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Wood Canyon Cave Tour

Intermediate
 4.3 (3) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

A mellow out-and-back hike with some interesting stops.


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Map Key

6.0

Miles

9.6

KM

Loop

210' 64 m

High

100' 30 m

Low

239' 73 m

Up

239' 73 m

Down

2%

Avg Grade (1°)

28%

Max Grade (16°)

Dogs No Dogs

Features Birding · Cave · River/Creek · Views · Wildlife

Family Friendly Easy grades, and cool rocks; what more could you ask for?

Dogs are only allowed on SOME trails in the park.

Trails may close for three days after rain.

Overview

If interesting rocks are your thing, then this hike is for you. A 6-mile out-and-back hike that leads to some interesting caves and an old corral.

Need to Know

The park is open from 7 am to sunset (the parking lot closes at sunset).
Parking fees are $3 per vehicle daily. Other rates or discounts may apply; contact the park for more information.

Description

To start the hike, head west from the park office on Aliso Creek Trail; this trail parallels the road and Aliso Creek. At 1.5 miles, turn right onto Wood Canyon Trail, a dirt road. At 1.7 miles, take a left onto a side trail that leads to Cave Rock; here you'll find several wind-sculpted sandstone rock formations and caves.

The trail rejoins Wood Canyon Trail at about two miles. Continue north on Wood Canyon Trail to the intersection with Dripping Cave Trail; take a left and navigate to Dripping Cave, named for the year-round water seeping above and into the cave. It is also known as Robbers Cave, where supposedly, stagecoach robbers and cattle rustlers hid out in the 19th century.

Backtrack on Dripping Cave Trail to Wood Canyon Trail and take a left to continue north. Once you reach, and have enjoyed the view of, the Old Corral turn around and follow Wood Canyon Trail all the way back to Aliso Creek Trail. At the junction, take a left onto Aliso Creek Trail to head east back to the trailhead.

Most of these trails are multi-use, therefore be sure to know the right-of-way rules and be aware of other users.

Thanks to John McKinney, The Trailmaster, for sharing this trail description. To learn more about trails in California, check out his guides at The Trailmaster Store.

Flora & Fauna

Aliso and Wood Canyon Wilderness Park was originally part of the Juaneno or Acajchemem tribal land. Ownership then transferred between several individuals and companies before falling to Orange County Parks.

History & Background

The park is designated as a wildlife sanctuary; there are many rare and endangered plants and animals in the park.

Contacts

Shared By:

John McKinney

Trail Ratings

  4.3 from 3 votes

#2764

Overall
  4.3 from 3 votes
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Recommended Route Rankings

#408

in California

#2,764

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1,672 Since Aug 3, 2017
Intermediate

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Photos

My Path
Aug 3, 2017 near Aliso V…, CA
Beautiful day
Aug 3, 2017 near Aliso V…, CA
Waterfall on wood canyon trail.
Jan 22, 2018 near Aliso V…, CA
Bird silhouette.
Aug 3, 2017 near Aliso V…, CA

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Check-Ins

Jul 7, 2019
Deanna Mendelsohn
Jul 6, 2019
Elissa Title
4.3mi
Feb 26, 2018
Tyler Ubl
Caves are fun lots of fun rock climbing you can do on this hike 6mi
Sep 14, 2017
Moses Chooks

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