Paradise Falls – The easy way

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Paradise Falls – The easy way

3.5 miles, 650′ gain, Fit Beginner

A hike to Paradise Falls is one of the most popular things to do for those visiting Simi Valley, yet a lot of people that live nearby rarely make this fun hike or perhaps have never done it.

There are several paths one can take to the falls. This route is the easy way to Paradise Falls and suitable for fit beginners. See link: How hard is this hike (

There are a couple inclines of several hundred steps, but nothing a fit beginner cannot handle. There is one stair case of several stories that takes us down to the falls.

There is nothing wrong with taking it slow because this is a social hike, not a conditioning hike. We’ll be waiting for folks to catch up at the major junctions.

The waterfall is flowing fully even during our drought conditions. It is fed by urban run-off (surface water waste created by urbanization). It feeds into a small pond, where I see people swimming and diving all the time, even though this water is not safe or legal for either due to health risks and debris hidden below the surface.

The Route.

To the Main Parking Lot
We’ll be starting from the tennis court parking lot 4 blocks east of the trail head parking lot and across the road. We’ll take a tunnel that goes under the road and make our way to the park side of the road. We’ll turn right (west) for 1 block, where we’ll see an entrance to the Moonridge trail that runs parallel to the road.

We’ll enter and make a right, following it around past the first set of junctions, continuing for about 1/4 mile, and then follow it around to the left instead of taking the stem to the right.

This will take us to the steps to the main trail head parking lot on the right side. We’ll turn right, going up the stairs, and head across the lot to the entrance of the Mesa trail.

To the Tepee
We’ll take that trail, past the gate, and after 2000′, turn left on the North Tepee Trail. We’ll follow this down for 2000′ more to a large Tepee structure. We’ll regroup, we can take a few pictures, there’s a drinking fountain, and we can rest a moment.

To the Waterfall
We’ll then continue down to the Paradise Falls waterfall by following the zig-zag trail and taking a stair case down.

The Snack Share
After a short visit, we’ll return a different way, heading partly back up and across the back side of the waterfall along Wildwood Canyon trail. After about another 100 yards, we’ll come to a couple picnic tables on the right where we’ll share snacks and beverages (

Returning Early
For those that wish to head back instead of hanging around for the snack share, you are responsible for finding your own way back, although there is almost always someone leaving early that knows the route, or you can study the map in this description.

Continuing with the group
For this hike, we’ll take the easiest way back. We continue on this trail and it comes to a dead end, we make a right and then immediate left onto the Indian Creek trail. We’ll follow this all the way back to our cars, making a right towards the end when it dead ends again.

Interesting Notes:

You will see several entities of note:

Prickly Pear Cactus

Inside and fruit are edible. Remove needles and scrape to remove hairs, cut top off, hollow out to make water container. Burn or scrape off needles – even stones can be used if you don’t have a knife. Fruit peels easily. Eat seeds and all. Use duct tape to remove thorns from hands.

Lemonade Berry

Some saps can produce skin allergic reactions. Good kindling. Usually, the berries are toxic. They are covered with a gooey sour (like lemon) coating. Hikers sometimes drop a seed or two into their water bottles to give the water a tang. Wide leaves, rounded tips, edges are smooth, dull on back. Can only be found in the California hills.


Wildwood Park
635 W Avenida De Los Arboles
Thousand Oaks, CA 91360

From the 118:

CA-118 west to CA-23.
Continue south on CA-23 to exit 15 for 4.8 miles, Avenida de los Arboles
Turn right (east) on Avenida de los Arboles for 3.3 miles until 4 blocks before it ends. There will be tennis courts on the right with a parking lot.

From CA-23:

CA-23 to exit 15, Avenida de los Arboles
East on Avenida de los Arboles for 3.3 miles until it ends.
Trail head on the left.
Turn right (east) on Avenida de los Arboles for 3.3 miles until 4 blocks before it ends. There will be tennis courts on the right with a parking lot.

The Hike:
Distance: 3.5miles, 3 1/2 hrs
Elevation Gain: 650′
Pace: 2.0 mph
Difficulty ( Fit Beginner
Dogs: Yes.
Restrooms: Yes – at the start.
Drinking Fountains: Yes.
Parking: Free.
Trail: Double and single track, fire road.

What to Bring:
1-2 liters of water.
Snacks and/or beverages ( share.
Hiking shoes preferred, but athletic shoes will be OK.
Flashlight or headlamp for evening hikes.
Insect Repellent

Release of Liability:

December 11 2019


Date: December 11, 2019
Time: 6:30 pm - 10:00 pm
Hike Categories:
Website: Visit Event Website


Tennis Court parking lot

635 W Avenida de Los Arboles
Thousand Oaks, CA US

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