Emergency personnel were dispatched at about 12:45 p.m. to the scene of the fall, about 500 yards west of the Gaviota Pier, fire Capt. Dave Zaniboni said.
They found the victim, a woman in her 20s, who had fallen about six feet onto a rock ledge and was stranded on a rock outcropping just off the beach below.
Crews were unable to reach her from shore, so a county helicopter with a hoist was called in to assist in the rescue.
After retrieving the woman, the helicopter flew her to nearby Fire Station 18, at 17200 Calle Mariposa Reina Road, where it landed and she was transferred to an American Medical Response ambulance and taken to Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital.
The woman appeared to have suffered moderate injuries in the fall. Her name was not disclosed.