Mugu Beach at Point Mugu State Park

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Mugu Beach is the first publicly accessible beach area south of Naval Base Ventura County off of PCH, located adjacent to the prominent Mugu Rock. For the most part this is the most quickly accessible beach to Camarillo and Conejo Valley residents. There is paid parking ($12 for the day last time I was there) as well as parking available on PCH. Not a big beach, not a fancy beach, but quite convenient. The more popular Sycamore Cove Beach is just 3.3 miles southeast of Mugu Beach.

LOCAL AREA BEACHES STRETCHING FROM OXNARD TO MALIBU

Sycamore Cove Beach in Point Mugu

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Sycamore Cove Beach is located at 9000 Pacific Coast Highway in Point Mugu. This beach is one of the closest and easiest to get to from the Conejo Valley and Camarillo via Las Posas and PCH.

Sycamore Cove Beach in the background. Sycamore Canyon Campground entrance on left.

Sycamore Cove Beach in the background. Sycamore Canyon Campground entrance on left.

The beach is popular with families looking to barbecue and enjoy quick and easy access to the beach. There are also porta-johns and restrooms available. Very limited parking on PCH (read the signs carefully as you don't want to get ticketed) but plenty of paid parking available (generally $12 to $14 for the day).

Dogs on a leash are allowed in day use areas, campgrounds and beaches within Point Mugu State Park. Dogs are not allowed on backcountry trails or dirt roads.

A view of Sycamore Cove Beach from the south.

A view of Sycamore Cove Beach from the south.

On the northwest end of the beach you can walk underneath PCH to the other side of PCH, where Sycamore Canyon Campground is located. From there, you can take Sycamore Canyon up to Newbury Park (about eight miles).

PCH is above. You can safely get from Sycamore Cove to Sycamore Canyon under this bridge (though at high tide can be a challenge). Beats risking your life crossing PCH!

PCH is above. You can safely get from Sycamore Cove to Sycamore Canyon under this bridge (though at high tide can be a challenge). Beats risking your life crossing PCH!

Due north of Sycamore Cove Beach is Thornhill Broome Beach/Campground, which along with Sycamore Cove and Sycamore Canyon is part of Point Mugu State Park. Across from Thornhill Broome is the large sand dune that makes for some fun climbing.

The humongous sand dune walking distance from Sycamore Cove.

The humongous sand dune walking distance from Sycamore Cove.

Visit www.parks.ca.gov/?page_id=630 for more information.

Sycamore Canyon Campground in Point Mugu State Park

Point Mugu State Park is located at 9000 W. Pacific Coast Highway, Malibu, offering a variety of beach, hiking and camping opportunities.

The Sycamore Canyon Campground is north of PCH, offering 58 tent/RV spaces along with drinking water, restrooms, showers and fire rings. There are also 4 tent spaces available for "Hike and Bike" campers. Pets are allowed on leash in the campground. Fees as of April 2017 are $45/night and $10/night for Hike and Bike spots. Visit ReserveAmerica.com at THIS LINK to make reservations.

This campground is across the street from Sycamore Cove Beach, also part of Point Mugu State Park and just around the corner from the Thornhill Broome Campsites on the beach, the giant sand dune across from Thornhill Broome, and Mugu Rock.

Sycamore Canyon has trails galore to explore, going all the way up, eight miles, to Newbury Park, if you so choose. Located just steps from the Sycamore Canyon Fire Road trailhead is the "Scenic Trail," a moderate trail with some steps that gets you to stunning views of everything mentioned above - beaches, Mugu Rock, sand dune, etc.

The Scenic Trail connects with the Overlook Fire Road, which continues on and eventually connects with the top of the Ray Miller Trail, then on towards the La Jolla Valley. It is lush and stunning when green in late winter/early spring. It gets pretty brown and dry up here towards last spring, summer and fall months. But the great views towards the Pacific never change.

Mugu Peak in Point Mugu State Park

The 1,266 foot elevation Mugu Peak is at the western edge of the Santa Monica Mountains, in Point Mugu State Park. The peak provides views stretching from the Malibu Lagoon/Naval Base Ventura County and Channel Islands on the west, Thornhill Broome Beach on the east, La Jolla Valley on the north and more.

There are multiple ways of getting to the peak. The most direct (and albeit steepest) ascent is via the Chumash Trail, accessible across from the Naval Base shooting range (yes, sometimes you will hear rounds). The Chumash Trail is accessible off of PCH at this link. Look for the left turn into a small dirt parking area that has space for perhaps 15 or so cars.

The 7/10ths of a mile hike up the Chumash Trail is pretty brutal, but I've seen all shapes, sizes and ages making it up at varying paces.

Turn left after reaching the top of the Chumash Trail. Veering left continues the Chumash Trail towards La Jolla Valley. Veer right up the really steep hill for the most direct route to Mugu Peak.

Turn left after reaching the top of the Chumash Trail. Veering left continues the Chumash Trail towards La Jolla Valley. Veer right up the really steep hill for the most direct route to Mugu Peak.

The initial Mugu Peak Trail section is quite steep, then you plateau, then the remainder is more moderate, seen above.

The initial Mugu Peak Trail section is quite steep, then you plateau, then the remainder is more moderate, seen above.

The Mugu Lagoon within Naval Base Ventura County is a colorful sight from throughout the hike and at the top of Mugu Peak.

The Mugu Lagoon within Naval Base Ventura County is a colorful sight from throughout the hike and at the top of Mugu Peak.

Looking northwest from Mugu Peak you will see the the 1,421 foot Laguna Peak, which contains a Naval satellite tracking station.

Looking northwest from Mugu Peak you will see the the 1,421 foot Laguna Peak, which contains a Naval satellite tracking station.

Views southeast with Thornhill Broome Beach in the background.

Views southeast with Thornhill Broome Beach in the background.

So you've reached the top of Mugu Peak, enjoyed the panoramic views, saluted the flag on display, checked out the toolbox under the flag with logbooks and other items, the next choice is, do you go back the way you came or do you take another route? If you head back the direction you came, the title mileage of the hike is about 2 1/2 miles of mostly steep up/downhills.

Well, if you continue in the direction of Thornhill Broome Beach (southeast), you can continue on the Mugu Peak Trail, which is several miles traversing around the southern, then western sections of Mugu Peak. This is my preferred approach as the footing is much easier and your total mileage is roughly 4 miles. Plus, you are treated to additional views that are just beautiful.

Map snippet courtesy of California State Parks.

Map snippet courtesy of California State Parks.

Another view of Thornhill Broome Beach and the   large sand dune   across PCH from the southeastern edge of the Mugu Peak Trail.

Another view of Thornhill Broome Beach and the large sand dune across PCH from the southeastern edge of the Mugu Peak Trail.

You can also get to Mugu Peak from the La Jolla Canyon Loop Trail.

Thornhill Broome Campground in Point Mugu State Park

Thornhill Broome Family Campground is located at 9000 Pacific Coast Highway in Point Mugu State Park. The beachfront campground offers 68 tent/RV spaces. There are no hookups for RVs or flush toilets; just chemical toilets and cold outside showers. However, you are camping ON THE BEACH! Gotta love that!

Sites have picnic tables and fire rings. Pets are allowed on leash in the campground. Fees as of June 2017 are $35/night. Visit ReserveAmerica.com at THIS LINK to make reservations. Be aware, however, that summer months in particular book up way in advance.

Keep in mind that there is no shade when you camp at the beach. So if you don't have an RV, be sure to bring a canopy and/or umbrella.

Thornhill Broome Beach is across from the gigantic sand dune that provides for a great workout and views. And due east is Sycamore Cove and Sycamore Canyon...which of course is the most direct path...albeit by foot or bike...to Newbury Park and the Conejo Valley from the beach.

And of course the Sycamore Canyon Campground is across from Sycamore Cove, if you're looking for additional camping possibilities.

Traveling southeast on PCH from Oxnard/Camarillo; this sign tells you you're just about there.

Traveling southeast on PCH from Oxnard/Camarillo; this sign tells you you're just about there.

The cool, massive sand dune across from Thornhill Broome Beach (be careful crossing PCH!).

The cool, massive sand dune across from Thornhill Broome Beach (be careful crossing PCH!).