Aliso and Woods Canyon Wilderness Park
|Top of the World Park|
Aliso and Woods Canyon is one of my favorite places to mountain bike in Orange County. I usually park at the entrance on Alicia Parkway, take the paved Aliso Creek Trail south, and then head off road on right-hand spur trail for the Wood Canyon Trail. The Wood Canyon Trail leads slightly uphill to Dripping Hole Cave. It’s an easy trail for beginners. If you feel like exercising, you can continue a few miles past Dripping Hole Cave and head up the steeper section of the Woods Canyon Trail to Canyon View Park. Canyon View Park has water fountains and a public restroom for a well-deserved rest at the top.
If you really want to try a butt-kicking ride, you can continue past Canyon View Park and pick up the Cholla Trail, then the Lynx Trail, and finally connect to the West Ridge Trail which will take you to the Top of theWorld Park. You can re-fill your water bottle in the park and then head back down to your car. I would only recommend attempting to bike from Alicia Parkway to Top of the World Park if you’re in pretty decent shape. The last section can be rough trip, especially when you’ve already been heading uphill for several miles. If you’re a beginner, a great way to do this ride is to use a two car shuttle. You can park at the Top of the World Park and bike downhill to the parking lot on Alicia Parkway and then drive back up the to your car. It’s about an 11 mile drive back to the parking lot on Alicia Parkway.
Regardless of whether you plan on hiking or biking all the way to Canyon View Park or the Top of the World, I highly recommend taking the spur trail and checking out Dripping Hole Cave. It’s not a huge cave by any stretch of the imagination, but it’s one of the largest natural inland caves in Orange County.
Aliso and Woods Canyon Wilderness Park Address:
28373 Alicia Parkway
Laguna Niguel, CA 92677