Seed the Day!

Hike Among Redwoods in Orange County at Carbon Canyon Regional Park

Hike Carbon Canyon Regional Park Coastal Redwood Grove

What happens when a local bank seeds a promotion? Redwoods! At least in the case of the amazing redwoods you’ll find on a 2-mile loop hike in Brea’s Carbon Canyon Regional Park. The Carbon Canyon Regional Park Coastal Redwood Grove is by far the largest of its kind in Southern California, comprising 241 Sequoia sempervirens specimens. The tallest is nearly 100 feet! They were planted here in the 1970s when seedlings were donated during a local bank promotion. Park rangers have put forth intensive efforts to keep them healthy in the arid Orange County environment.

Pay the entrance fee ($3 on weekdays, $5 on weekends) and pass the first paved lot to a gravel road that takes you to plenty more parking (south lot) and find the marked trailhead at the east end of the lot. Head south on the wide dirt trail and turn right at the first T-junction and left at the second (conveniently, both have signs pointing you to the redwoods!). The trail is bordered by dense shrubs and walnut trees—look for piles of branches that represent the dens of dusky-footed woodrats and listen for resident towhees and robins. After half a mile, the giant arboreal wonders come into view.

As you walk along the mulch-covered soil (manicured specifically for the trees), you’re likely to feel the 10+ degree temperature drop. Be sure to read the interpretive signs about the grove’s history and maintenance (we especially liked the stories about the sprouts at the base of the tree—no spoilers!). Take a seat on one of the benches and relax under the redwoods.

Hike Carbon Canyon Regional Park Coastal Redwood Grove

Before heading back, you can take a brief side trip up the steep trail at the southwestern corner of the grove. This will take you out of the park but will reward you with views overlooking the grove and the Carbon Canyon Dam and town of Brea to the west.

undefined

Head back down and through the redwood grove again to return to your original trail. On the way back, however, head left toward the dam at the junction, which leads you back to the trailhead and lot, completing the loop.

BONUS BEER: Green Cheek Beer Co. in nearby north Orange does drive-by pickups of growlers, including perennial favorites and seasonal rotations (we like We Got the Weekend IPA, and Strawberry in Berlin, perfect for a hot day).

NOTE: Parking is limited at Carbon Canyon this summer due to construction work on site. Arrive early. Dog-friendly!

Trending Stories NorCal

View all Stories
  1. Woman hiking the Coastal Trail in the Marin Headlands

    Three Beaches to the Wind

    This beautiful 7-mile (round-trip) coastal hike in the Marin Headlands connects three beaches: Muir Beach, Pirates Cove, and Tennessee Cove.

    View
  2. Damme Good Camping

    Just a few miles south of the town of Mendocino is one of the best hike-in (or bike-in) campgrounds on the California coast. Van Damme State Park follows Little River inland from the ocean, and the nine first-come, first-served environmental campsites can be reached via the Fern Canyon Trail.

    View
  3. Hike Mount Tamalpais Matt Davis Steep Ravine Dipsea to Stinson Beach

    Tam Slam!

    This 8-mile (round-trip) hike is a pure classic, with redwoods, water-flows, and soaring views of the coastline. Oh yeah, and that ladder!

    View
  4. Calaveras Giants

    Contending as some of the tallest, mightiest, and most muscular spectacles in the state are the hulking (and beautiful) trees of Calaveras Big Trees State Park. Hit the trails to witness spectacular groves of giant sequoia redwoods.

    View

Trending Stories SoCal

View all Stories
  1. Sponsored

    Best of the Summer Fests!

    Outdoor winery events featuring films, food, wine, live music, and Sonoma’s cinematic scenery in the background: now that’s a blockbuster summer weekend!

    View
  2. Hiker on Proctor Mountain Loop Trail in Sun Valley Idaho

    Storied Trail

    If ever there was a fairy trail, this 6.8-mile lollipop loop on Sun Valley’s Proctor Mountain is it. The Proctor Mountain Trail is a storied route in more ways than one, starting with its tranquil oasis memorial for a famous writer, Ernest Hemingway.

    View
  3. Two bikers on the Wood River Trail in Sun Valley Idaho

    Two Wheels to Zen

    The family-friendly Wood River Trail goes over an historic bridge, past art sculptures and ranch-roaming horses, all amid sprawling green valley and a mountainous backdrop. Roll out from the Farmers Market at River Run Lodge and pedal the 8-mile (round-trip) ride to Sun Valley’s Sawtooth Botanical Garden.

    View
  4. This Part of the Backbone

    The Ray Miller Trail comprises the final stretch of the Backbone Trail in Malibu’s Point Mugu State Park, and makes an idyllic moderate beach hike during spring and early summer.

    View