Normally when we meet every 18 months or so, my girlfriends and I find a road or trail race to anchor the trip. Afterall, when we first met about 18 years ago in North Carolina, our dedication to fitness is what brought us together. But with one of us heading into knee surgery as soon as we returned and another having just healed from injury (and not me for a change!), a 10k or even a 5k wasn’t an option this round.
But hiking was, and we universally agreed while sitting poolside the morning after our sip ‘n’ cycle tour to head over to Skofield Park outside Santa Barbara city limits and climb Rattlesnake Canyon. It's near the Los Padres National Forest and well worth the trip, especially if you luck out and head up while the marine layer still hangs low.
The only other piece of information I'd mention is that I saw a lot of poison oak, some of which was impossible to avoid along narrower ledges of the path. If you have a heightened sensitivity to the poisonous plant, beware. All in all, it's a great little inland trail near a monestary. Parking is actually before you hit the entrance at a stone bridge. I missed it completely b/c the cars were parked farther up on a much narrower strip.