Above is a video I shot Tuesday afternoon of a mystery set of waterfalls.
Where is this? How difficult are they to reach? Can anybody get there?
Yes, about anybody can get there. I’ll answer 10 questions below my family has asked me about them. By the end, you’ll know the spot; that is, if you don’t figure it out first.
From now through mid-June is the best time of the year to see waterfalls. Most are at peak flows in mid-May.
Waterfalls are best captured in video where you can hear the rush of water, and with it, feel the force of nature.
Now for the quiz:
1. Do the waterfalls in the video have separate names, or are they connected and have one name?
2. Are they located in Northern California?
3. Is it a difficult hike to see them?
It is an easy 1.6-mile hike into a ravine to a viewing deck. On the return, you climb 400 feet, but it is shaded and the trail is well-graded with switchbacks. On my trip, I saw seniors who made the trip.
4. Is it near a major highway?
Yes. Interstate 80 is 11 miles from the trailhead.
5. What is the elevation of the parking area and trailhead, and waterfall.
The parking area is at an elevation of 1,000 feet and the primary set of waterfalls is at an elevation of 600 feet. From the parking lot and trailhead, take the dirt trail on the right. It leads down one mile into a ravine and crosses a bridge (where you are on a gravel road for a short distance). Then turn left on the trail along the stream and walk a half mile to the cut-off on the left to the viewing deck.
6. Is it in the Sierra foothills or at a Bay Area park?
In the Sierra foothills.
7. Is it the hidden waterfall you once wrote about on the Stevens Trail out of Colfax?
No, this is far prettier, runs year-round, and it is well hidden just the same.
8. What is the nearest town of note?
Auburn in Placer County.
9. Is it in a relatively new park?
Yes, the waterfalls are in a Placer County Park that was opened in fall of 2006.
10. It must be Hidden Falls Regional Park?
Yep: For GPS navigation, use 7587 Mears Place, Auburn, CA 95603.
The hike can be extended to a 5.5-mile loop that features another stream and two gentle climbs in hardwood forests. The terrain and landscape is similar to the parks on the South Peninsula and in Santa Clara County, like Uvas Canyon County Park. Leashed dogs, horses, mountain bikes permitted.
Feel great in the next 24 hours: Hike. Bike. Camp. Fish. Boat. Wildlife watch. Explore.
Great e-book just out:
Sierra Crossing, The epic trek you can do in a week