Pets allowed
Not Allowed
Elevation Gain
1,475.00 ft (449.58 m)
Trail type
There-and-back
Distance
6.00 mi (9.66 km)
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

The La Vida Trail is a quiet path that will take you from the more popular trails of Chino Hills State Park and climb to panoramic views of the surrounding landscape.

Beginning in the village of Olinda along Carbon Canyon Road, the trail is named after an old jeep road that has since faded into a single track that climbs, falls, and then climbs again into the hilly interior of Sonome Canyon. While an older version of the trail followed the La Vida Road jeep path back down to Carbon Canyon Road near the site of a mineral springs resort and roadhouse that once lined this quiet highway, those establishments have faded into a barely-visible turnout that is as overgrown as that jeep road is today. 

Instead, where the trail once crossed Tank Road, a paved street leading to two water tanks perched high atop the hills, the flat peak around those tanks provide an excellent vista point and a natural endpoint for this hike. Climbing a little over 400 feet, then dropping again, before climbing another 500 feet to the peak, the only flat portion of this hike is the ground surrounding the water tanks at the end of the out-and-back.

The stone peaks of Mt. Baldy and the San Gabriel Mountains stretching across the northern horizon, and facing south, with the highway hidden away in the folds of the landscape and the lengthy hills of the state park hiding the urban grid beyond it, it's easily possible to look around and envision how north Orange County looked before development blanketed it. 

A network of former trails, all now mostly overgrown single tracks, continues northeast from the lookout point if you'd like to really dive into the wild fringes of the park. Otherwise, turn around and retrace your path back to the trailhead.

It's also possible to follow Tank Road back down into Olinda and create a loop, however this will require walking through the village to arrive back at the trailhead.

Be aware of possible hazards such as rattlesnakes, scorpions, poison oak, and stinging grass along the trail. There is very little shade and no water, nor are there any amenities at the trailhead. Dogs are not allowed on park trails.

The Chino Hills State Park Discovery Center, located 1.6 miles to the west has information on the park and rangers who are eager to answer questions about the area.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)

Spring
Fall
Winter

Congestion

Low

Parking Pass

None

Open Year-round

Yes

Pros

Panoramic views.

Cons

No shade. No amenities available.

Trailhead Elevation

880.00 ft (268.22 m)

Highest point

1,375.00 ft (419.10 m)

Features

Big vistas

Typically multi-day

No

Suitable for

Biking
Horseback

Permit required

No

Location

Nearby Lodging + Camping

San Gabriel + San Bernardino Mountains, California
Angeles National Forest, San Gabriel Mountains

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