The Yucca Trail located at 2002 Stunt Road in Calabasas leads into the land that was up for sale by the Grainger Family and purchased by Mountains Restoration Trust, with the help of San Fernando Valley Audubon Society, in 2019. This purchase was important to bird species as the land will not be used for private development. The MRT owns other properties nearby, and contiguous, forming a larger wild, native mountain area set aside in perpetuity for recreation.
The trail that is part of the Cold Creek Valley Preserve is a lovely walk through forested areas and meadows. The signage along the trail includes photographs of birds one is likely to see, as well as photos of native plants. Dave Barton, a member of the chapter and experienced walk leader, provided the photos for the signage. There are unexpected surprises on the walk as California Quail can be heard calling and parrots, woodpeckers and Scrubjay make their presence known. On our last walk on the property, on January 25, the Phainopepla, our chapter’s signature bird, softly called from its perch overlooking an area where many species gathered, including the Northern Flicker and a flock of Cedar Waxwings.
The trail ends in a magical canopy of oaks, next to the creek as it slides over the rocks in the shadow of the trees.
Plans are in place to install benches in areas that provide scenic views, as well as picnic tables. Although the walk is short be prepared to spend at least 2 hours to enjoy the true beauty of the trail and its wildlife.
San Fernando Valley Audubon Society is pleased to have aided MRT’s acquisition of this natural beauty, and hopes that SoCal birders will make it one of their destinations.