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Did You Know… ? Wildwood Park

The Rifleman barn and house TV set in Wildwood Park, circa 1960
Photo courtesy of Steve Dibblee of Ventura Views

Did you know… that many Hollywood movies were filmed at Wildwood Park in Thousand Oaks from the 1930s through the 1960s?

For over 40 years, Hollywood used the beauty of Wildwood Park as a backdrop for several movies including Spartacus, The Grapes of Wrath and Wuthering Heights and television series including Wagon Train, Bonanza, The Rifleman, and Gunsmoke.

Wildwood Park is rich in historic and archaeological resources, unusual geologic formations, and is home to a wide range of plant and animal life. Over 250 plant species, more than 60 species of birds, 37 species of mammals, and 22 species of reptiles can be found in the park. There are also 14 trails covering 17 miles and two year-round waterfalls called Paradise Falls.

The original Spartacus movie poster

The original Spartacus movie poster

Wildwood Park history

One the two waterfalls at Paradise Falls

Prior to the 19th Century, The Chumash Tribe lived in this area for nearly 8,000 years! With the Spanish colonization of California, the land around the area became part of Rancho El Conejo. Most of the 20th century, cattle and sheep grazed on the rich grasslands prior to it becoming an open space.

Today, people of all ages frequent Wildwood Park for a variety of outdoor activities such as nature hikes, biking, horseback riding and summer day camps.

 Be sure to check out this beautiful Ventura County park soon!

Hiking path in Wildwood Park

Cowboy at the movie ranch

More information on Wildwood Park

Location:  928 W. Avenida de los Arboles, Thousand Oaks, CA 91360
Hours:  Daily, 7:00 am until dusk
Phone:  (805) 495-2163

Image credits: Steve Dibblee of Ventura Views and Conejo Recreation and Park District

3 Comments

  1. Just curious, is the Rifleman set is still standing? I still stop and watch the show when I run across it.

    Thank you.

  2. Paradise Falls closed due to vandalism but was able to do a great circle by going up on the lizard rock and going down the other side there’s a trail cutting over to the ridge you see not far away. From the ridge you can cut down on steep but clear trail to box Canyon and then come back up the road from box Canyon to the main path.

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