HIKE WENDY TRAIL TO WATERFALLS, Newbury Park, California:
Submitted by Jeffrey Scott Hanssen
All the rain we’ve been getting has made the countryside very lush. My son, John, and I, stricken with cabin fever, decided to get out for a hike on this beautiful, sunny day, the last day of 2010. We weren’t the only ones, because there were about 50 cars parked at the trailhead. Our destination was the waterfalls about 1.8 miles in. The trail was a little soggy in places, but easily passable. We were quite surprised when we came upon a rattlesnake in the middle of the trail, a small one, about 2 1/2 feet. I had always operated under the theory that snakes hibernate in winter. Now I know differently. He was a little lethargic though. We waited about a minute until he slowly slithered off the trail. This was a wonderful short hike. The falls exhibited a healthy flow due to the recent rains, but there’s usually some water, even in dry years. The return hike was uneventful – no snakes!
Directions & Tips:
Park on Potrero Rd. at the end of Wendy Dr. in Newbury Park. You will have to go up and down trail a couple of times before you get to the falls, but the only real steep portion occurs near the beginning, just before you get to the windmill. This being a pretty wet year, you will have to negotiate a stream crossing (rock-hopping) at the bottom of the canyon. The spur trail to the falls in not too well marked, though I think there is a sign. After you cross the stream, continue up the trail until you get to the first switchback. Continue straight on the spur trail, only a few hundred yards to the falls. Be cautious climbing over rocks to get to the base of the falls.