Pilot Creek Falls (University Falls)
Description of Falls
**ATTENTION** The falls are currently closed to the public 4/5/14 until 4/25/14. Heavy equipment is operating near the falls. This fire hazard reduction operation causes woody debris to fly at 200 mph in all directions. Attempting to access the falls is unsafe and may result in serious injury. Obey all signs and people. You will be turned around at the falls.
Pilot Creek Falls (a.k.a University Falls) are undeveloped wildlands overseen by UC Center for Forestry. As with all Center for Forestry lands, VISITORS ENTER AT THEIR OWN RISK, and access may be restricted at any time. Motorized use and camping are strictly prohibited.
Several issues and hazards exist:
- The route leading to the falls passes through public and private lands. Land surrounding the falls is PRIVATE. Currently, there is no way to access the falls without trespassing. The private landowners have not given permission for the public to pass.
- Getting to the falls involves a 5.4 mile round trip along dirt roads and an unimproved trail. The elevation change is 1200 feet and involves a steep ascent.
- Several injuries and fatalities have occurred. Many of these injuries have occurred on the fourth falls, although every fall can cause injury. Slippery rocks and the slippery trail have also caused injuries.
- Emergency response may take 2 or more hours. There is no cellular reception at or en route to the falls.
- You may be responsible for financially reimbursing emergency response services.
- All open flames and camping are strictly prohibited.
- Street side parking is limited. Illegal parking (in Quintette or across white lines) can lead to your vehicle being cited and likely towed at your expense.
- There are no restrooms or garbage service at or along the route to the falls.
Several local and legal alternatives exist:
Stumpy Meadows Reservoir (swimming, boating)- 5 miles east on Wentworth Springs Road
Rubicon River at Elicott's crossing (swimming, rocks, hiking)- 12 miles East on Wentworth Springs Road, 4.5 miles north on 11 Pines Road.
Bassi Falls (water falls)- 20 miles East on Wentworth Springs Road, 9 miles South on Ice House Road