East Los Robles Loop
- Location: Foothill Drive, Thousand Oaks. From the 101 Freeway, take the Hampshire Rd. exit (41). Head south for 0.2 mile, turn right on Foothill Drive and go 0.1 mile to where the road bends. Park where available, noting posted restrictions. The Google Maps address 3254 Foothill Drive, Thousand Oaks, CA 91361 will get you the approximate location.
- Agency: Conejo Open Space Foundation
- Distance: 2.3 miles
- Elevation gain: 550 feet
- Difficulty Rating: PG
- Suggested time: 1.5 hours
- Best season: October – June
- Recommended gear: hiking poles sun hat
- Dogs: Allowed on leash
- Cell phone reception: Good
- Water: None
- Restrooms: None
- Camping: None
- More information: Trail map (longer route) here; Map My Hike report here
- Rating: 5
This enjoyable suburban hike explores the eastern end of the Los Robles trail system. Highlights include panoramic views of the Santa Monica Mountains, the Simi Hills and if visibility is good, the Topa Topa Ridge and the San Gabriels. Ambitious hikers can easily extend this loop by heading westward on the Los Robles Trail, but for those short on time, the 2.3-mile route described below is a good workout conveniently located to Thousand Oaks and Westlake Village.
Begin by following the single-track leading southwest from Foothill Drive. It climbs steeply uphill to a T-junction with a dirt road (0.1 mile.) Hiking the loop counter-clockwise, as described here, allows you to break up the climbing and get the less interesting part of the hike (where it parallels the 101 Freeway) out of the way first. The fire road curves along the north face of the ridge, climbing gradually for one mile where it reaches a hub. An unmarked but clear and easy to follow use trail leads uphill 0.1 miles to a knoll that offers a 360-degree view.
After retracing your steps back to the junction, complete the loop by heading southeast on the fire road (listed on Google Maps as Fairview Fire Road). Skirting the edge of a canyon, it climbs briefly to an X-shaped intersection at a saddle. The hard left fork leads to another vista point; the right fork soon dead-ends. Bear left and continue downhill on the Fairview Fire Road, now a single-track to a junction, 1.9 miles from the start. Bear right onto an unsigned trail which drops steeply off the ridge. At a metal fence, a sign indicates “Trail closed ahead” but it is easy, and by all appearances legal, to skirt the side of the fence and complete the loop. Retrace your steps down the steep single-track back to your starting point.
Photo gallery (click thumbnails to see full sized versions)
Text and photography copyright 2017 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.