Great hikes: Head to the Crafton Hills

Great hikes: Head to the Crafton Hills

I’m always on the lookout for hikes that feature our area’s rich California native habitat and wildlife — and Crafton Hill’s Grape Street Trail in Yucaipa provides plenty of that. It’s an intermediate trail that takes you up a not-too-steep hill to nice views [Read more...]

Great Hikes: ‘Wild’ Wildwood Canyon State Park

Great Hikes: ‘Wild’ Wildwood Canyon State Park

I discovered another great, secluded hiking area in the inland area  - Wildwood Canyon State Park –  tucked away off Wildwood Canyon Road in Yucaipa, California. In another example of the importance of land conservation [Read more...]

Great hikes: Oakmont Park (Redlands CA)

Great hikes: Oakmont Park (Redlands CA)

In 2010, Carol Blaney moved with her family to the Inland Empire from Yosemite National Park, where as an interpretive park ranger she worked with Yosemite’s stunning scenery as her backdrop. The transition was helped when Blaney came across Redland’s Oakmont Park – she felt she had discovered a wild place. [Read more...]

Great hikes: Coachella Valley’s McCallum Trail

Great hikes: Coachella Valley’s McCallum Trail

I finally made it out to Coachella Valley Preserve  in Thousand Palms CA (near Palm Springs) to check out one of the hikes, the McCallum Trail, which in only two miles takes you through two palm oases, across the San Andreas Fault zone and through a desert wash. [Read more...]

Great Hikes: Steep but Satisfying Frankish Peak (Upland CA)

Great Hikes: Steep but Satisfying Frankish Peak (Upland CA)

Note: I’ve started a new category “Great Hikes” which features especially good hiking experiences in native habitat and wildlife  (for now in Southern CA.)

I tend to prefer hikes where I have the place to myself. Frankish Peak north of Upland CA satisfies that need, and a recent May late afternoon hike resulted in zero fellow hikers but multiple wildlife sightings amidst beautiful scenery. It’s very steep however, rising 1900 feet in 2 miles, so keep that in mind. (it’s also why there are so few people…)  Highlights: the hilltop effect of mating butterflies, [Read more...]

Great Hikes: Caroline Park’s Lush Natives       (Redlands CA)

Great Hikes: Caroline Park’s Lush Natives (Redlands CA)

I just did a walk up to Caroline Park and luckily had my camera to capture the flowering natives, birds and bunnies. Caroline Park is a native plant park set aside in Redlands CA by Olivia Phelps (of the Phelps-Dodge family) in 1929 to honor her sister Caroline. While the many flowering plants in spring to early summer make it an especially beautiful walk, there’s always something blooming [Read more...]