Tierra Redonda Mountain

Last updated
Tierra Redonda Mountain
Relief map of California.png
Red triangle with thick white border.svg
Tierra Redonda Mountain
Highest point
Elevation 2,070 ft (631 m)  NAVD 88 [2]
Coordinates 35°46′16″N120°59′09″W / 35.771021347°N 120.985935089°W / 35.771021347; -120.985935089 Coordinates: 35°46′16″N120°59′09″W / 35.771021347°N 120.985935089°W / 35.771021347; -120.985935089 [2]
Location San Luis Obispo County, California, U.S. [1]
Parent range Santa Lucia Range
Topo map USGS Tierra Redonda Mountain
Easiest route Trail hike

Tierra Redonda Mountain is a mountain in northwestern San Luis Obispo County, California. [1] It is in the eastern portion of the Santa Lucia Range, separated from the main ridge by the Nacimiento River.



The mountain is north of Lake Nacimiento, with the summit being about a mile and a half (two kilometers) from the shoreline near the northwestern extremity of the lake. It is about 18 miles (30 km) from the Pacific Ocean at San Simeon. The elevation of the summit is 2051 feet (625 m). The primary maintained public road to the mountain is Interlake Road, San Luis Obispo County G14 (also signed in nearby Monterey County as G14), which passes about 1.5 miles (2.5 kilometers) northeast of the summit. This road intersects U.S. Highway 101 at Paso Robles, about 20 miles (32 kilometers) to the southeast. Oak Shores Drive winds around the western portion of the mountain from a junction with G14 to the shore of Lake Nacimiento, and Tierra Redonda Road comes around from the east.

The mountain is part of a small island of Bureau of Land Management land, 320 acres (1.3 km2), entirely surrounded by private land. BLM has designated it as an Area of Critical Environmental Concern (ACEC), along with several other BLM holdings in the area (such as the Carrizo Plain and Cypress Mountain) due to the high concentration of unique, sensitive, and threatened species found in the vicinity, as well as for its singularly rich paleontological resources. This designation is in part because of encroaching development from the south, where private residences are being built on the shore of Lake Nacimiento, within the Oak Shores community. The region has also designated the region as open space in their General Plan. [3]

Natural setting

Primary plant communities represented around the mountain include chaparral and blue oak woodlands, although grasslands and unusual sand dune formations also occur. Within the ACEC there are several sensitive plant species, some endemic to the area. These include several species of Chorizanthe, among the most concentrated known anywhere, along with ribbonwood, Salinas Valley goldfields, San Luis Obispo County lupine, and the one-awned spineflower. [3]

While petroleum exploration is not presently occurring in the vicinity, the potential for oil and gas is considered by the BLM to be moderate. [3] The Vaqueros Formation, which outcrops significantly on the mountain, accounting for its famous fossil beds, is an oil-bearing unit at the South Cuyama and Russell Ranch Oil Fields to the southwest, and the large, prolific San Ardo Oil Field, one of the most active in California, is only ten miles to the northwest, along U.S. 101. [4]

Historical Facts

The early pioneers of the area considered climbing to the summit of Tierra Redonda ("Terra Donda") a destination for a picnic. An American flag on a flagpole was visible from the lowlands. It was unknown who placed the flag or who replaced it when it became tattered.

Related Research Articles

Lake Nacimiento lake in California

Lake Nacimiento is an 18-mile (29 km) long lake on the Nacimiento River in northern San Luis Obispo County, California. The lake contains many arms including Snake Creek and Dip Creek, nearer the dam, and the central Las Tablas and Franklin Creeks. Because of the dragon-like shape created by the positions of these arms, it is sometimes referred to as Dragon Lake. The lake can fill quickly in the winter from river surges resulting from downpours upstream in the Santa Lucia Range so the level is not usually allowed to capacity until May 1 of each year.

Sierra Madre Mountains (California) mountain range

The Sierra Madre Mountains are a mountain range primarily in northern Santa Barbara County and extending into northwestern Ventura County in Southern California, western United States. It is a range of the Inner South Coast Ranges group, and is the southernmost reach of the California Coast Ranges, which are themselves part of the Pacific Coast Ranges of western North America.

Area codes 805 and 820 Area codes in central California, United States

Area codes 805 and 820 are California telephone area codes; 805 was originally split from area code 213 in 1957. They include most or all of the California counties of San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, Ventura, plus the southernmost portions of Monterey County.

The State Scenic Highway System in the U.S. state of California is a list of highways, mainly state highways, that have been designated by the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) as scenic highways. They are marked by the state flower, a California poppy, inside either a rectangle for state-maintained highways or a pentagon for county highways.

Santa Lucia Range mountain range on the central California coast of the USA

The Santa Lucia Mountains or Santa Lucia Range is a rugged mountain range in coastal central California, running from Carmel southeast for 140 miles (230 km) to the Cuyama River in San Luis Obispo County. The range is never more than 11 miles (18 km) from the coast. The range forms the steepest coastal slope in the contiguous United States. Cone Peak at 5,158 feet (1,572 m) tall and three miles (5 km) from the coast, is the highest peak in proximity to the ocean in the lower 48 United States. The range was a barrier to exploring the coast of central California for early Spanish explorers.

California Valley, California Unincorporated community in California, United States

California Valley is an unincorporated community located in the eastern part of San Luis Obispo County, California, in the northern portion of the Carrizo Plain.

Carrizo Plain

The Carrizo Plain (Obispeño: tšɨłkukunɨtš, "Place of the rabbits"; is a large enclosed grassland plain, approximately 50 miles long and up to 15 miles across, in southeastern San Luis Obispo County, California, about 100 miles northwest of Los Angeles. It contains the 246,812-acre Carrizo Plain National Monument, and it is the largest single native grassland remaining in California. It includes Painted Rock in the Carrizo Plain Rock Art Discontiguous District, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. In 2012 it was further designated a National Historic Landmark due to its archeological value. The San Andreas Fault cuts across the plain.

Cuyama, California census-designated place in California, United States

Cuyama is a census-designated place in Santa Barbara County. California. It is located in the Cuyama Valley, near the Carrizo Plain. The Cuyama River runs adjacent to the town, flowing west towards the Pacific Ocean. Cuyama is surrounded by many apricot, peach, and plum orchards. The ZIP Code is 93254, and the community is inside area code 805. The population was 57 at the 2010 census. The name "Cuyama" comes from an Indian village named for the Chumash word kuyam, meaning "clam" or "freshwater mollusk".

California State Route 166 Highway in California

State Route 166 is a state highway in the U.S. state of California. It connects the Central Coast to the southern San Joaquin Valley, running from State Route 1 in Guadalupe and through Santa Maria in Santa Barbara County to State Route 99 in Mettler in Kern County.

Guadalupe-Nipomo Dunes dune system in California

Guadalupe-Nipomo Dunes is the largest remaining dune system south of San Francisco and the second largest in the U.S. state of California. It encompasses an 18-mile (29 km) stretch of coastline on the Central Coast of California and extends from southern San Luis Obispo County to northern Santa Barbara County.

Nacimiento River river in the United States of America

The Nacimiento River is a 64.8-mile-long (104.3 km) river in southern Monterey County and northern San Luis Obispo County, California. A large portion of the river's run is on military reservations. The river's upper reaches are inside Fort Hunter Liggett, Lake Nacimiento is in the middle and the lower reaches are inside Camp Roberts. It is the largest tributary of the Salinas River in terms of streamflow.

Santa Margarita Lake lake in California, USA

Santa Margarita Lake, also called Salinas Reservoir, is a lake several miles southeast of the town of Santa Margarita in San Luis Obispo County, California. The lake was created by the building of Salinas Dam on the southern end of the Salinas River, very close to the river's origin in the Santa Lucia Range.

Cuyama River river in the United States of America

The Cuyama River is a 118-mile-long (190 km) river in southern San Luis Obispo County, northern Santa Barbara County, and northern Ventura County, in the U.S. state of California. It joins the Sisquoc River forming the Santa Maria River. The river's name comes from an Indian village named for the Chumash word kuyam, meaning "clam" or "freshwater mollusk".

New River (Oregon) river in Oregon, U.S.

The New River is a stream, about 8 miles (13 km) long, on the southern coast of the U.S. state of Oregon. It begins slightly north of Floras Lake, at the confluence of the lake outlet and Floras Creek, and runs north behind a foredune until entering the Pacific Ocean between Bandon and Port Orford.

Nacimiento-Fergusson Road Road in California

Nacimiento-Fergusson Road is the only road across the Santa Lucia Range in the Central Coast of California, connecting California State Route 1 and the Big Sur coast to U.S. Route 101 and the Salinas Valley. The road is well-paved and maintained over its length, but is winding and has precipitous drops. It is widely regarded as one of the best motorcycling roads in central California due to its ocean views and forest setting.

Area of Critical Environmental Concern

Areas of Critical Environmental Concern (ACEC) is a conservation ecology program in the Western United States, managed by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM). The ACEC program was conceived in the 1976 Federal Lands Policy and Management Act (FLPMA), which established the first conservation ecology mandate for the BLM. The FLPMA mandate directs the BLM to protect important riparian corridors, threatened and endangered species habitats, cultural and archeological resources, as well as unique scenic landscapes that the agency assesses as in need of special management attention.

Cuyama Valley valley in California, United States

The Cuyama Valley is a valley along the Cuyama River in central California, in northern Santa Barbara, southern San Luis Obispo, southwestern Kern, and northwestern Ventura counties. It is about two hours driving time from both Los Angeles and the Santa Barbara area.

Bee Rock, California Unincorporated community in California, United States

Bee Rock is an unincorporated community in northern San Luis Obispo County, central California, United States.

Sleeping Giant Wilderness Study Area

Sleeping Giant Wilderness Study Area is a non-motorized recreation area located on the west side of the Missouri River and Holter Lake located about 30 miles (48 km) north of Helena, Montana. Designated as a wilderness study area in 1981, the Sleeping Giant Wilderness Study Area contains approximately 6,666 acres (2,698 ha) of nearly roadless land, about half of which is forested. A portion of the Lewis and Clark National Historic Trail is contained inside the study area.

Oak Shores, California census-designated place in California, United States

Oak Shores is a census-designated place in northern San Luis Obispo County, central California.


  1. 1 2 3 "Tierra Redonda Mountain". Geographic Names Information System . United States Geological Survey . Retrieved 2009-08-03.
  2. 1 2 "2051=Lynch". NGS data sheet. U.S. National Geodetic Survey . Retrieved 2009-08-05.
  3. 1 2 3 "Chapter 11 - ACECs Coast Management Area - Tierra Redonda". U.S. Department of the Interior Bureau of Land Management. Retrieved 2008-07-14.
  4. "Provenance of oil in southern Cuyama basin, California". American Association of Petroleum Geologists. OSTI   6591388.Cite journal requires |journal= (help)