Fun By the Dozen in OC: Take a Hike

Posted January 18, 2012 by Elaine Cali

Check Out these 12 hikes in Orange County that take you to new heights.

Orange County might not be known for its wide open spaces, but don’t be fooled; we are much more than a concrete jungle. By the numbers, Orange County has more than 32,000 acres of urban wilderness parks.

If you’d like to venture off OC’s paved path, take a hike and discover places like Modjeska Canyon in Silverado Canyon. This bit of country in the middle of Orange County is a hidden oasis where it is not unusual to find a majestic oak tree growing in the middle of the road. There are no perfect, cookie-cutter homes here, just the real OC where nature rules. These regions are an ideal place to explore on foot and take in a mild stroll or rugged hike along side the Santa Ana Mountains and discover the picturesque vistas that reveal breathtaking city views.

A few more of my favorite hiking locations include:

Want more hikes? Mild to wild hiking trails are woven all throughout OC. Here are a few additional OC parks with hiking trails:

A few tips: 

With a little advance planning, you take a naturalist-led tour highlighting seasonal wildflowers or indigenous plants. There are also special hikes geared just for children or romantic, moonlight hikes. OC Wildlife and Beach Tour has a wonderful eco-tour that will take you to some beautiful places in OC with minimal walking.

Do your homework. I’ve been reading a new book about getting out in OC, entitled “Active in Orange County” and it’s helped me discover some new spots I can’t wait to try out. It outlines hikes, parks and seldom-discovered OC scenic spots.

Go shopping. Active lifestyle stores like REI have periodic classes on hiking and exploring Orange County’s outdoors. They give pointers of what to bring on a hike ensure maximum fun and safely too.

So what are you waiting for? Strap on some rugged hiking shoes and discover Orange County’s biggest playground- one that has nothing to do with manmade fun.

 

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