Main Divide Road

MODERATE 46 reviews
#33 of 121 trails in

Main Divide Road is a 19.9 mile moderately trafficked point-to-point trail located near Lake Elsinore, California that offers scenic views and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, mountain biking, and off road driving and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

19.9 miles
4,931 feet
Point to Point

dog friendly


mountain biking

off road driving


2 months ago

Took the trail in my completely stock 2012 tacoma trd off road dropped into 4x4 hi but I feel like I didn’t really need too. Some minor ruts but I made it through with stock clearance. It was very rocky in some sections. Will be back again with a lift bigger tires and aired down just to take away from the rocky sections.

off road driving
2 months ago

Took my 89 XJ down the trail and had no problems, just pick good lines because some of those ruts could leave you on your side or worse.

off road driving
3 months ago

pretty fun, some pretty big ruts along the way, but nothing to crazy.

off road driving
8 months ago

we took this Trail last Sunday and had a good time running it. Most of it is easy, though there are some severe short where people have tried to pass it with two wheel drive vehicles and dugout deep holes. those areas I would consider moderate. We were in a Jeep JK and have it in 4-wheel drive high and never even slipped a tire. it has great views both East and West at various times. A fun couple of hours for a Sunday afternoon.

off road driving
10 months ago

I have a C1500 and a K2500. I've done the drive a couple of times. I think I'm done taking the 4x4 due to the weight. My 1500 has a locking rear diff and as long as I pick good lines through rough spots, it does just fine with less jarring. The views are as good as anywhere in OC.
BTW, the last two hundred feet (past the towers out to the main vista point) is very rocky and worth a word of caution.

off road driving
Sunday, July 30, 2017

This is a fun drive not far from lake Elsinore. The views of Lake Elsinore and the surrounding Mountains are amazing. I'd say 4WD required in some spots, and be mindful of the narrow climb areas, there's not many places to let someone by if you come nose to nose with another vehicle while going up.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

fun travel

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Good ride rather more open road!

off road driving
Thursday, June 01, 2017

Did this trail Memorial Day Weekend 2017. This was a really fun Trail easily accessible to anybody in LA/OC. Check online to ensure the gates are open with the Cleveland National Forest Website. The start of the trail from the Ortega Highway route was pretty rutted at first but smooths out after a couple miles. Definitely has its challenges, but shouldn't have any issues with 2WD and decent clearance. Did it with ease in my basically stock 4Runner, used 4WD because I wanted to not because I had to. Santiago Peak is a nice stopping point to stop and grill out with a nice view. Went down the Maple Springs route which totaled out to a roughly 30 miles trail (20 on Main Divide and 10 on Maple Springs). There's a couple different combinations to get up and down including Maple Springs, Indian Truck Trail, or taking Main Divide Road the whole way. Will run this trail again.

off road driving
Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Did this trail in a Subaru Crosstrek (thank you Subaru for making rugged little cars capable of taking a beating) anyway, 91/2 inches of clearance and skid plates did help, wouldn't recommend any clearance below that. We went both from Ortega to just below Santiago Peak and from Maple Springs to Modjeska peak on different days,be warned, there is a NASTY NASTY rut about 400yds below the summit of Santiago Peak, it's all the way across the road and is very deep (probably a foot or deeper), we almost ripped the front bumper off trying to get through it and never did. There are some very tough spots that have had several rock slides and are only loose shale, parts of the trail are severely washed out, and there are some spots where you don't want to look down if you're afraid of heights (on the Ortega side, Maple Springs isn't as bad) the forest service does close this trail during the winter (Novemberish-Marchish depending on weather and trail damage from rains) and there is no OHV access during that time from Indian,Harding,Bedford or Maple Springs,(truck trails) or from off Ortega hwy. It's a fun trail, but it is trying at times and we took a couple pretty gnarly hits on the skid plates so be wary of loose rock, washes, and some nasty terrain. Beautiful view once you hit the peaks though that made it worth the beating.

off road driving
Sunday, December 18, 2016

Very scenic but all of the dirt roads have been closed off to off-road vehicles only bikes and hikers were allowed

off road driving
Monday, November 21, 2016

Can't take Razors or Mavericks on the trail. Was told by forest service today. Couldn't rate the rest of the trail because I never got to do it. But getting there was easy.

off road driving
Sunday, October 09, 2016

great trail glad to see it so active but lots of speeding drivers be safe yall

off road driving
Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Great trail for 4x4. If you don't have high clearance or a 4x4 you will struggle with the trail. Did it in a Ram Powerwagon, it was tight in some bits but made it with zero issues. You take the directions off the Ortega Highway for Bluejay campground, continue straight and once you hit a gravel road, there's a white gate on the left. Drive through and enjoy. Did there and back in about three hours. Lot's of scenic views and a good way to test different aspects of your 4x4.

Thursday, August 11, 2016

This trail was so much fun! Tacoma double cab sport took it on. Some deep crevices but stock could prob make it. A little bit of everything on this one. Flat trail, rocky trail, scenic all rolled into one. Hard to find. Make a right at North main divide, it's a paved road, go up about three miles and it'll be on your left. Alot of fun!

Thursday, May 05, 2016

The directions on this app are wrong. This trail is a bit hard to get to but once you do there are great views! Trail traffic is almost non-existent. There are a few large ruts in the road, but my king quad had to problem going over it. I would suggest a 4x4.

off road driving
Sunday, January 03, 2016

Great time...brought my Polaris RZR 1000 turbo had no problems with the terrain, great views!!

off road driving
Thursday, December 31, 2015

Took my Subaru Outback out for a spin today on the trail. Saw some awesome views and beautiful terrain! Definitely doable with any 4x4 drive car, my Subaru did fine but definitely would have been helpful to have a little more ground clearance. Only got about 8 miles in before turning around so I didn't do the complete trail but had a great time! Very highly recommended!!!

off road driving
Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Very fun drive. My wife and I took our dogs out for some 4x4 fun. There were a few spots that you could tell people chickened out on, leaving some big ruts in the road while they turned around after being stuck. All in all the trip was beautiful and very easily managed outside of 4x4. We have a Toyota 4Runner. There's a lot of different routes to take. I'm not sure if it comes out on the other side, but we have spent hours out there having fun. We stop to let the dogs out regularly and they can't get enough! Stop often and hike up for some spectacular views, particularly during sunrise/sunset.

Sunday, October 04, 2015

we tried to off road today, but the white gate was closed.

off road driving
Sunday, October 04, 2015

Update to my review for any first timers. If your following the apps directions through your smart phone it's going to route you to make a left or right turn into nothing/no entrance depending on where your coming from. Don't let this confuse you as there is a road with a sign that says main divide. For me coming from Lake Elsinore I needed to make a right into this road which was about a quarter mile before my Navigation said to make a left to get onto the starting road.

Now drive until you see I think it's called blue jay campground, pass that about another 1.5 miles until you wrap around a mountain and to your far left will see an open white gate leading up into a rocky trail. Now the trail actually begins (4x4 mandatory)

off road driving
Monday, September 28, 2015

Had a great time yesterday with my kids and Fiancé off roading in our new 2015 Ford F-150 4x4 Sport. It was a nice break in course and close to home since we're from Lake Elsinore but definitely ready for some rougher terrain given how easy the truck took on this one. Overall great time though.

off road driving
Friday, May 29, 2015

This is a great off road experience for my first time. Not too difficult, but a great place to get a good feel and learn your vehicle when off roading. Depending on what part of the road you start and head there were some steep roads (but uphill and downhill) with lots of rocks. Overall a very fun place to visit with lots of long trails. Found my way out at Indian truck trail. Have come back at least 2 more times since and visited the Santiago peak (radio towers)

off road driving
Monday, February 16, 2015

Fun trail ride! It is really bumpy due to the rocks which can get old after a while, but the views are awesome! To get to the trail start on North Main Divide Truck Trail, not the one where the pin is. Besides that confusion it was pretty simple to find. Also once you get to the top you can take Indian Truck Trail out and it will drop you off close to I-15. This is shorter than following the main divide and similar in difficulty level. We had a great time though!

off road driving
Monday, November 17, 2014

I did the south section of this trail. The trail was easy, that is if the highest and drop offs don't unnerve you. I was heading to the Wildomar OHV trail from Ortega hwy. I only did 6 mils of this trail and decided to turn back as it was getting late.

off road driving
Monday, December 16, 2013

We enjoyed the trail. Scene views of Lake Elsinore and the Ocean were beautiful. It was bumpy, rocky and hard for us beginners to find the right roads but buying a GPS might help us. We did run into very light snow and ice on the ground. Also, no identifiable birds or animals(one squirrel. The views and at times forest atmosphere of clean air and nature were fabulous.

off road driving
Friday, December 28, 2012

Pretty mellow of a trail a real easy drive a nice little hint when you get to the big radio tower thing bang hard right opposite the tower and there's a steep little climb great view and neat little camp fire spot. Also if heading back toward Ortega highway bang a left on the side trail only a couple 100 feet past that little climb pretty cool little trail to drive 4x4 and a little more recommended.

off road driving
Wednesday, January 11, 2012

in our truck 28 miles took a long time but the view is sweet! we picked up two different people on this trip... a biker that couldnt make it to the top and when we got to the top two guys that had a car break down on them.... always be aware of the worst that can happen and be ready for it when you drive somewhere that most people can't get to. a toe truck cost at lowest $200 a hour. just an FYI. next time we go I want to park and hike because in the car with bumps for 4 hours isnt going to cut it for me.

off road driving
Wednesday, December 14, 2011

This was a fun time and beautiful scenery! My wife and I and our dog Dyna are new to Southern California and to the off road lifestyle. We decided to take the afternoon and try to find a trail close to Lake Elsinore. We packed up the Jeep and followed the map provided here. Not good...not even close to be honest. The pins showing trail are not even close. Totally on wrong side of the highway actually. We spent 2 hrs trying to find a trail that was not even there. So for those of you like us who are not familiar with the area or common trails please know that the trail starts well on the Northern side of the Ortega Hwy where the pin drop is. You must go into the park past Blue Jay Campground and then turn left into white gate a mile or so past campground. Once we finally found it, it was great! Being new to off-roading we did not know what to expect. We read it was moderate. The reviews we found showed everything from being able to do trail in a "Honda Civic" to needing 4 wheel drive on loose shale sections. We took our time and never took our Wrangler out of 2 wheel drive but know for a fact you couldn't navigate this trail with a Honda Civic (stock anyway) if you were Captain Offroad America! So pack a lunch, be in a truck or SUV and head out for a beautiful journey! It was amazing!

1 month ago

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