To Our Ojai Community:

Thank you for your patience and understanding as we recover from the damage from the Thomas Fire on our trails. In the coming months trails will likely open and close depending on rain and changing trail conditions. Click here for current information and trail notifications »

Ojai Meadows Preserve Loop Trail


Come Visit the Meadows

(1) The trail starts at the parking turnout on Highway 33, east of Nordhoff High School.  Did you know the preserve’s 57 acres is part of the Maricopa Drain? Before OVLC acquired the property, Highway 33 would flood during a rainstorm. Now water runoff from the highway and Cuyama Meadows (across the street) drains into the preserve. There are other water sources too: Taormina Creek and Happy Valley Drain. 

OMP-Spring001-2014(2) Follow the trail toward a stand of willows and you’ll see it head in two different directions. Turn right and follow the habitat fence or go straight to the 0.78 mile loop, taking you to Taormina Meadows. Along this east-west span of trail you’ll see Valley Oak Savanna, Coastal Sage Scrub, coyote brush, California buckwheat, mugwort and black sage. Poles were added in the meadow so birds could perch and hunt.

OMP-Spring009-2014(3) Keep walking and you’ll see Taormina Creek, which receives runoff from the neighborhood and Krotona Hill. The loop takes you through a Eucalyptus grove back to the main trail. Click Eucalyptus grove history.

A Footbridge Built by Donors


(4) You’ll walk across the Maricopa Drain, which channels water from the pond over to Happy Valley Drain. Plants that live in the pond absorb pollutants from urban runoff keeping the groundwater clean.

Seasonal Splendor

OMP-Spring043-2014(5) The last leg of the trail passes two ponds called vernal pools. They are seasonal wetlands that thrive in a Mediterranean climate. The shallow ponds have depressions in the soil, providing shelter for rare plants and animals during summer and fall. Many of them spend the dry season as seeds, eggs or cysts and reproduce in the spring. You’ll spot egrets, ducks and hawks as you head back to the highway.