If you’ve followed this blog for very long you know that I love traveling to Orange County and that it is one of my most frequented destinations. A trip to OC makes for a great overnight or day trip as the plane ride from PHX is a mere hour and twenty minutes. These kinds of quick trips to California are one of my favorite perks of having flight benefits!
Last month I did an overnight trip to get away to the beach and relax over a weekend. I hit up a few of my usual favorite including Sidecar Donuts (seriously amazing!) and 1,000 Steps Beach. But the highlight of the trip for me was exploring a new hiking trail.
I’d done my research before the trip as I’d wanted to find a relatively easy hike to do in Orange County that would provide me with ocean views. I ended up deciding to hike to Aliso Peak and prayed for good weather. I selected the hike because it was only one and a half mile and didn’t have any crazy gains. Plus it had the coveted ocean views that I was wanting. The hike didn’t disappoint!
I set Google Maps to 22739 Talavera Dr, Laguna Niguel, CA 92677 and parked along the street. There were only a few other vehicles there and plenty of space along the street.
In fact, if it weren’t for the fact that I’d read up on it online I wouldn’t have realized that there was a trailhead here. Up ahead you can see the gate for a private housing community and to the right of that is where the trail starts.
And in case anyone is wondering…another reason Orange County if my favorite is because the rental cars I get from Orange County Airport are always awesome. This was my vehicle this trip:
But back to the hiking…the trail starts out fairly wide and has some picnic tables at the very beginning of the hike.
And eventually the trail narrows and turns into a steep decline. And when I say decline I mean I was moving pretty slow for fear of slipping. To say that I got a major calf workout on my way back up that portion of the trail would be an understatement. I also failed to take any pictures during this part of the hike – ha!
After a little bit the trail levels out and you eventually see a fork in the trail and get to start enjoying the wonderful ocean views. Head to the left at the fork and you’ll go around and eventually have the option to follow a steep path down. I stopped once the trail rounded around the peak and had a steep drop off. If you go to the right at the fork you go the very short distance to the top of the peak and are rewarded with some wonderful views! There’s also a single bench up there if you want to sit and enjoy the ocean view.
I was lucky enough to have beautiful clear weather while I was there. And despite the fact that it was a fairly warm day this Phoenix girl was still happy for the relief from 100+ degree weather! Hiking is something that I have to put on hold during the summer months in Phoenix so the ability to enjoy a gorgeous hike in good weather was such a treat. Not to mention ocean views aren’t something I get to see every day!
If you’re in the Laguna Beach area I highly recommend this trail. You can also check out my 24 Hours in Laguna Beach post for more things to do.
And if you feel like rewarding yourself for all those calories burned (especially if you also visit 1,000 Steps Beach in the same day like I did!) then I’d highly recommend making the drive over to Costa Mesa to enjoy a donut from Sidecar Donuts. Their butter and salt donut is my absolute favorite donut in the entire world!
Pssst! I decided to take the plunge and setup a Facebook page for the blog. I’m still setting up shop but I’d love to have you join me on Facebook. In fact, it would make my day! =)