Peters Canyon Trail

Citrus Ranch Park, California

Elevation Gain217ft
Trailhead Elevation70ft
Elevation Min/Max55/143ft
Elevation Start/End70/70ft

Peters Canyon Trail

Peters Canyon Trail is a hiking, biking, and horse trail in Orange County, California. It is within Lower Peters Canyon, Peters Canyon Regional Park, Citrus Ranch Park, Orchard Hills, and Walnut. It is 7.9 miles long and begins at 70 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is 4.2 miles with a total elevation gain of 217 feet. Near the trailhead there is an information office. Along the trail there are benches, information maps, parkings, drinking waters, restroom, picnic sites, and parking. This trail connects with the following: West Irvine Trail and Hicks Canyon Trail.

Peters Canyon Trail Professional Reviews and Guides

"There are three primary trails in Peters Canyon Regional Park: Lakeview Trail, Lower Canyon Trail, and East Ridge Trail. East Ridge and Lower Canyon trails run parallel; a couple of decent singletracks connect the two routes. This loop follows the Lakeview Trail around the west side of the reservoir and then drops down the length of the Lower Canyon Trail. From the far end of the Lower Canyon Trail, a singletrack winds up to the East Ridge Trail. The route back includes a series of short, steep climbs and subsequent drops along the East Ridge. The last climb leads back to the Lakeview Trail. A short jaunt around the east side of the lake completes the loop. Alternatively, you could begin on the Lakeview Trail, climb immediately to the East Ridge, and then drop down to the Lower Canyon Trail on the Sage singletrack or the East Ridge singletrack. Then it is an easy ride up the Lower Canyon Trail back to the Lakeview Trail. This alternate loop offers a better, albeit short, downhill, but also one heck of a steep climb at the north end of the East Ridge."

"Peters Canyon Regional Park may be small, but it offers
great trails, a scenic lake, and a sense of being in the outdoors without straying too far from civilization. This is an easily accessible family hike, with options for longer treks if you wish.

This trail circles the fifty-five-acre Upper Peters Canyon Reservoir, which provides valuable habitat to migrating waterfowl. The rolling terrain takes you from marsh edge to open hillsides looking east over the lake toward the crest of the northern Santa Anas. This area originally was part of the Spanish Rancho Lomas de Santiago."

"Deeded to Orange County by the Irvine Company in 1992, Peters Canyon Regional Park has, like other newly declared open-space areas, gained almost instant popularity among lovers of the outdoors.

The park features the 55-acre Upper Peters Canyon Reservoir, several natural habitats (freshwater marsh, riparian woodland, grassland, and coastal sage scrub), and about 6 miles of trails. The shallow reservoir is not open to fishing, but birding is fine here."

"In 1899, “green space,” in these parts had an entirely different meaning than it does today. Here in a remote canyon, local sportsmen introduced golf to Orange County. Santa Ana and Orange duffers leased land from the Irvine Company and laid out a nine-hole course. The “greens” were oil-soaked earthen patches and the fairways were little more than brush-cleared canyon bottom. It must have been hard to make par in Golf Canyon, as it became known. Today Golf Canyon is the site of Peters Canyon Park, located on the edge of more suburbs-in-the-making on the eastern frontier of the communities of Orange and Tustin. The Irvine Company donated the park land in 1992."

"The park has more than six miles of hiking, biking, and equestrian trails across gravel roads and paths. The routes weave through rolling hillsides, riparian woodlands, and freshwater marsh and grassland habitats.

This hike circles the lake on rolling hillsides covered with coastal sage scrub, dotted with willows, sycamores, and cottonwoods."

"This hike strolls the length of the park, from Peters Canyon
Reservoir through Peters Canyon, making a return along the open
East Ridge View Trail. The route passes through lush groves of
willow, sycamore, cottonwood, and eucalyptus trees."

"This loop trail on the eastern edge of Orange County skirts a 55-acre reservoir past marshland, flowering cactus, and groves of willow, sycamore, and black cottonwood trees.

Hundred-foot elevation gains at a couple of points make this a little harder than the average reservoir loop trail. The trail can be extended by several more miles by taking one of the handful of moderate-to-difficult trails that wind through the southern portion of the park."

"Peters Canyon Park and Ride is as stated, albeit a tongue-twister: Park at the park, which is not a park and ride, and then ride the Park and Ride.

The park is Peters Canyon Regional Park, which encompasses about 350 acres of a long, somewhat narrow canyon and ridge in northeastern Tustin. Although the park is a habitat of a variety of flora and fauna, you will mostly see coastal sage scrub, grassland, and some cactus."

Peters Canyon Trail Reviews

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Easy track for beginner to get a feel for their bikes. Two steep climbs that'll test your legs, but other than that, a leisurely ride.
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Peter's Canyon Park has a great loop trail that if completed gives you a little under 6 miles of hiking ground. It is a fairly easy trail for the beginner and usually has quite a lot of people hiking, or biking on it. The bikers are friendly and curteous for the most part. There is not too much shade offered while hiking here, so bring water and a hat. Its not too far out of the city, which makes it very convienant for a late afternoon hike. For conditioning ones-self back into hiking this trail is perfect! Parking inside the park cost $3 on the weekday and I believe $5 on weekends, but there is also free parking nearby. Rattlesnakes have been spotted here, so watch your step.
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i use to do this once a week for a while. its a GREAT workout!! lots of good steep hills, popular among mounatin bikers. i saw a big old rattle snake on the side of the tail. thankfully it was angry. not much shade, lots of dirt and hills. i enjoy it
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Peter's Canyon was a secret to me until one day, on my lunch hour, I decided to get to the highest point possible above the city. All the big houses are up there, and I figured I would find a nice, quiet view. Well, the road ended up narrowing and after a few turns, I found an area with trails. I have been going to Peter's Canyon about once a week on my lunch hours to walk for a while now. You can see lots of nice homes, and the dastardly track homes surrounding the area, but the immediate areas surrounding the trails are just beautiful. The wildflowers went OFF earlier this season, and now it's just a wonderful, wooded place to walk with lots of life. It's such a relief to be there in the middle of the day. I have to recommend it for it's peacefulness!

Peters Canyon Trail Photos

Trail Information

Citrus Ranch Park
Nearby City
Peters Canyon Regional Park
Dog-friendly, Kid-friendly
Peters Canyon Regional Park, 8548 Canyon View Avenue, Orange 92869;(714) 973-6611 or (714) 973-6612;
Local Contacts
The Thomas Guide by Rand McNally—Street Guide: Los Angeles and Orange Counties (any recent year), page 830
Local Maps