A new 5.2-mile trail that opens in Ladera Ranch on Saturday will allow hikers to trek from the mountains to the sea in south Orange County, providing a "missing link" from O'Neill Regional Park all the way to Doheny State Beach.
"The trail covers a wide variety of terrain and offers sweeping views of the Arroyo Trabuco, the foothills, and the views stretch all the way to the Pacific Ocean," said Diane Gaynor, a spokeswoman for the Ladera Ranch housing development, which built the trail. "You get some of the best overlooks of the arroyo that I've ever seen."
Combined with existing trails at O'Neill Park and in San Juan Capistrano, the new link creates a continuous 17-mile path from the foot of the Santa Ana Mountains to the beach, and includes steep climbs up ridgelines.
The path will be open to hikers and mountain bikers, and horseback riders in some areas.
The trail starts at the Oso Parkway Bridge, at the end of O'Neill Park's Arroyo Trabuco Regional Riding and Hiking Trail, and snakes along Trabuco Creek. After heading inland through the hills of Ladera Ranch, it finally connects to San Juan Capistrano's network of trails, which wind down to Doheny State Beach.