Quail Loop Trail

EASY 24 reviews

Quail Loop Trail is a 1.8 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Irvine, CA that features beautiful wild flowers and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

1.8 miles 158 feet Loop

dogs on leash

kid friendly

birding

hiking

mountain biking

nature trips

trail running

walking

views

wild flowers

wildlife

quail hill is a 1.80 mile trail located near Irvine, California. The trail is rated as moderate and primarily used for trail running.

walking
23 days ago

An easy, mostly level loop trail through a meadow. One large hill. Stroller-friendly, albeit a bit bumpy.

24 days ago

2 months ago

hiking
2 months ago

walking
2 months ago

The trail is great for a quick walk which will increase your heart rate with the incline (well at least my heart rate increased). The Vista point is a nice quiet spot (unfortunately for the 405). It doesn't appear too busy either.

3 months ago

4 months ago

This was a great little trail to hit early morning with my 2 year old son. He had a great time and finished it by himself. The only real thing I would warn you about is parking. If the tiny lot is full you'll have to park at the shopping center but it's only another quarter mile.

5 months ago

7 months ago

hiking
7 months ago

7 months ago

kid friendly hike....super easy, mostly flat with slight hill. Look where your walking as I saw two small rattle snakes. also saw the molting skin of a rattle snake which was cool for the kids to see and touch. All in all a nice little hike when you are limited on time. also nice that it is near the Irvine spectrum.

walking
7 months ago

Easy and beautiful loop. Convenient parking. Dog friendly.

Spotted a coyote and stumbled across some snake skin :)

But it's true. The nats come out at 7:00!

7 months ago

Easy yet beautiful hike

walking
9 months ago

First hike in about 12 years and had my baby on my back and was stopped dead in our tracks with snake in middle of path. Biggest fear for me is snakes and I lost it so won't be going alone again anytime soon. However it is a easy hike but there is a uphill climb that beginners can do but might be difficult for someone that is just starting out. Go slow and know you can do it and there is always a down side :)

hiking
9 months ago

9 months ago

Easy 40 min hike. Good view of Irvine. Really accessible.

9 months ago

Simple hike you can do on a lunch break. Took me 30 min. Great views of Irvine.

hiking
10 months ago

Nice place for a quick run..... Love this place i come here at least once a week....

birding
1 year ago

I love it here... Very pretty. Easy, mellow workout.

hiking
1 year ago

Quail Hill offers a few hiking, biking, and horse riding options from the Quail Hill Trailhead and Staging Area.

The Trailhead is located on Shady Canyon Drive, just past Fossil Road on the right. To get there from the 405, take the Sand Canyon / Shady Canyon exit towards Shady Canyon Drive. Enter the traffic circle and take the first exit to the right onto Shady Canyon Drive. Turn into the first driveway on your right past Fossil.
I like the Quail Hill Loop for a few reasons, not the least of which is that it offers better views than you’ll find walking, jogging, or running around a high school athletic field.

The amenities have been clean every time I’ve been here, and parking is available most weekdays (on weekends, it’s hit or miss depending on the time of day you get there (there are 42 parking spaces and two handicapped parking spaces), but there is ample parking across Shady Canyon Drive at the athletic field). There’s plenty of bike parking, a couple of (clean!) picnic areas, and a lookout. From the trail head parking lot you can access the Shady Canyon Hiking and Biking Trail, the Shady Canyon Trail Bikeway, and Quail Hill Loop.

The loop itself is in very good repair, varying from about 5’ wide to 7’ wide. It’s dirt, so you might want to think twice about going out there too soon after it rains. It is 1.7 miles long with an elevation gain of about 200 feet from the highest point to the lowest point, with the majority of the loop (about a mile) being reasonably flat. There are no benches or rest areas on the loop itself, although there is a ‘cell phone audio tour’ available with five stops along the trail (labeled “Trailhead,” “Seasonal Pond,” “Biodiversity,” “Wildlife,” and “Vista Point” if you follow the loop counter-clockwise).

The majority of people follow a clockwise pattern around the loop, which starts you off from the trailhead going uphill to the highest point of the loop. It’s a gentle ascent followed by a longer descent to the lowest point. At the lowest point you’ll be close to the freeway (the sound doesn’t carry and the noise pollution is at a minimum). There are views of the surrounding hills, wildflowers, a tiny little patch of cactus (with a “not a trail” marker right in the middle of it), and some wildlife. I’ve seen a lone coyote and one rattlesnake. During February into March there are tons of caterpillars. They seem remarkably uninterested in hikers, and move across the trail very quickly in small groups.

During the summer months it can be a dry and hot hike in the middle of the day, and there is no shade. I’d recommend a hat and sunscreen if you’re going to be out there doing more than one loop.

The pictures from my last trip on February 22, 2015 were just a day before it rained, at around 8:00am. There wasn’t much in the way of available parking, with a few people hovering like vultures waiting for others to pull out of their parking spaces.

Not a difficult path, not particularly crowded, and you can take your dog with you on a leash. A great place to visit!