Crystal Cove – El Moro Canyon State Park

SpringRachell and I left our apartment just a little before nine in the morning, Sunday prior to the storm.  In our haste, we forgot the coins that made up the fifteenth dollar set aside for parking at El Moro Canyon Ranger Station.  I tried to haggle with fourteen dollars in my fist, but was declined and sent forth with no parking pass.  But as we were heading out, a little yellow bird sang us a song about the top of Moro Canyon Trail…where parking was cheap, to say the least.

So we parked, and hiked down to the trail head which began a journey through Crystal Cove & El Moro Canyon State Park.  Three miles of beach front with 3,000 acres leading deep into the San Joaquin Hills, the Moro Canyon Trail gave way to plenty of views, long declines and steep (steep) inclines (if you chose the proper trails).

We didn’t see too much wildlife, save for a several crows, but we did see plenty of flowers in bloom.  It was overall a pleasant hike; the cloud cover presented, by the passing storm, was much more appreciated than heat from a clear day (especially due to the predominately treeless park).

My favorite place in the park was on the Moro Canyon Trail which led up and through a creek bed that had plenty of foliage.  Large oaks and a variety of other trees, gave way to a beautiful canopy that hid wonderful little alcoves tucked between rocks and boulders (we saw a couple breaking in a hollowed out area in the side of a cliff).

Greater Orange CountyRach/Dave






I also enjoyed the park where we initially arrived.  The sweeping views from the peak, gave way to the Orange County Great Park, the Tustin Airfields, South Coast Plaza and Greater Orange County.  You really don’t know the beauty of Orange County until you experience the flatness of the Midwest.

Thanks for reading and feel free to send me suggestions.



Orange County Trails:

Aliso & Wood Canyons Wilderness Park

Peters Canyon Regional Park

Santiago Oaks Regional Park


Photos: El Moro Canyon

Map: Crystal Cove & El Moro Canyon State Park

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