Best Guidebook Award: Rocky Mountain Outdoor Writers & Photographers
Orange County lies along the coast in southern California between Los Angeles and San Diego. The county is framed by the Pacific Ocean on one side while the Santa Ana Mountains stretch along the entire back side of the county. The coast-to-mountain landscape creates an interesting, diverse terrain that offers many opportunities for exploration.
Despite the urban encroachment, nearly 30% of Orange County is preserved as city parklands, wilderness preserves, national forests, and state parks. Along the county’s 44 miles of shoreline reside long stretches of sandy beaches, marine terraces, and promontories. The Cleveland National Forest and the San Mateo Canyon Wilderness cover thousands of acres of forested canyons and plateaus in the Santa Ana Range. This essential guide describes how to get to backcountry trailheads in the Santa Anas, the best trails to hike in the county’s expansive parklands, and where to find access points to the coastline. Several inviting urban routes are included as well. Highlights of the hikes include sheltered coves, tidal estuaries, forested canyons, cascades, weathered sandstone peaks, and vista points with views from the ocean to the cities.
A range of hikes is included, from easy coastal walks to strenuous hillside climbs. Statistics, accurate directions, and a map for every hike makes these adventures stress free. Dog access information is included, as well as a thorough index.
Companion guides include Day Hikes On the California Southern Coast and Day Hikes Around Los Angeles.
Each hike includes:
- detailed map
- accurate driving and hiking directions
- distance/time/elevation statistics
- list of relevant maps
- summaries to help hikers find a trail appropriate to their ability and desire
- several overall maps to show the hikes in the greater area