Explore the most popular trails near Trabuco Canyon with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

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Trabuco Canyon, California Map
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on Trabuco Trail

hiking
2 days 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.

Did this trail about 6 years ago. Did not plan well for it, but made it. Took is about 8.5 hours, we came down in the dark. Parts of the trail are unshaded, so wear a hat and sunscreen on hot days. Otherwise, amazing views of Southern California. We could see Catalina, the San Gabriel Range, down to the hills around Hemet and Temecula.

This was the first long hike ever. 20 miles to be exact. We started at 6am and ended at 4pm. We climbed to the towers/ summit ate lunch, and headed back. It was an entire day of hiking and we added an extra 5 miles by going a bit off trail but it was fun. I must say it was very busy at the top. There was a motocross race, a hike/ run, and some sort of jeep off road event all on the same day. Made it interesting though. The views looking toward the west (orange county) were amazing. The mountains just went on and on forever! Very cool to see from the summit. Definitely going back soon!

Great little hike , great for pictures ! Very popular spot.

trail running
14 days ago

It's an ass kicker of a trail. It's definitely not moderate. 4500 feet of elevation gain and pretty close to 14 miles. Be prepared for the leg burn

Ran this trail to the Red Canyon; very nice trail for beginners. Hot during the summers and not a lot of shade once you work your way towards the canyon. Bring lots of water

This was a fun hike! It climbs about 4000 feet, but really most of the trail is long switchbacks, so it’s a slow burn. The summit is not spectacular but getting there is.

Great trail after you get past the initial intro hike to the actual “Red Rock Trail”. The hike is fairly easy, about 4.5 miles from the entrance, all the way through and back from the end trail point at Red Rock. The initial trek from entrance to the Red Rock Trail can be a little overwhelming with the amount of bicyclists riding back and forth. Nevertheless, we enjoyed the trail and there was plenty of wildlife to observe throughout the hike. The hike gets 4/5 stars solely based on the amount of bicyclists and the fact that dogs are NOT allowed. We would definitely frequent this trail if we are short on time and want to get a good hike on over the weekend.

Borrego is your starting point for many of the connecting trails. The trailhead for Red Rock can be a bit hard to find off Mustard, and is easily confused with Cattle Pond. Red Rock is a .5 mi single trail that is fairly easy and very much worth the hike.

Finally made it to the red rocks, easy trail. Hubby and I had a great time making this hike.

Tends to be a bit crowded at times, but a nice hike overall with very nice views.

I like to see why people rate trails the way they do because it gives me an insight to what the trail is like.

The trail is approximately 4.4 miles out and back, and is an easy trail. If you go on a busier day watch out for bicyclists.

The trail starts off on a dirt path among a residential area. Then the dirt path becomes a path of sand in some areas. About a mile in you can’t see houses anymore. Make sure to grab a map at the trail head as there are other trails that connect to this one. If you don’t grab a map that’s ok because halfway up the trail there is another map posted and there are markers along the way to help you stay on the right path.

We really enjoyed the hike because it was easy to hike with a one year old. The trail is nice, different and interesting because of the change from dirt to sand to red rock. It’s also clean. The only thing I didn’t like very much is having to share it with cyclists. Also, note that dogs are not allowed on this trail and that there is a $3 fee at the parking lot.

off road driving
21 days ago

This is a great trail to do with great scenery and views. Start off early in case all of the trail gates are open so that you have enough time to turn back around. You will need a 4x4 vehicle in some areas. Please don’t liter and help keep these trails clean for everyone’s enjoyment.

off road driving
21 days ago

This is a great trail to do with great scenery and views. Start off early in case all of the trail gates are open so that you have enough time to turn back around. You will need a 4x4 vehicle in some areas. Please don’t liter and help keep these trails clean for everyone’s enjoyment.

off road driving
24 days ago

This trail is not currently open for off-road driving use. It looks like it has been closed to vehicle traffic for sometime. Just an FYI

off road driving
24 days ago

This is not a hard trail. I did this today in my stock G5 4Runner. No issues at all.

off road driving
1 month ago

Did a day and night run last weekend (12/3/17) in a stock 1997 Subaru Impreza Outback Sport. Although bumpy as heck, the majority of the trail was quite mild and very accessible to 2wd and factory height cars as we saw a Toyota Prius, Mini Cooper and Infiniti G35 Sedan among the trails as well! There are several "side quests/challenges" that would serve some 4x4 fun along with Holy Jim trail, but not so sure our little Subie could tackle it without a lift and some good rubber! Great trail for beginners and relaxed trail cruising!

Entrance is gated off from where this map takes you, but up the hill about a minute there is a small white cement wall with a trail leading to dreaded hill peak. Beautiful to watch sunset! About a mile hike up, which was pretty easy. Beware of bikers and rattle snakes!

Difficult both in grade and trail condition. The trail narrows considerably and becomes overgrown after about a mile, which makes it pretty difficult to navigate. The shrubbery encroaching on the trail wasn't very fun, and combined with loose scree and shale as well as a relatively steep incline in many places, it wasn't very friendly to hikers. I was 3.5 miles in after about 1.5 hours of hiking, and decided to turn around, so I can't comment on the rest of the trail. Side note: The Lazy W Camp Office sells day passes for $5.

amazing views, great hike once you get on the trail.

dirt road sucks getting there..3 miles of bumpy bump rocks and gravel

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