point Sur Light House will be open, Bixby Bridge is still there, and so is the village of Big Sur. Big Sur Lodge is open and one can buy meals and coffee there. In addition, interesting places south of the collapsed bridge, such as Nepenthe, Henry Miller Library, Coast Gallery, and Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park, will most likely be accessible by way of a shuttle service that takes visitors up to the demolished bridge where they use a newly built trail that goes down and up the canyon and connects to shuttle service on the other side of the gap. For hiking and exploring on Saturday the best alternative is probably Point Lobos, 20 miles to the north. More info at: http://www.parks.ca.gov/?page_id=571


    The campout starts Thursday afternoon and there will be a welcome tea for those that are able to get away. For dinner we’ll probably venture into Big Sur Village.

    Friday we’ll avail ourselves of the shuttle service and visit Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park and perhaps have lunch at Nepenthe. There will be a welcome tea at 4:00 with campfire fellowship later. Maybe readings from some of the literary greats who have lived in or been associated with Big Sur, like Robison Jeffers, Jack Kerouac, or Henry Miller. Or ghost stories from the coast. Or games.

    Saturday after breakfast we’ll carpool to Point Lobos State Natural Reserve, considered the “crown jewel” of the state park system. There are miles of trails and endless natural beauty in the park and we’ll absorb as much of it as possible in a day. Return to the campground for the traditional Great Outdoors potluck and more fun around the campfire afterwards.

    Sunday we must strike our tents, clean the campsites, and checkout by 12:00 PM.


    Our group has six sites reserved, each site is compact. However, each will easily hold three small tents or possibly one large and two small tents.  Pair up if you have a large tent. Each site is allowed a maximum of eight people but we are going to limit it to four people per site (unless you have a group sleeping in your large tent). There is a water spigot at each site plus a fire ring and picnic table. Flush toilets and coin-operated showers are close by to the sites. There is a camp store for forgotten necessities. Please bring a bundle of firewood purchased from the camp host (expensive) or nearby.


    Camping fees include entry for one vehicle. Those free spaces will be given on a first-come first-served basis. One additional vehicle is allowed at each site but until everyone is checked in we want the second spot left open for campers to unload their gear. After the first six vehicles there will be a per-day charge for each vehicle. Additional vehicles will have to park in overflow or day use parking, therefore carpooling is important.

    Only registered campers are allowed in the campground. Due to congestion and traffic constraints, free passes for deliveries or passenger drop off are not permitted.

    Campground Notes:

    Check out is 12 PM. Check in is 2 PM. Checkout times are strictly enforced.

    Dogs must be on a maximum 6 foot leash and attended at all times. Dogs are not allowed on trails or in the Big Sur River Gorge.

    There is poison oak throughout the park.


    Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park is 26 miles south of Carmel on Highway 1. That is currently the only access route. To get to Hwy. 1, take 101 to Salinas, then south on 68, then south on Hwy. 1 at Monterey.  The park will be on your left a few miles after you pass through Big Sur Village. If you reach the Big Sur Ranger Station you have gone too far.


    Prepare for anything except snow. There might be rain, might be fog, it might be cool (especially at night) and it might be warm.

    Price: $45 for Great Outdoors members; $70 for non-members.

    Cancellation policy:  full refund given at least five (5) days prior to departure; no refunds after that.

    For more information, contact: Thomas Larson   thomassbca@yahoo.com

    • 20 Sep 2017
    • 6:00 PM
    • Rusty's Pizza, 232 W. Carrillo St, Santa Barbara

    Core Group Meeting starts at 6pm (you're welcome to attend if you want to be involved in the "business" of your chapter)

    Pizza Social starts at 7pm and costs $5 per person for those who wish to eat pizza.

    Rusty’s Pizza, 232 West Carrillo St, Santa Barbara (intersection of Carrillo and Bath). For more information contact our President, Joe D.


    • 6 Oct 2017
    • 8 Oct 2017
    • Table Mountain

    Great Outdoors Annual Conference - Table Mountain

    Save the date! Full trip notes to follow. 

    We have reserved 10 sites for this year's conference, and RVs/Trailers up to 50 feet are welcome, in limited numbers. If you plan on attending and bringing an RV/Trailer, please email Wes at fwsj69@gmail.com so that we can plan accordingly.


    • 21 Oct 2017
    • 11:30 AM
    • Goleta Beach Park
    • 20

    Beach Picnic with Gay Flying Clubs (Unusual Attitudes and Golden Gate Flyers)

    Sat. October 21; 11:30 AM (Pilots will arrive around noon).  Goleta Beach Park, Picnic Site C

    Please join us for our annual beach picnic with the gay flying clubs.  We meet at the beach for a BBQ, the pilots fly in, we eat and socialize together, and have a great time at the beach.  

    Great Outdoors will provide the food: burgers, fixins, chips, fruit, salad, dessert, and drinks.  

    We ask that you leave a donation in our collection jar, so that we can do this event again next year.

    Please RSVP early.  Space is limited to 25 people.  Click the Register Button on the left. 

Copyright 2017 Great Outdoors Santa Barbara/Ventura County
"Great Outdoors" is a 501(c)7 non-profit organization. PO Box 21051, Santa Barbara, CA 93121

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