Sunday, March 30, 2014

• Best 43 Bucks Ever Spent or Gee Honey, You Were Right.

Have you ever been to Lake Elsinore's River Walk?

Well, it's only going to cost you $43... if you choose the preferred parking like I did.

Trophy Row Parking!!
Here's the lowdown. A group of locals puts in a three mile walk each weekend. We have several different loops we use. The Santa Rosa Plateau, the Wildomar channel (AKA Murrieta Creek), and the levy behind The Diamond in Lake Elsinore.

Always looking for new local trails/paths/loops to walk on, the River Walk in Lake Elsinore was mentioned.

Our advance scout went there the day before to locate the best place to park. It seemed that near the little league field would be best. She even got the seal of approval from a local baseball mom that she "parks there all the time and never gets ticketed." What could be more of a sure thing than that?

Here's where the "I told you so" comes in.

My lovely wife said, "How about I drop you off so you don't get a ticket, and then I'll pick you up when you're done."

I was about 98% certain that there was no way I'd get a ticket so I declined the offer.


The worst part is that I was running late (I had no idea where this was. I had initially gone to the wrong ball fields, the ones that can be seen from the levy). I get to where the group is meeting up, and park next to a friend's car. I get out of the car, lock the car, take about five steps and then realize that the group is about 200 yards further south. So I get back into the car and drive past a NO PARKING sign (that should have been my first clue that I was in for it.)

Then we went on the walk and enjoyed the morning.

Great weather, good conversation and hey, it was even great walking past homeless guys doing their laundry and sleeping on the benches. They didn't even hit us up for loose change, though one did have his belongings all over the path. Kind of a fun obstacle course for the young at heart.

At the conclusion of the walk we were greeted by white envelopes on our car windshields.

I was hoping it was for 50% off my third pizza or maybe inviting me to try out some new fitness place.
 No such luck. 
My favorite part here is that Lake Elsinore sends out their tickets to NEWPORT BEACH for processing. Like the OC needs more jobs that could easily been done locally, and probably is being done by locals that drive there in the first place. 

We went over to the little league field to commiserate with people parked there, also marked Boat Trailer Parking Only. Lo and behold, they didn't get tickets. They'd never heard of people getting tickets for parking there this time of year. We all agreed that it would be a different situation had there actually been boat trailers there. Or if we'd tried to get out of paying.

A view of the Boat Trailer parking adjacent to the little league fields.
Ready for a bunch of excuses? Well I am...

  • There was no one manning the launch area (where they take the money to park).
  • The gate was locked in the opened position.
  • Other people were parking there.
  • I didn't think the sign applied to me.
  • The dog ate my homework!

But seriously, it's pretty jacked up when a city wants you to visit it, and then goes ticky-tack with ticket writing. Either close the gate or allow for off season parking near the mouth of one of your city's attractions.

Still, in the end I'm glad I strolled on LE's world famous River Walk (though I think it would be better named, Drainage Ditch Walk —but I'm thinking they wouldn't be able to hoodwink as many into coming with the more truthful name). One and done for me. I can't afford it a second round.


  1. I should have told you just to park next to our SUV. Oh wait, I did. Well, I can see how you wouldn't want to WALK 200 yards so you could go WALK. LOL.

    1. Yeah, yeah, yeah... I just wanted to park where all the cool kids were parking.

  2. I have to laugh my rear-end off. You were just wondering in the previous article how to make money for the city while enforcing the law. This is how Lake Elsinore does it. Don't get caught in a park over there after ten o'clock PM, I understand the fine is close to $500. As for walking, what's wrong with Wildomar's current 23 miles of roadside trails, not good enough?
    Kenny Mayes

    1. Kenny, I have to agree with everything you wrote. Though most of us are good with giving flagrant traffic violators the once over, where would it stop? It wouldn't stop until everyone got caught up in it on some level or another.

      When it comes to the fines for being in parks late, I've only recent heard about that. I can't imagine why Wildomar doesn't have such a thing, or if we do, why that wasn't mentioned in all the talk about the parks and the fence when it was going on.

  3. I know for a fact that the rules of parking tickets in launch area and the being in the park after 10pm fines are not enforced or applied 100% to every "violator". Joseph makes good points.

  4. But just remember that you still broke the law and got fined accordingly. Thats just a bummer though. No one should be above following the rules. For example, if you aren't supposed to park in the other lot unless you are launching a boat--they should be fined too. Consider themselves lucky they didn't get caught. This is part of the problem since everyone thinks that they are above the law concerning something. If you don't like the laws than work to change them. Otherwise as much as it sucks--boo. The ticket was deserved.

    1. I love responses from practically perfect people! Except usually when you dig a little deeper you find that somewhere somehow they don't follow ALL the codes or regulations themselves 100% of the time....the most sanctimonious are usually the worst!

  5. I guess I was too subtle when I said, "the dog ate my homework."

  6. Oh jeeez, that sucks. That's why i like Wildomar. Sure we're short on police, but with that comes less citations and enforcement of mild infractions. How many citations were issued?

    - Kevin Sax


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