JOURNAL : April 25, 2009
|Series||Hiking the Santa Margarita River Trail|
The Santa Margarita trail follows its namesake river through the Santa Margarita River Canyon just north of Fallbrook, California. It's a leisurely day hike through a lovely desert oasis.
From the 15 freeway take Mission Road west until well into Fallbrook. A couple of block past the intersection of Mission Road and Main Avenue take Pico Avenue/De Luz Road north. After about a mile on De Luz, turn right on Sandia Creek Road (yum, watermelon creek!). Another mile and there's a dusty parking lot on the right, just before a bridge. See the map at the bottom of the page.
Hunt, June & Jasper
Our friends June and Hunt invited Jennifer and I on this pleasant afternoon walk. Our German Shepherds Jasper and Windsong nosed many friendly dogs along the trail.
Jasper heads over for a drink...
Jennifer tries the water
After a few hundred yards the river hugs the trail closely. Shady trees create a welcome respite from the inexorable Southern California sun. Swimmable pools collect often and the temptation to jump in the cool, refreshing water is often overpowering.
Rattlesnake on the TrailView All Sizes
The shaking of its maraca alerted us to the presence of this rattlesnake more than the sight of it would have. As you can see, this pit viper was shrewdly camouflaged against casual observation.
Santa Margarita River CanyonView All Sizes
Another denizen of the desert, this swift lizard has a similar brown stripe pattern
About a half mile the trail branches off and one fork lopes over dry hill with a single shady tree at the top and down into the forest again. Embedded deep into the riverbank was a rusted but hardy 1957 Ford Country Squire station wagon.
A 1957 Ford Country SquireView All Sizes
Jennifer looks out over the canyon.
A huge boulder on the trail
On the way back we lounged about on the smooth rocks and dabbled in the cool water. The Santa Margarita river is a great spot for a family picnic. Bring swimwear!
Windsong & Kanoa
Santa Margarita River Canyon
About this day
April 25, 2009
Get new travel info, adventures and photography in your inbox!