The unincorporated community of Paicines, formerly Tres Pinos, is located at 680 feet (207 m) above mean sea level (AMSL) in San Benito County, California along State Route 25. Guide signs along SR 25 say the community is 13 miles (21 km) south of Hollister. The community is at the intersection of Panoche Road and SR 25. Bolado County Park is just over three miles (5 km) north of the community and the site of the San Benito County Fair.
Hydrologic features in the area include Tres Pinos Creek, the San Benito River, and the Paicines Reservoir. The area is in the San Andreas Rift Zone area in proximity to the San Andreas Fault. Areas to the south and east are mountainous. The county line runs along the Gabilan Range.
Famous people associated with Paicines include Lieutenant General Janet C. Wolfenbarger, the highest-ranking woman in the United States Air Force; her parents Eldon and Shirley Libby reside in Paicines. Charlie Root, the famous Chicago Cubs pitcher and coach, retired there to a ranch. Actress Judy Garland (born Frances Ethel Gumm; June 10, 1922 – June 22, 1969) married her third husband, Sid Luft, at what was then known as The Law Ranch, now called The Paicines Ranch. Tiburcio Vásquez, a bandido who was active in the area.
The town of Paicines was originally located 5 miles north of the town of Tres Pinos. The opposite is true today.
The railroad was tasked to build a line to Tres Pinos. By 1873 they made it to Paicines but did not wish to continue building more line. So in 1874 the names of the two towns were switched so the railroad could say they had fulfilled their commitment to build a line all the way to Tres Pinos.
- Janet C. Wolfenbarger, Gilroy Dispatch (Gilroy, California), 20 May 2005 (accessed 10 December 2009).
- Our History
- "California's 20th Congressional District - Representatives & District Map". Civic Impulse, LLC. Retrieved September 24, 2014.
- Climate Summary for Paicines, California