Two Rulings Reject Hollister Ranch Owners Latest Efforts

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Two Rulings Reject Hollister Ranch Owners Latest Efforts
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Hollister Ranch (Photo: Gaviota Coast Conservancy)

By edhat staff

Two recent court rulings have rejected the Hollister Ranch Owner Association's attempt to disqualify a local judge and overturn a February 2019 decision.

This week the California Court of Appeal issued a one-sentence ruling rejecting an appeal filed by Hollister Ranch. Hollister sought to overturn a decision in February of this year that found a proposed Settlement Agreement was unfair to the public.

In a separate ruling issued last week, a San Luis Obispo Judge also rejected a second motion by Hollister to disqualify Santa Barbara County Superior Court Judge Colleen K. Sterne, who has presided over the case for the past five years, based on arguments that Judge Sterne was biased.

Currently, four state agencies: the Coastal Commission, Coastal Conservancy, State Parks and State Lands Commission, are updating a plan for public access to all 8.5 miles of Hollister Ranch beaches. Hollister Ranch landowners have argued that public access should be banned or restricted.

Lead Counsel Ellison Folk of the Gaviota Coast Trail Alliance, an ad hoc alliance of coastal and environmental justice community organizations, stated, “The Hollister Ranch owners keep finding new ways to lose in their fight to prevent public access to the California coast.” Phil McKenna, the Alliance’s Chairperson, explained, “The Alliance is committed to securing reasonable public access to Hollister Ranch’s beaches and the completion of the Coastal Trail.”

Legislation proposed last week by Santa Barbara Assemblymember Monique Limón sets deadlines for that process and consequences if plans for access to Hollister Ranch are delayed.

A series of development permits requested by Hollister owners have been appealed, and the Coastal Commission has an open enforcement case against Hollister for driving on the beach.

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kegging1 Mar 30, 2019 03:54 PM
Two Rulings Reject Hollister Ranch Owners Latest Efforts

It makes me so sad that my kids will not get to see the Ranch like it has always been. I wonder if any of the people like this trail guy or surfrider foundation realize what they are really doing. Its all Greed and entitlement. If you go to lone pine is there a shuttle to the top of mt. whitney!? No. A trail. ? Yes. And guess what everyone a trail already exists. Its called the beach. Wait for low tide and walk. Makes me sick to my stomach to think people who Havnt even tryed doing that are trying to ruin such a beautiful area with a trail for the masses. What about all the areas in malibu that you have to walk into beacuse of homes and limited access? Its not for everyone and shouldn’t be. If you cant boat or walk the beach stay at a state park and enjoy the view. It is private land but also a working cattle ranch like much of the coast. Crowds of hikers should not be hiking through a cattle operation for many reasons and for both sides. I just don’t get the thinking of people who want to see it like orange county. Please please please HROA fight to keep it as is. From a non owner sb county resident.

Eggs Ackley Mar 30, 2019 08:57 AM
Two Rulings Reject Hollister Ranch Owners Latest Efforts

Demanding access to a private road simply for the sake of access and no other is woefully shortsighted and insufficiently thought through. The beaches at HR are no more unique or difficult to access than much of the coast between UCSB and Gaviota State Beach. There are many who would like to visit the unique historic lighthouse at Point Concepćion which is on publicly owned federal land. Where's the hue and cry about access to this important and unique historic landmark? In response to those who claim it's too far out to trash I suggest Monique Limon send a staff member on hike to headwaters of Mission canyon, or 2 hours up Santa Paula canyon to document the dirty diapers cigarette butts and graffiti. Proof that if there is access by those who don't cherish the land, IT WILL BE TRASHED, despite its apparent remoteness. I tired of bringing rubber gloves and packing out nasty trash, socks, tampons fished from the creek, scrubbing graffiti, debriding initials carved in sandstone, and painting over initials carved in trees. Will her legislation include funds for monitoring and cleanup? Will there be an environmental impact report that isn't just a whitewash? There will be impacts that cannot be mitigated and hence will violate CEQA. It is not in the public interest to increase the inevitable degradation that will come with increased access. Defer to the will of the people, not a few special interest groups, such as Surfrider foundation and the coastal trail cabal which prioritizes access over the environment.

Red Creek Mar 29, 2019 08:22 AM
Two Rulings Reject Hollister Ranch Owners Latest Efforts

A simple hiking and bicycling trail along the bluffs from a parking area near Gaviota would allow access and cut down on the possibility of large crowds or trash accumulating in Hollister Ranch. Most medium and long distance hikers and cyclists are respectful of the areas they traverse and visit.

tagdes Mar 29, 2019 01:43 PM
Two Rulings Reject Hollister Ranch Owners Latest Efforts

Along the bluffs...have you ever been in Hollister Ranch? It's a windy road across arroyos and you can't even get to the first beach, Caliente along the bluffs. For surfing Sacate and Gatos are 3 and 4 miles in and it's private property. Maybe we could get Jackson Browne to pay for it.

letmego Mar 29, 2019 09:20 AM
Two Rulings Reject Hollister Ranch Owners Latest Efforts

This might be the happy medium. I like to think positively about my fellow humans - but the amount of trash I find around town is disheartening. OTOH, I've spent time hiking in the wilderness, and it does seem that long distance hikers and cyclists are far more respectful of the areas and know to "pack out".

millimesa Mar 28, 2019 10:07 PM
Two Rulings Reject Hollister Ranch Owners Latest Efforts

Same feelings, protect the ranch from public catastrophe. Allowing 100 people per day in year 1 and increasing up to 500 people per day at year 5 would turn Gaviota State Park into a parking garage and the road leading to the ranch into a trash canned lined PCH.

a-1573701077 Mar 28, 2019 09:42 PM
Two Rulings Reject Hollister Ranch Owners Latest Efforts

I used to own a 1/12 but sold it years ago. I considered It a beach pass and I really Didn’t feel i fit there because I was an intermediate surfer at best. I did enjoy driving on the beach and seeing how pristine the rest of the Ranch was, it did seem quite odd. I think banning driving there makes sense. I also am against allowing public access. The Public simply ruins nature spots, I’m sorry. Rincon is a complete zoo. Refugio a cacophony of different radio stations and dirty diapers and smelly bbq’s and RVs. Ditto for Jalama. HR did at least one thing right- they kept the place looking substantially what it would’ve looked like 13,000 years ago when the first humans arrived. Yes, the surf spots are epic but they can be accessed by boat. I never went back, but was always hoping they’d prevail and keep the public from trashing a pristine beach, which is exactly what The Mob will do.

a-1573701077 Mar 28, 2019 05:13 PM
Two Rulings Reject Hollister Ranch Owners Latest Efforts

I always thought that the public could not be completely closed off from the beach. There had to be access. But they do this in Hope Ranch too! You can't get to the beach there either. I do not understand how that is even legal. It's one thing to own a home on the beach but to be allowed to not have any rights of way for the public? CRAZY. They shoudl go after Hope Ranch next.

a-1573701077 Mar 29, 2019 09:29 PM
Two Rulings Reject Hollister Ranch Owners Latest Efforts

730- you missed my point. Surf rider Foundarion after all is the one bringing the shot and also Hope Ranch beach is accessible already from Hendrys or more Mesa whereas Hollister is very remote and inaccessible and that’s after a 1hr drive from town.

a-1573701077 Mar 29, 2019 10:01 AM
Two Rulings Reject Hollister Ranch Owners Latest Efforts

Not everyone cares about surf spots, beaches should not have access just for surfers but for everyone who likes the ocean, regardless of whether or not they surf. Access shouldn't be determined just by whether or not there are great surf spots that is dumb.

a-1573701077 Mar 29, 2019 10:01 AM
Two Rulings Reject Hollister Ranch Owners Latest Efforts

Not everyone cares about surf spots, beaches should not have access just for surfers but for everyone who likes the ocean, regardless of whether or not they surf. Access shouldn't be determined just by whether or not there are great surf spots that is dumb.

a-1573701077 Mar 28, 2019 09:45 PM
Two Rulings Reject Hollister Ranch Owners Latest Efforts

Hope Ranch doesn’t have any surf spots, let alone 7 epic surf spots like Hollister, and besides you can easily get there from More Mesa. No comparison to Hollister. Better off driving to Hendry’s and having all your stuff.

Bug Girl Mar 28, 2019 11:14 AM
Two Rulings Reject Hollister Ranch Owners Latest Efforts

I always wondered how they got away with driving on the beach at Hollister. And if we get to go there, I'm so excited to start surf fishing again! I bet there's great bites out there!

PitMix Mar 28, 2019 01:34 PM
Two Rulings Reject Hollister Ranch Owners Latest Efforts

The Hollister owners stopped claiming that limiting access was preserving the environment after it was publicized that they were driving on the beach. I wonder what those 1/12th owner parcels providing surf access but no dwelling rights will be worth if it opens up to the public?

PitMix Mar 28, 2019 11:05 AM
Two Rulings Reject Hollister Ranch Owners Latest Efforts

Monique Limon is proposing a bill to force them to reach an agreement to provide public access by 2020. Way to go Monique! It would be nice if I could one day see those world class surf breaks before I die. Can't surf any more, but would like to see them.

Eggs Ackley Mar 30, 2019 09:06 AM
Two Rulings Reject Hollister Ranch Owners Latest Efforts

Cant find a friend with a boat? There are minus tides 4/13-4/18. Take a walk up to Razors And check that off your bucket list. Then we can have John Wiley buzz the beach for a few photos. People seem to love his pics. Access for the sake of access is soooo selfish.

a-1573701077 Mar 28, 2019 09:55 AM
Two Rulings Reject Hollister Ranch Owners Latest Efforts

Step by step we will reclaim the coast that we ALL deserve to enjoy, not just the rich who have side-stepped public access laws and continue to fight tooth and nail for that which they are not entitled to. Thank you to all involved.

oceandrew Mar 28, 2019 05:11 PM
Two Rulings Reject Hollister Ranch Owners Latest Efforts

If you want to hike there below the high water mark you are free to do so... no one is preventing you. Oh, except the geography of the area. You can only access the high water mark by trespassing on private property or run the risk of being caught by the tide.

Sam The Dog Mar 28, 2019 04:08 PM
Two Rulings Reject Hollister Ranch Owners Latest Efforts

You, and many here, have a poor understanding of the case. There has been no side-stepping. If CA wants the land to create a public access they could condemn it via eminent domain. But that would be crazy expensive and only benefit a very very small percentage of Californias population.

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