By: Paul S. Cilwa Viewed: 7/23/2018
Occurred: 6/22/2018
Topics/Keywords: #California #EscondidoCanyon #Travel Page Views: 124
Keith and I hike past celebrity homes to a hidden waterfall.

This morning Keith awoke (relatively) early so we could go on a hike without the kids. I had dicovered the existence of Escondido Canyon Waterfall, and, even though the long-standing drought meant the waterfall wouldn't actually be flowing, I thought the hike itself would make the trip worthwhile.

When Escondido Falls is flowing strong, it is flat out one of the finest waterfalls in the area. The waterfall has an easy-to-reach lower tier that is 50 feet tall and a hard-to-reach upper tier thatís 150 feet tall and stunning in optimum conditions.

We would aim at the lower tier, whatever there might be of it.

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Just a short way past Paradise Cove, there's a small parking lot on Winding Way, just off the Pacific Coast Highway. Turn left onto Winding Way and an immediate left into the parking lot. There's a sign; you can't miss it. The lot has spaces for only around 16 vehicles; it is full, you'll have to find a spot on the PCH and make your way from there&ellip;but be careful and watch for the plentiful "no parking" signs on the PCH.

The first 8/10ths of a mile is just from the parking lot to the actual trailhead. This distance is traveled alongside a road. Why couldn't we just drive to the trailhead?

It's because Escondido Canyon is prime real estate, occupied by homes of the wealthy, mostly celebrities. To preserve their privacy, they made the road private, open to residents and their guests (and servants) only. But one of them, Edward Albert, son of Green Acress Eddie Albert, donated land to the county to make a park. So we can't drive to it, but we can walk to it…

…passing homes like these.

I recognized this home from a magazine article: It's where Britney Spears lives.

Finally we got to the trailhead, as marked by this sign. The trail never got very steep, and was an easy stroll for nearly every step.

Wildflowers were abundant.

Finally, we reached where the waterfall would be, had any water been falling. You can see where the main cascade would be (to the left) and also the trickle that still runs (to the right).

The deep green ribbon marks Escondido Canyon Creek, the trail we took to the waterfall.

Almost back to the car: A chorus line of finches bids farewell.