Barrel of Fun

Hike and Wine Taste in Palmdale in Antelope Valley

Put a spring in your step and a barrel in your belly with a visit to Palmdale on the southern edge of the Antelope Valley. Here you’ll find the 2.75-mile out-and-back Barrel Springs Trail and a local winery that shares part of the nomenclature.

Park at the southern Daniel A. Mahoney trailhead just off the Pearblossom Highway (CA-122) to begin your scenic stroll. The hilly ups and downs are a decent workout with over 200 feet of elevation gain that bonuses in constant views of Antelope Valley. To the south see the hulking San Gabriels that separate you from the Los Angeles Basin. A few spur trails lead to hilltops for even more expansive desert views.

The wide dirt path is framed by a wooden fence throughout, which is often crowded by junipers whose sweet scent offsets their rugged appearance. Keep an eye out for Joshua trees. Toward the end of your one-way, reach a postcard-perfect wooden bridge over a stream (often flooded during storms). The turn-around point is at Tejon Park and Equestrian Arena.

BARREL BONUS: Head north to Lancaster to find the wine tasting room for Thief and Barrel, a local spot that brings joy both in the form of good wine and friendly service. Chief Sommelier DiMaggio provides excellent recommendations, but you can’t go wrong with their primary tasting set offering an array of sweet and dry whites, reds, and specialty creations like hibiscus wine—yes, made from the flower!

To get to the eastern Barrel Springs trailhead and lot, take the CA-14 to Palmdale and merge onto the CA-122, heading northeast. After 2.2 miles, turn left onto 25th St. E., followed by an immediate left onto Barrel Springs and the dirt parking lot. Dog-friendly!

Trending Stories NorCal

View all Stories
  1. Ridgetop Rolling

    Tilden Regional Park is the flagship of the East Bay Regional Parks system. And its best views? Find them along Nimitz Way, a paved, multi-use ridgetop trail. We recommend biking this trail for about 4 miles.

    View
  2. Wide-Open Wildcat

    Sure, peak-bagging hikes are great, but ridge trails? Well, those might be the best. The East Bay’s Wildcat Canyon Regional Park is home to a fantastic ridgetop rolling trail.

    View
  3. Bird Rock

    Other than the Birdman of Alcatraz, Robert Stroud, birds aren’t typically the first thing you think of with Alcatraz. When it was a working prison there wasn’t much bird life. But now? Well, the birds are back!

    View
  4. Forest Bathe Under the Redwoods

    Giant Douglas firs and a peaceful madrone- and tanoak-studded forest make the hiking at Sanborn County Park sublime, but there’s an added majesty here thanks to the Todd Creek Redwoods Grove.

    View

Trending Stories SoCal

View all Stories
  1. Sponsored

    Monterey Bay Aquarium Reopens!

    The wildlife has been waiting patiently … and now, at long last, they’re ready for their close-ups! As California reopens make new memories at the reopened Monterey Bay Aquarium!

    View
  2. Beach Walk + Cambodia Town

    A trip to Long Beach is not complete without a … long walk on the beach. But add a little extra with a walk through Cambodia Town, featuring local murals and delicious food.

    View
  3. Hodges and Hodgee Monster

    Escondido’s Lake Hodges is one of the most beautiful lake settings in San Diego, with Kumeyaay history, phenomenal birdwatching, a world-record-holding bridge, and a resident lake monster!  Do a 5.5-mile shoreline hike here ...  

    View
  4. Go For Guajome

    Head to Guajome County Park in Oceanside for a hidden lake twofer hike via a 4-mile loop trail traversing most of the 394-acre haven.

    View