Monday, February 13, 2012

Day 454: Placerita Falls - Placerita Canyon Natural Area


Day #454 * Hike #513 * New Track #464
Saturday February 11, 2012
Placerita Falls - Santa Clarita, Ca

Placerita Canyon Natural Area
My Tripometer: 1 Hours * 2.25 Miles * +275 Feet

 Trailhead- Parking off Placerita Canyon Road

From the 5 Freeway in LA County, take the 14 Freeway North for only a few miles.  Exit on Placerita Canyon Road and head East.  About two miles up will be the park entrance.  For today's hike, keep going east on Placerita Canyon Road for another couple of miles.  Look to the right and you will notice the small dirt parking lot.  Park here and begin.

 A chill picnic area

At the trailhead you will have two options.  You can either take the single track trail down and to your right or proceed straight along the dirt road.  Either way will bring you to this same central spot.  From here you can follow the Canyon Trail back to the main parking area which I do completely recommend.  There are owls and bald eagles there if I recall.  Day 279: Oak of the Golden Dream 

 Which way do I go?

The waterfall is only about a mile from here and being that Alyssa just finished a soccer game and the sun was nearing the horizon, we chose the waterfall trail.  In Lancaster earlier today, the windchills were probably in the low 30's; very cold for us Southern Californians!  It was a mild 50 degrees with less wind in Santa Clarita, but there was drizzle.  Actually, I'm quite surprised the family joined me on this one.

 Easy going trail, lots of shade if it were hot...
In the Summer Time this area does get brutally warm!

 I'm itching right now thinking about it!

Seriously, when I went off trail last week, I got the itchies.  I think I've come to realize that I am not just allergic to poison oak, but I am susceptible to any living branch that scratches me.  I really have no business trespassing through the wild...

 The Happy Family accompanying me on Day 454

 Cool rocks along the trail

 This is a grey bushy squirrel

I didn't realize until after that my camera was on the wrong setting.  Many of my pictures turned out like this.  Guess I'm lucky to share what I have.  I thought these plump rodents were neat.  There were many of them running around...

 The Waterfall?!

 Looking back at the wife and kids...

Near the end, Jessi got the jeepers creepers.  The trail was narrowing and became part of the overflow wash.  She was concerned with a possible flash flood.  It was drizzling but I can't imagine that this river was soon to flow a strong current; there was barely a waterfall!  That said, the trail did go up a bit further and it would take some tricky footing to reach the real waterfall.  A couple ahead of me said it was only 20 feet further but being that it was slippery and my family turned back, I elected to run after them.  It seems like nearly every time lately I am coming up just short of the real action.  I suppose it's better to be safe than sorry; although if something tragic did happen, maybe they would make a movie about me...  No thanks; I'd rather live with all my body parts...

 Many Woodpeckers; this is the best shot I could get...



  1. You sure have a gift for doing waterfall hikes when the waterfalls are dry, don't you? ;D

    I hiked to Placerita Canyon from the Sylmar side nearly two years ago. Water was low, but flowing.

  2. No water?! A couple months ago I highlighted at least four awesome waterfalls dropping like the Niagra. Of course, I was in New Zealand :).

    --I thought that there would be more water at Placerita, you know; it was raining that day. It is what it is. It's sometimes hard to figure out where I'm going to be going each day so I guess it's the luck of the draw...




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