Arana Gulch

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 Arana cows website - Crystal 

HOURS OF OPERATION: Summer (April through October) Sunrise to 7 p.m.
Winter (November through March) Sunrise to 4 p.m.

AVAILABLE FACILITIES: Closest restroom, phone and water at upper end of Santa Cruz Harbor.

TRAILS: The primary trail route in Arana Gulch provides a connection from Agnes Street to the upper harbor (less than one-half mile). Hiking and bicycling are allowed on this primary route. A footpath also encircles the southern meadow area. Please stay on trails. Arana Gulch features sensitive habitat areas that can be damaged by off-trail use.

Here's your TRAIL MAP!

DOG REGULATIONS: Dogs must be on leash at all times. Keep dogs on trails. Arana Gulch features sensitive habitat areas that can be damaged by dogs. Please be courteous and clean up after your pet.

PROHIBITED ACTIVITIES: Smoking or fires, camping, alcohol, wood gathering, collection of plants or animals, archery/hunting.


  • Frederick Street @ Broadway
  • Agnes Street @ Mentel Avenue
  • 7th Avenue @ Brommer Street.

PARKING: No on-site parking

  • Agnes Street - On-street parking on Agnes Street
  • Upper Harbor - Trail entrance to Arana Gulch located along the western boundary of the harbor storage yard


Arana Gulch features valuable habitats, including wetlands, central coast riparian scrub, central coast live oak riparian forest, and coastal terrace prairie. Approximately one-third of Arana Gulch features wetlands. The Arana Creek floodplain, located along the eastern boundary of the property, comprises most of the wetland acreage. There are also seasonal freshwater wetlands scattered throughout the upper grassland area.

Arana Gulch is one of few remaining sites within the County where the Santa Cruz tarplant, a state endangered species, exists. Historically, the Santa Cruz tarplant was widespread throughout the property, however, with the loss of grazing the tarplant declined. In recent years, the City of Santa Cruz has worked in cooperation with the California Department of Fish and Game, the California Native Plant Society, and other dedicated volunteers to successfully recover the tarplant.

 For more information about the restoration effort, visit here.

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