Nojoqui Falls Then and Now

In August of 2016 I headed to Lompoc for Wine & Fire, a celebration of the wines of the Santa Rita Hills. I spent my downtime exploring and decided to check out Nojoqui Falls in nearby Goleta.

Located off a quaint country road the trail is entered from Nojoqui Falls Park. On my way I stopped at a local farm stand and mentioned where I was headed. It was then I was informed the falls were dry. That’s right! In 2016 California was in the height of the drought and water levels all over the state were quickly diminishing. Of course the falls were dry! Nevertheless, I decided to check them out.

It was a very hot day and it’s an uphill path to the falls so it wasn’t the most pleasant trip. But the path is relatively short and the landscape is quite nice so I enjoyed myself nonetheless. And the falls?

Bone dry. I know that’s not the best picture but, don’t worry, there wasn’t much to see. I figured at least I got some exercise and decided I’d try to return again when the water was flowing.

2017 proved to be a wet year in California and I’m sure the falls were flowing beautifully but, I didn’t make it back to the area to see them. Last month I finally returned on a chilly winter day and wondered what I would find. A creek follows the path and for much of the way it was dry – uh oh. But then I saw a glimpse of water in the creek bed.

I made it to the falls and…

Water! Ok, it’s not rushing, heck, it’s not even flowing buuuut there is a trickle! I’ll take it!

I headed back to my car happy to see an improvement. And when I got home to compare photos…

I realized that, totally unplanned,  I had taken nearly the same shot as almost two years earlier. Apparently I find bridges photogenic.



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