Explore Under 5 Miles - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Under 5 Miles Map
6 days ago

Short but sweet. Would be a fun hike to take visitors.

Got their early and was drizzling rain. Gorgeous hike. I really enjoyed it! You will cross a small stream several times but you wont get your feet wet. They say this is a popular trail and I can see why. I recommend hitting it early to beat the crowd.

It was fun but to get to the start of the trail it takes four miles of off road driving and an extra quarter mile walk. While on the trail, there is a stream and there are areas where you have to cross the stream while walking on rocks. Since the trail is out and back, there are lots of people walking back and forth so if you are walking through a small, narrow area, you have to watch out.
At the end of the trail, there is a waterfall but it’s probably not as big as you’re expecting. I feel like in order to get to said waterfall, you have to be careful, and really climb on rocks and over the stream. You can have children and dogs on this trail.
At the beginning of the trail, after the extra walking, they have a wagon of water bottles you can have only asking for a small donation.

easy trail and great for family.

Loved this trail. All trail mapping is fantastic. So many times I could got lost.

1 month ago

Nice nature hike. Diverse plant life, particularly enjoyed the scent from fig trees and sound of croaking frogs in the late evening.

Pretty busy. If you start on the north side the incline is very intense and long: my kids were not pleased (4/6) and had to be carried. Trail shoots up then drops down to a flat valley with lots of blooming poison oak right along the trail. State park should remove or control it (it’s everywhere).

Nice family hike.

The most difficult part is crossing through Poles trail, which is a steep incline of just under half a mile. I would definitely recommend doing the trail counterclockwise, which would mean taking the incline uphill, but will give you a beautiful ocean view the rest of the way. Well worth the climb.

1 month ago

Drive in is funner than the hike.

Took the shadier way up with the narrower roads which ended up being a great HIIT workout because of the steep inclines followed by flat roads. It was tough but it’s fine if you take breaks. No water through the streams though, but saw the Pacific Ocean. Came down on the windier steeper trail which ended up being an easy decline. Would definitely do again!

1 month ago

The dirt road driving into the trailhead is not paved, it's rocky & bumpy. We saw small cars from a Honda Civic to big SUVs driving through. Just drive slow. You can also buy a Adventure pass at the General store, if you don't have one already.
The hike was scenic & kid friendly. Ours were between the age of 5-10yrs & they loved this hike! Enough to come back again. Its also dog friendly. Watch out & step aside for The Off Road Cyclers, they look like they were having fun riding down the bumpy trail.
Along the trails you'll find small cabin houses, native plants, birds, streams, fallen branches & big rocks to climb on. At the end of the trail you'll discover a small waterfall about 15 ft high.

4 mile dirt road to the trail head, it’s not too bad just go slow. I drive a Honda Accord and I did it fine just watch for the potholes. This trail was amazing. The views of the mountains peeking over the trees were great. The water fall was flowing so it was a great turnout at the end. Plenty of little streams to cross; I ended up just walking through them so if you’re like me and don’t mind getting your feet wet consider bringing a fresh pair of socks. I brought my dog and she had no problem with the trail she loved playing in the water at the end. I did not have the parking pass I took a risk and just went for it anyways. It went well for me, but just in case maybe look ahead and get one.

it was chilly today, so bring a light sweater if you go before 9am. it was about 40-45 degrees when i went. beautiful hike and the waterfall had a nice flow.

We were visiting the area and had a couple of hours to do this hike. There are some steep rocky inclines but the views along the way and especially along the top were worth it! Wear good shoes and bring water.

I love it !!!!!

on Trabuco Trail

2 months ago

The drive to the trailhead involves 5.3 miles of dirt road. As of today, if you take it slow, it’s totally doable in a standard sedan type car. But in the past, the road has had some pretty significant ruts after heavy rains, and was even closed last year for quite awhile due to mudslides and washouts, so be sure to check road conditions before heading this way.

I started the hike on a Sunday at about 11:30 a.m. the trailhead only parks about 6 cars (especially when people aren’t considerate in how they angle their vehicles to fit), so I parked a short walk back to where a few cabins are just before the trailhead. The trailhead is where the road ends, so you can’t miss it. Oh, and don’t forget your adventure pass.

Despite a packed parking situation, the trail itself was only lightly trafficked. I saw two other hiking groups briefly, and 4 mountain bikers passed me. Pretty light for a weekend. Otherwise, I was blissfully alone for 95% off my hike.

The lower creek was still dry despite the rainfall a week ago, but the upper part of the creek was flowing. Unfortunately, the trail doesn’t cross that part of the creek, so no extra water for the pup. But you can still hear it and see it from the trail.

The trail is pretty even with both shade and sun, so the temperature was pleasant throughout the entire hike. And there are some fantastic views and scenery in general. As far as incline, there’s barely any at all. I’d say this trail definitely is an easy one.

The trail “ends” at a fork with a clearly marked sign where West Horseshoe Thief splits to the left and the rest of Trabuco Trail continues on. I understand both of the continuing trails are rated as difficult due to a combination of incline and length. Have at it though if you want to lengthen the hike.

I really enjoyed this hike. The only reason I didn’t give it the fifth star is because of the dry creek and generally dry shrubbery (which is mostly due to time of year and not enough rainfall yet this season). I bet after a good rain season I’d love it completely.

I'm not sure who decides the difficulty level for these trails, but I felt like this was on the higher side of "moderate".

We parked in at Visitor's Center. You have to pay for parking - $5/hour or $15/day, but they don't let you pay hourly on the weekends.

Since it's a loop, you can do this trail two ways. We headed South from the Visitor Center to the El Moro Canyon Trail, followed that up the canyon to where it meets Poles and Jeep Trails. This part of the hike was relatively easy, with a slight incline.

The Poles Trail is short but STEEP... most people were coming down. Be sure to have a good tread on your footwear if you decided to hike down. At the top of Poles you make a left and head back down to the Visitor Center parking. The view of the ocean is really nice on the way down, which makes the trek up Poles worth it.

make sure your car can handle a small dirt road leading to the trail. the lower trail is fairly quick and easy. but if you head to the upper trail it will take you about 2 hrs to reach the top. beautiful scenery. be wary of a pass that may be needed for the park. I did not purchase one and took the risk. I spent about 4 hrs in total on the trail with a friend and did not receive a ticket. it's is beautiful. wear a hat and sunblock if you plan to do the upper trail. Definitely will be back!

I was a bit nervous to go on this “off-road” excursions, as my truck is not a 4WD. I took my chances and went for it. It was no big deal! As long as you keep momentum going, you’ll be fine. There are a few spots along the road I drove to get to the trailhead that seemed a bit hairy, but we did fine! Great 3 mile trail, out and back. Recommend good footwear, like hiking boots for the little streams you have to cross, unless you want to try you luck at balancing across a few rocks in the stream. The trail gets a little tight towards the end, but once you get there, it’s pretty awesome. Perfect to take your wife or kids on for a day-date, pack a lunch and eat on the trail about half way through. There is a decent size shaded section with big rocks where you can sit along the creek and enjoy a sandwich or a snack and a drink. Enjoy!

Lots of cool birds for my friend. Not very much shade for me.

off road driving
2 months ago

Absolutely love Holy Jim! Would even consider it as "Mothers Nature Playground"! I've only gone off-roading at Holy Jim and haven't done the hiking trails that goes further into the mountain.

Loved this trail! Beautiful. Worth the drive!

2 months ago

It’s a long drive down a dirt road to get to the trail head. The hike to the falls is pretty short and fairly easy. Dogs and kids everywhere, if you’re into that sort of thing.

Nice hike on a well maintained trail. As expected, no shade on the hike so bring plenty of water. If you go to the right on the trail you stay almost flat for about 1.5 miles til you reach the very steep incline to get to the ridge. If you go to the left the incline is gradual but then you don’t get the view of the water while hiking.

Pretty clean, trail in good shape and there was a little water in the falls. A beautiful, warm, SoCal December day!

This is a nice easy trail you can take your kids and dog. It is well maintained by the city. It's also a nice trail for a jog.

Nice hike. Good times

I’ve read reviews saying to buy the adventure pass at big lots, but that didn’t work for me. I ended up getting mine at Big 5 Sporting goods in Burma Park but was told most of them carry it.

3 months ago

More of a walk than I hike. The majority of the “hike” is on a wide road that a car could drive up and there were way more bikers than hikers. Not much in the way of views either. Some cool rock formations were the most interesting thing. I was always waiting for something more. The loop took us about 1.5 hrs. I’m sure it would be much prettier in the Spring with the flowers blooming. This may be one of the better hikes in the area but it only gets 2 stars compared to other hikes I’ve been on around the world.

especially fun for a night hike

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