Laguna Coast Wilderness Park Hike
|In This Guide|
|Distance||7.5 miles (12.1 km)|
|Hike Time||3 Hours (Total)|
|Total Ascent (?)||1,120 feet (341m)|
|Highest Elevation||840 feet (256m)|
|Fees & Permits||Parking Fee|
|Park Contact||Laguna Coast Wilderness Park|
A Laguna Coast Wilderness Park hike transports you into how coastal California had existed thousands of years ago. You’ll hike through some of the last untouched coastal canyons in California, enjoying pristine coastal sage scrub, ridges with panoramic views, and abundant wildlife, including over 40 endangered species. This hike through Laguna Coast Wilderness Park takes you over the best trails, and you’ll get a taste of all the types of scenery that the park has to offer.
All 7000 acres and 40 miles of trails at Laguna Coast Wilderness Park are part of the Natural Community Conservation Planning program. The state program works with county and local governments to protect land with fragile ecosystems and endangered species. You can learn more about all abundant plants and animals when you start he hike at the Nix Nature Center, which has volunteers and interpretive displays, and lists of recent wildlife sightings.
Where is Laguna Coast Wilderness Park?
Use this trailhead address: 18751 Laguna Canyon Rd, Laguna Beach, CA, 92651, USA.
Laguna Coast Wilderness Park is open from 8am to 5pm. The parking lot usually fills up by 9am on weekends, and they will close the lot if it’s full. Pay for parking at the machine and leave the ticket on your dashboard.
The Nix Nature Center, located at the end of the parking lot, has free trail maps, bathrooms, and a place to fill up on water. Stop by, sign the registry (mandatory), and take a look at the wildlife spotting board. Even if there’s no endangered species around when you visit, there will probably be plenty of hawks, mule deer, weasels, and falcons.
Gear for the Hike
While you can get away with fitness clothes, I do recommend wearing hiking gear. It’s a long-ish hike and it can get very hot during the day. Bring plenty of water.
Here’s the gear that I personally use, have tested, and recommend for this hike*.
My best lightweight pack for hikes between 3-10+ hours. I use mine with the 3L water bladder from Osprey.
You can text, SOS, and get weather in the backcountry where your cell phone doesn’t work. Literally a life-saver.
Modern materials mean you get the protection of a traditional hiking boot (waterproof, etc.) with feel of a sneaker.
If you’re not using poles yet, you should be. This model takes a beating, is light, and is super comfortable.
I use a light inner toe sock and then a top-quality outer sock to prevent blisters.
Probars are great: no preservatives, vegan, low-GI, compact, and tasty. Put good fuel in your body.
If you’re hiking in the backcountry it makes sense to have a decent emergency kit and some basic gear to spend the night in a pinch.Full HikingGuy Gear List
* No company pays me to promote or push a product, all the gear you see here is gear I use and recommend. If you click an REI link and buy gear, I get a small commission that helps offset website expenses. There is no cost to you.
Also → Big Sale at REI On Now:
Laguna Coast Wilderness Park Trail Maps
There other hiking trails in Laguna Coast Wilderness Park. If you want a shorter (or longer) hike, the rangers in Nix Nature Center can help you out. They’re great at putting hikes together to suit your parameters. And the trails on the Laguna Coast Wilderness Park hike are shared with mountain bikers and horses. Give them a wide berth and let them pass.
Laguna Coast Wilderness Park Hike Map Downloads
Download the Hike GPX File
View a Printable PDF Hike Map
Laguna Coast Wilderness Park Hike Directions
Did something change on this hike? If so, please contact me and let me know. I'll update the guide.