El Moro Canyon Loop Trail

MODERATE 736 reviews
#1 of 28 trails in

El Moro Canyon Loop Trail is a 5 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Laguna Beach, California that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Horses are also able to use this trail.

DISTANCE
5.0 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
816 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Loop

kid friendly

backpacking

birding

camping

hiking

horseback riding

mountain biking

nature trips

trail running

walking

beach

forest

views

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

no dogs

A trail that takes you through canyon and up to Moro ridge, with sweeping coastal views. The trail begins and ends at the El Moro Visitor Center. This loop gives you a tour of the El Moro Canyon, then climbs over 800' in elevation to the ridge line, where you'll enjoy some of the best coastline views in the park. Parking Fee: $15

hiking
4 days ago

It was amazing view! We loved this trail and will come back for the ocean view for sure! We hiked 6.2 miles for 2 hours!! Early morning is recommended as there is not much shade or canopy.

12 days ago

Great workout, watch out for flies on the uphill climb. Views are pretty sweet.

hiking
24 days ago

I love this hike for the following reasons:
1. It close to home - anywhere in south LA County or Orange County.
2. It is near the beach, so great views and bonus of spending part of the day on the beach after the hike.
3. Trails offer a variety so you can get the work-out you desire: short, long or difficult.
4. Choice of 4 campsites if you want to stay overnight.

1 month ago

Beautiful Mother’s day hike

1 month ago

Great hike, not too difficult. Only one uphill stretch otherwise very straightforward.

hiking
1 month ago

no shade. nice view of the ocean.

hiking
1 month ago

Great moderate hike, some of the inclines are a bit challenging but totally worth the views at the top. We took this counter clockwise and would definitely recommend doing the same so that you are rewarded with the breathtaking views at the end! Loved this hike and will be back for more in Crystal Cove!

1 month ago

Nice trail, has only one strenuous-ish ascend, the rest is pretty much easy/moderate. Saw a pack of coyotes who were scared off once we approached, lots of bunnies and birds. There were beautiful mountain views at the top and right before the descend (we went clock wise). Parking is $15 for the whole day but there’s a sunset rate from 5pm till sunset which is only $5. Saw a tow truck on the way back right before sunset, I guess they do enforce their parking policy. Definitely recommend and will come back.

2 months ago

We went to this trail at one of the hottest days in this summer. It is not an easy hike in the hot weather plus an exposed trail. However, an occasional ocean breeze is pleasant. We finished the 5 Miles within 2 hours! A nice Sunday work out!

hiking
2 months ago

Beautiful views of the ocean...beautiful 2 hour hike

2 months ago

Amazing place

hiking
2 months ago

There is no shade on this trail, as described previously. It would be a better hike on an overcast day - I was there in the full sun. The trail is well maintained. you don't have to go far to get a view of the ocean. Not sure there is enough on this trail to attract me back again, but it was a nice outing.

hiking
2 months ago

Great views of Crystal Cove. Absolutely no shade, but we went on the perfect June gloom day.

Enjoyed taking the beach access trail/tunnel near the end. Great family hike but fake note of the weather.

3 months ago

Apple maps took us to the other side. Upside is we did not have to pay for parking. Coming back was brutal uphill. Maybe went the wrong way but total hike was about 8 miles. Great workout.

hiking
3 months ago

Great trail. Scenic ocean and Laguna Beach.

hiking
3 months ago

4.5 because of the 15$ parking fee. great hike very enjoyable. only down fall is It seems as tho every annoying bug on the west coast lives at this park. great hike for getting into shape good elevations. as noted by others you will need lots of water.

hiking
3 months ago

First time hiking at Crystal Cove took the Moro Canyon easy hike. Absolutely beautiful views. The trail was easy enough for non-experienced hikers, but don't get me wrong it was an excellent workout and I broke a sweat. I will definitely be on this hiking path again. and will definitely try the other more advanced trails soon enough.

3 months ago

Lovely view of the beach on the loop back. Quite steep in some places, and gets a lot of sun exposure - would recommend going here earlier in the morning.

hiking
3 months ago

3 months ago

The views are absolutely stunning! But be prepared to hike steep to see them. Kid friendly if they are good hikers. My 5yr old was able to do it.

hiking
3 months ago

I have done every trail within Crystal Cove State Park & it is still my favorite place to bring visitors who have a hankering to hike.

There are lots of uphill trails which is always a plus for me. There are a variety of wide trails & single track trails (watch out for mountain bikers). This is also where I trained for a marathon I ran in Dingle Ireland because of the hills.

Unfortunately to hike on this side of the park it’s $15 to park, but you also have access to the beach.

Tips: bring sunscreen or a hat and pack plenty of water since there is very little shade; park on the backside of the park which borders Laguna Coast Wilderness Park if you don’t want to pay the steep parking fee.

hiking
3 months ago

Went later in the day on an overcast day, it was really enjoyable with some moderate challenge hills!

trail running
3 months ago

Cool trail. Nice view on the surrounding and ocean. Full of rabits.

hiking
3 months ago

Great ocean views, fairly steep inclines. We took the clockwise route around, so the way up was a moderate climb, saving the steeper parts for the descent.

hiking
4 months ago

It’s definitely pretty and the ocean views amazing. Lots of uphill though. Big disappointment in the description vs reality though. App says this trail boasts waterfalls, that is wrong. I chose it specifically for that reason and was quite disappointed to get there and hear there are no waterfalls as described.

hiking
4 months ago

Beautiful day on the hiking trails - Started on the No Dogs trail cut over to Ticketron to Fence Line to Slow and Easy to El Moro Canyon — 3.5 hours. Elevation climbed to ~1000ft., plenty of elevation variations but ending at El Moro trail is best because legs start to get tired. Definitely quieter on the Eastern side of the trails which is perfect! No snakes, whew! The $15 fee was a surprise but honestly it’s a very fair price to enjoy the hike and view.

hiking
5 months ago

Great, well maintained trails. The difficult trail is more, IMO, moderate. We find counter clockwise more strenuous then clockwise on this trail. Clockwise ends with a wonderful view of the ocean on your way down. Watch for snakes, look well ahead of you. We had one pass about 4 yards ahead of us.

hiking
5 months ago

We took the moderate path and loved it. Approx. 5 miles and it took us 90 minutes. The beginning was a good climb and then it got easier as we went along. Saw a few rabbits and baby snakes along the way. Nothing crazy though! Loved the views as you finish! Will only pay for 2 hours of parking next time.

5 months ago

Bugs... lots of bugs. Rare in California, but this place had them abundantly.... Nice views of the ocean.

hiking
6 months ago

Great place to hike!!!
We accidentally did the difficult course but was worth the reward at the end.
Warning for rattlesnakes. Some hikers reported one 30ft away from us on the trail but was gone by the time we arrived......phew!!!! Some narrow, sketchy areas on the tail end of the trail.

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