ATV Riding near Los Angeles is a favorite activity of many residing in Southern California. It is no longer only a hobby of those seeking adventure, as more and more families have started participating in these fun rides. Why, you may ask – for some it’s the fun of getting dirty in the mud. And for others, it may be about exploring new terrain but for all, it is about the adrenaline.
Why should you go ATV Riding in Los Angeles?
The County and nearby areas provide trails and spots for all kinds of ATV enthusiasts. Whether you are an adrenaline junkie or recently finished college and want to have fun with friends, you will find exactly what you want here. There are innumerable businesses in the area offering services for off-roading of all types which make the experience hassle-free and smooth. Furthermore, the County of Los Angeles has created specific Off-Highway Vehicles or OHV Parks and trails. This allows for minimum damage to private property and the environment without compromising on the adrenaline rush.
When and where ATV Riding can you go ATV Riding by Los Angeles?
Season is not a hindrance when you are in LA. You may get lucky with a few rain spells as it will only add to the adventure. Most of the off-roading spots are open for riders throughout the week. Some are open from dusk to dawn as well.
15 Spots near LA for ATV Riding in Los Angeles:
- Azusa Canyon
- Holcomb Creek
- Lake Hughes Truck Trail
- Del Sur Ridge
- Berdoo Canyon
- Gold Fever Trail
- Sierra Pelona
- Brooklyn Mine
- Rattlesnake Canyon RC3331 – Johnson valley
- Big Bear Lake
- Miller Jeep Trail – San Pedro
- Liebre Mountain
- Hungy Valley SVRA
1. Azusa Canyon
Situated 11 miles (17.7 km) away from the Azusa Highway, this recreational park is a must-visit if you want to explore a mix of rock, river and sand. This designated Off-highway vehicle area is spread across 160 acres and comes with all facilities such as restrooms and even a food area. They also boast of a special obstacle course which is a favorite among enthusiasts. However, the course and the OHV are open only on holidays and weekends and it is always advisable to check if they are open before making plans. There is also an entry fee that visitors are required to pay at the time of entry which goes into maintaining the diverse terrain for the ultimate off-roading challenge. Usually, the trail is open throughout the year but unannounced closures for maintenance happen once in a while.
2. Wildomar OHV
Based within the boundaries of Cleveland national forest, the Wildomar OHV staging area is 360 acres and has an 8-mile-long trail. You can go with your ATV, quads or even bikes as the difficulty level varies from easy to difficult. As the trail is quite near to Lake Elsinore, it is one of the most scenic routes for off-roading. They also have a separate area for young riders and beginners to get started on their mud trails. You can camp overnight at the camping area and hit the trails as part of a family activity. Amenities like restrooms and water are provided at the trailhead whereas the camping grounds have all standard facilities. Though the park is open throughout the year, riding on the trails is recommended during winters.
3. Holcomb Creek OHV
Considered to be the Black Diamond trail in the Big Bear area, Holcomb Creek can give even the advance riders a tough time. The challenge is not one particular turn or patch but the entire trail as full of big boulder gardens. It also has many steep climbs and water crossings. The trail is approximately 5.5 miles (8.85 km) long and is maintained by ‘My Jeep Rocks’ Jeep Club. They have done a great job in maintaining the trail and also ensuring that it lives up to its name of being one the most difficult trails in the area. The best time to visit this trail is through spring and fall. In case you are looking for out-of-ordinary difficulty then you can venture there in winter as well.
4. Lake Hughes Truck Trail
This 19 miles (30.58 km) long trail is perfect for ATV riders who want to enjoy the beautiful scenery and take a few pictures while cruising through. Rated as moderate to easy, it is light on traffic on most days and gives enough space for newbies to feel their vehicles and learn a few things on the go. There are few uphill climbs in the mix to break the monotony of the terrain but other than that the route is smooth. This trail does not have any campgrounds adjoining it so riders must be prepared accordingly.
5. Del Sur Ridge
A typical beginner-level trail, this one offers plenty of scenic beauty and a relaxed ride for ATVs and all other OHVs. A large part of the trail is a dirt road, therefore, attracting a lot of dirt bikers. There are some large rocks and steep trails if you venture out to the offshoots. But if you remain on the main road it’s a smooth sail pretty much till the end. The trail itself is only 7 miles (11.27 km) long and there are no facilities for water or shade.
6. Berdoo Canyon
This trail runs through the beautiful Berdoo Canyon in Little San Bernardino Mountains. It is an old, unmaintained road with a history of a deserted town. It connects the south end of Geology Tour road with Dillod Road by taking you towards the Mountains and ascending into the Berdoo Canyon. The terrain is mostly that of desert plain so you can enjoy the desert view while on your AVT. The trail itself is not very difficult but can be tricky in some parts due to narrow paths. Do check with the visitor center for the latest updates of weather as it is prone to flash flooding in the rains
7. Gold Fever OHV Trail
Known for the scenic beauty throughout the area, this one is of moderate difficulty level. The trail is 11.4 miles (18.35 km) long and has a rocky terrain. It is advised that to travel this road, it's best suited to have a 4WD vehicle with high ground clearance. A car like a sedan will certainly get bruised as the trail has deep mud pits as deep as 1ft (30.48 cm). In addition to that, the trail also has extremely rocky patches. The trail is accessible throughout the year and is a self-guided tour of the Holcomb Valley area.
8. Sierra Pelona OHV Road
Rated as an easy trail, Sierra Pelona is located near Santa Clarita. The trail is a rugged backcountry road and is assessable throughout the year. The trail area offers terrains for off-road motorcycling, OHV drives and minor rock crawling as well. It has a fantastic scenic view of the Bouquet Reservoir. This trail also has steep climbs which take the trail to a height of 4800ft (ca. 1,463 m). The overall time taken to finish the 15-mile trail is about 3 hours. The best time to visit is between Jan and December and gets hot during summer.
9. Brooklyn Mine OHV Trail
The trail is located on the outskirts of the Joshua National Park. It is easy to traverse but certainly needs a high-rise vehicle. It offers a terrain that is rocky in nature and has large boulders which need to be climbed to continue the journey. The final point of the trail ends in a vacated old mining community. The area is of historical importance and has many of the old structures still intact. This trail is very popular among camping enthusiasts as it offers remote and unique camping locations. It is approximately 10miles (16.09 km) long and has light traffic throughout the year.
10. Rowher Trail
The Rowher Trail is among the difficult terrain to conquer. Its open to Motorcycles, ATV and 4-wheel drives throughout the year. The final part of the trail leading to the Bouquet Reservoir is steep and requires previous experience of off-roading. A 4WD comes highly recommended for this trail given the uneven terrain and sudden steep slopes. It also offers an alternate route on the way back which is far easier than the trail leading to the reservoir. Recently, there were upgrades made to the staging area. As a result, it now offers loading ramps, toilets, picnic tables and a large parking space. To access this 14 miles (22.53 km) difficult trail, an adventure pass is required to be procured beforehand.
11. Rattlesnake Canyon Trail
Located in the Mojave Desert of California, the trail offers a diverse terrain. The 27.5 miles (44.26 km) long trail passes through private lakes, sand valleys, rocky roads and gives a chance to encounter wildlife. The trail is rated moderate in difficulty and has private guided tours as well. This trail ends in the old Joshua Tree forest and is best visited between March and November.
12. Big Bear Lake
This 12-mile trail has the Big Bear Lake in its backdrop. The trail is considered to be difficult particularly due to a V rock drop in the middle of the route. The trail is extremely popular for off-roading due to the commercial growth around the Big Bear. As a result, the trail experiences some heavy traffic. The trail offers a terrain mixed with rocky roads, mud and water in addition to deep rock drops. It is strongly recommended that a 4WD is used for this trail The scenic views of Big Bear allow for some great camping sites and nature photography. The recommended time of visit is between March-October
13. Miller Jeep Trail – San Pedro
Part of the Los Pedres National Forest, Miller OHV / Lockwood trail is among the oldest and most difficult trails. The trail will require you to gear up your vehicle quite a bit as there are some rocky inclines along the way that need big tires, lockers and lift with gears. There are some spots where you would need high clearance and a spotter. This trail is not one for novices but will not disappoint serious and experienced riders. An addition to the adventure, this trail offers a scenic view and is recommended to visit from May till November. For those of you interested, at the Aloma Mountain is the Dutchman campground if you want to enjoy the evening post a crazy fun ride.
14. Liebre Mountain
Situated in the mountain, this trail starts at Quail Lake and ends at Lake Hughes Road. The 21miles (33.8 km) route is categorized as a difficult trail given its length and the winding trail. The best time to experience this route is between April and December. Originally, as the initial part of the trail, Old Ridge route was a paved road with concrete. But with time and wearing down of the road, the current condition of the trail is a dusty, broken concrete road. This makes the trail more rugged and fun off-roading.
The trail goes up to Sandberg Mountain which is known to have a thick cover of Oak trees. The trail also gives a variety of optional sidetracks to go down from, all of which end with a fantastic scenic view. For a better and equipped camping location, heading to the Bear and Sawmill national forest campgrounds is highly recommended.
15. Hungry Valley SVRA
Located in the northern part of Los Angeles County, the Hungry Valley State Vehicular Recreation Area is the second-largest OHV recreation area in California. Due to the topographical outlay, the area is ideally placed to become the most diverse off-roading spot. Spread across 19000 acres of rugged terrain, it offers over 130 miles (209.21 km) of trails for all levels and vehicle types. Experienced riders can explore the back-country section of the SVRA. The best time to visit is during the spring and fall months.
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