La Sierra Loop (Chino Hills)
- Location: Chino Hills, on the corner of La Sierra and Monteverde. From the 60 Freeway, take the Philips Ranch/Chino Hills Parkway exit. Head south (right if you’re coming from L.A. and Orange County; left if from the Inland Empire) and go 0.6 miles to Chino Avenue. Turn left and go 0.9 miles to La Sierra. Turn right and go 0.3 miles and park on the corner of La Sierra and Monteverde. From the 71 Expressway, take the Chino Ave. exit. Head west for 1.5 miles and turn left on La Sierra.
- Agency: City of Chino Hills
- Distance: 2.1 miles
- Elevation gain: 450 feet
- Difficulty Rating: PG
- Suggested time: 1 hour
- Best season: October – June
- USGS topo map: Ontario
- Recommended gear: hiking poles; sun hat
- More information: here; Everytrail report here
- Rating: 5
For a short suburban hike, this trail provides a pretty good cardio workout, with a lot of ups and downs. Scenic highlights include views of the San Gabriels, San Jacintos and Santa Anas. The trail is very conveniently located to residents of Chino Hills and the surrounding communities. The loop also provides access to other trails in the Chino Hills system, for those who want a longer hike.
From the corner of La Sierra and Monteverde, follow a short spur to the La Sierra Loop Trail. The loop can be hiked in either direction, but when you do it clockwise, as described here, you get to warm up your legs a little before making the big climb; also you save the best views on the route for the end.
Head left on the fire road (Redbird Road on some maps), and walk parallel to the edge of the housing development. Turn right at the first junction and head downhill. Although the sights and sounds of civilization aren’t far away, the walk becomes pleasantly quiet as you descend into a shallow canyon.
Just under a mile in, you arrive at another split, where you’ll head right (the left fork heads up to nearby Chino Hills Parkway). Soon you begin a short but steep ascent – about 400 feet in just over half a mile. If you have to stop and catch your breath, you can turn around and see great views of the Santa Ana Mountains to the southeast.
At the top, make a sharp right (1.5 miles from the start) and begin your descent. Here, you’ll be rewarded with your efforts with great views of Mt. Baldy and neighboring Ontario and Cucamonga Peaks, and you’ll get a panoramic view of the San Gabriel Valley and western end of the Inland Empire. Stay right one more time, and at two miles, you return to the spur. Head left and back to the car.
Text and photography copyright 2012 by David W. Lockeretz, all rights reserved. Information and opinions provided are kept current to the best of the author’s ability. All readers hike at their own risk, and should be aware of the possible dangers of hiking, walking and other outdoor activities. By reading this, you agree not to hold the author or publisher of the content on this web site responsible for any injuries or inconveniences that may result from hiking on this trail. Check the informational links provided for up to date trail condition information.