How many natural lakes do you think Orange County, CA has? True, there are a few lakes in OC, but as with alot of things in Orange County, most of them are not natural. The answer is ONE. Just one. One small, unassuming lake tucked away in the James Dilley Preserve off Laguna Canyon Road. At 12 acres, Barbara’ Lake may not be Lake Superior, but she certainly is pretty.
Mari and I met some friends and introduced them to the Laguna Coast Wilderness Park. We have hiked quite a few trails in this park but we still hadn’t seen the lake! Since the trail from the Nix Nature Center to Barbara’s Lake is flat, we decided it was a great hike for our toddler foursome to take on. We began with a quick loop around the 1/2 mile nature trail (named Mary’s Trail) and admired all the sights and scents of the coastal sage scrub habitat.
Then we headed out south on the Little Sycamore Canyon Trail which lead us under the road past more great scenery and over towards a little pond. Now this may or may not be Bubble’s Pond. I seem to have found conflicting reports on the internet as to its exact location. What is the significance of Bubble’s Pond? Well back in the early eighties a hippo escaped from the (now closed) Lion Country Safari and took up residence for 19 days in the area!
We took a right on the Stagecoach Trail and then a quick left onto the Lake Trail. The vegetation grew more lush and we could tell that we were close! Suddenly we found what we were looking for- Orange County’s lake!!! The shore was lined with cattails and wildflowers instead of million dollar homes. I think I like lakes alot better that way…