16 days ago

This is a very solid hike in the dry Southern California Mountains. We did the Exploration Trail from the TH near Hwy 18 going uphill one way to the intersection of Keller Peak Rd. and the Exploration Trail ending point . It was a car shuttle (one car at the bottom, and the other near "Children's Forest"). We then drove to the top of Keller peak for some additional views. Note - the road gets very narrow from Children's Forest to the top of Keller Peak, though worth doing once. Avoid the drive on weekends. The 3,500 ft drop-off to the southwest near the top is impressive in spots. We saw no hiking trails there independent of the paved road, i.e., if your hiking to the top, your on the paved roads from Children's Forest to the top pretty much. Your welcome to climb the final fire outlook station once your at Keller Peak if personal is there (they are usually there). Our hike was just 4 miles long with 1440 ft elevation gain one way. Nicely kept trail, nothing "ledgy", and hard to go wrong. More Mountain bikes than hikers though. Some variety in scenery. Note - to go from "Children's Forest" to the peak, there is no clear trails to avoid the road, at least on the southern side, and we were looking for them, regardless of tracks on alltrails.