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Uvas Canyon County Park

Healthy Trails Walk, Feb. 21, 2009

On February 21, 2009, docent Cait Hutnik led a Healthy Trail Hike up the Waterfall Loop Trail at Uvas Canyon County Park.

Cait explaining the Healthy Trails program and describing the hike

Start of the hike

Group at the Swanson Creek Bridge, where the creek goes under the main park road

Start of the Waterfall Loop Trail off the main park road leading to the campround (left)

Climbing up the stairs below Granuja Falls

Granuja Falls

Crossing the bridge below Granuja Falls

Looking at ladybugs on the trail marker

On the bridge below the small dam

Small dam on Swanson Creek

Looking at the trees above the trail. The trail on the north side of the creek is a wide service road.

Hiking by the fern-covered hill

Looking at seeds and a leaf covered with ladybugs

Ladybugs on a bridge rail

On the bridge below Lower Black Rock Falls

Lower Black Rock Falls

Upper Black Rock Falls

On the trail above the bridge to the south side of the Waterfall Loop Trail

At the bottom of Upper Falls

Taking pictures of Upper Falls

View of Upper Falls from the creek below it

Heading up the start of the Countour Trail to the top of Upper Falls. The signs warns that the trail crossing of the creek may be impassable in wet weather, as there is no bridge over the creek, and the creek has to be forded.

View of Upper Falls from the top

On the trail at the top of Upper Falls. The Countour Trail continues along Swanson Creek. It crosses Swanson Creek and follows along the countours of the hillside until it hits the Alec Canyon Trail. Part of the group continued on the Countour Trail, while others went back down the Waterfall Loop Trail. Near Upper Falls is a short trail to Basin Falls.

Creek below Basin Falls

Heading up to Basin Falls. The best view is on the other side of the creek.

Basin Falls

Near the Basin Falls Trail is the Knobcone Point Trail. This is a very steep 1/2-mile trail that climbs out of the canyon to the top of a ridge. As the trail climbs higher, it affords views of the surrounding hills and mountains.  The next few pictures were taken from that trail.

View east towards the hills and mountains east of San Martin

View south towards the steep hillsides above Swanson Creek

View east looking down the steep, rocky trail

Madrone tree along the trail

View north along the ridgetop of the Santa Cruz Mountains, showing fire damage

View of the Knibbs Knob Trail on the ridge to the northwest. The Knibbs Knob Trail is another steep trail that starts at the campground and ends at the summit of the Santa Cruz Mountains on Summit Road.

Back to the Waterfall Loop Trail:

Trail leading down to the trail bridge

Bridge leading to the south side of the Waterfall Loop Trail

Small falls on Swanson Creek

The trail on the south side is a narrow dirt footpath that runs just above the creek.

Small falls and cascade on Swanson Creek

The trail crosses over Swanson Creek twice on 2 successive bridges.

One more bridge over the creek at the end of the south side trail

Bridge and stairs leading back to the north side of the Waterfall Loop Trail

Small creek cascading down the hill south of Swanson Creek

View of Granuja Falls and the bridge below it

The trail head just past the end of the parking lot by the Black Oak Group Picnic Area

The pictures below are of the Lower Swanson Creek Trail. This trail begins where Swanson Creek goes under the main park road (see above). It ends at Uvas Creek. There is a short connector trail leading down to it from the picnic area north of the main parking lot and restroom.

Swanson Creek

The trail leaves Swanson Creek just before the creek tumbles over a cliff.

The trail leads through a field of moss-covered rocks.

The trail leads along a steep hillside, then down a flight of stairs.

The trail leads to the confluence of Swanson Creek (left) and Uvas Creek (center).

This is Uvas Creek. The Uvas Creek Trail leads along the creek to the campground.

Looking up Swanson Creek towards a waterfall, which is not shown on the park map.

Closeup of the unnamed waterfall on Swanson Creek.

Page created by Ron Horii, volunteer County Parks photographer, 2/21/09