The Transverse Ranges of southern California are a region of active transpression on the western margin of North America that hosts some of the world's highest uplift rates at the Ventura anticline. Yet, the manner in which rock uplift rates change along strike from Ventura to the westernmost Transverse Ranges and the structures that may be responsible for this uplift remain unclear. Here, we quantified rock uplift rates within the westernmost 60 km of the Transverse Ranges by obtaining new age constraints from raised beach and shoreface deposits from marine terraces along the Gaviota coast. Twelve radiocarbon (seven sites) and eight luminescence (six sites) ages, ranging from ca. 50 to 40 k.y. B.P. and ca. 56 to 43 ka, respectively, consistently suggest that the first emergent terrace dates to marine isotope stage (MIS) 3, rather than MIS 5a as previously reported for the western Gaviota coast. These younger ages yield rock uplift rates between 0.8 ± 0.3 and 1.8 ± 0.4 m/k.y., i.e., over five times higher than previous estimates for this region. The spatial distribution of rock uplift rates and the abrupt along-strike changes in marine terrace elevations favor a regional tectonic model with a step-wise change in rock uplift across the south branch of the Santa Ynez fault. The south branch of the Santa Ynez fault appears to separate two regional tectonic blocks, characterized by rock uplift rates of ∼1.3–1.6 m/k.y. to the east and slightly lower rates to the west (∼0.8–1.4 m/k.y.). Our observations suggest that coastal rock uplift is primarily accommodated by deeply rooted far-field structures such as the offshore Pitas Point–North Channel fault system and the Santa Ynez fault, and that smaller through-going structures impart second-order controls and locally accommodate short-wavelength (<10-km-long strike length) deformation. These results imply that although the rates of rock uplift decline westward along strike, the westernmost portion of the western Transverse Ranges nonetheless accommodates relatively high (>1 m/k.y.) rock uplift rates at a significant distance (>50 km) from the rapidly uplifting (6–7 m/k.y.) Ventura anticline, and >100 km from the prominent restraining bend (“Big Bend”) in the San Andreas fault. The new constraints on the geometry of Quaternary-active structures and regional rates of fault-related deformation have implications for regional earthquake source models and seismic hazard assessment in the highly populated southern California coast region.

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