previous next 31 images

Santa Margarita Ecological Reserve

The Santa Margarita Ecological Reserve opens up to visitors several times a year. Visitors are invited to hike down to the river and meet some of the personnel. See

It's an 800 foot drop from the HQ to the river on a steep dirt road.

Witch's hair, a parasite.

Flowers grow in cracks in the decomposed granite rocks.

View down the hill of the river and gorge. We live just over the hills you see.

The Santa Margarita river runs 5.1 miles thorugh the 4500 acre research center property.

The surrounding hills are steep and mostly untouched.

The engineer from Fallbrook Public Utility District joined us and taked about the water aspects of the property.

Without his comments, we would never have known that a 84 inch water pipe carrying water from the Sierras ran right under here. See the data sensors up the hill?

The river is pristine.

A train ran through here once - you can see the railbed on the far bank.

Two creeks in Temecula join to create the Santa Margarita river.

Lots of sand washes in from the desert.

Beautiful river water.

Plenty of visitors showed up.

The straight line along the far river bank is the old roadbed for a railroad that ran through here in the late 1800s. It was flooded out many times before it was rerouted.

More weather instruments on the ridge with webcams. During the October 2007 wildfires, we used their cameras to see where the fire was.

Here you can see the station for the water pipeline that crosses the river and the abandoned railroad bed.

View down to the river. During the rainy season it can be more than 7 feet higher.

Views of mountains around the river.

Core samples from a research project.

Looking down to the river.

Here are more of the weather instruments. I believe they said there were more than a dozen stations.

The entire 4500 acre, 5 mile long property has wireless internet , WiFi at 50 Mb/s connected to the HQ building here.

More antennas for the WiFi.

The weather station just outside the HQ.

Cameras and line-of-sight wireless antennas.

Another camera and weather station. They are actively monitoring for fires.

The trail over the hill is just left of Red Mt. which is next to our place. You might be able to see the antennas on Red Mt.

Dr. Matt Rahm, Director (in white shirt) talks to visitors about the work being done here.

A photographer from the Fallbrook Paper took photos.