This is the newest addition to the OVLC trail system as far as I know. A juicy grant gave us enough parking to land the space shuttle, and a nicely paved 1/8 of a mile for wheelchair access. Amazingly enough I saw my first wheelchair today, a nice lady from Ventura and her elderly mom who delighted in petting Luke. Old Baldwin road, just before the green waste facility.
Distance– Something for everyone, you can loop back in many spots. Basically one trail hugs the river while the other stays closer to Old Baldwin/Rice Road. Numerous east/west crossing trails allow you to make a loop of as little as a mile, or as much as 6 plus miles if you make it to the north-most parking lot.
The trail- well maintained, almost perfectly flat, single track in most spots. Meandering through what I’d call oak grassland/riparian with a little chaparral mixed in. Besides some spots with loose rocks where I suppose you could twist an ankle if you tried real hard, this is a very easy, mellow trail that is popular with kids, horses, old and young, occasional bikes too.
The plants- It’s January which is usually quiet anyway.. but its dry as a bone which isn’t helping much. Highlights include this amazing Chaparral Currant (Ribes Malvaceum).
Keep an eye out for their drooping pink cascades of flowers, there are at least half a dozen nice specimens out there, within 2 months you’ll barely notice them. An early Scarlet Bugler (Penstemon centranthifolius) and my first Blue Dicks (Dichelostemma capitatum) of the season. Manzanitas are in full bloom.. but they seem a bit thirsty and not as glorious as I’ve seen in past years. Ceanothus is just starting, another few weeks till these fragrant beauties take over.
Recap- One of Ojai’s more popular trails, something for everyone, watch out for the ubiquitous horse apples. Dog friendly, keep the leash close though. Oh, and Luke likes to roll around on the gross sewer caps….