This week we took a hike on the Upper Newport Bay Nature Preserve trail. Iris and her dog Colbalt joined us again and were a welcome addition to the hike. This has probably been the least strenuous hike that we have reviewed so far. The terrain is flat and there are no major hills to climb so if you are looking for a quick and easy hike this is one to try.
It is right on the corner of University Drive and Irvine Ave. There is a parking lot that is open during the day which usually has parking spaces available If they are all taken there are still plenty of spots to park on the street.
The hike has two major trails, the upper trail and lower trail. The upper trail is the easiest of the two and follows the cliffs of the bay. The path is wide and there is plenty of room for you and your dog. You will also get some good views of the bay along the trail. During this time of the year there are plenty of flowers and other small animals to keep the hike entertaining. Sierra, our dog, was particularly interested in the lizards 🙂
If you are feeling a little more adventurous, the lower trail is for you. This trail is narrower, can be muddy, and at times, may require some bush waking to get through. However, this route does provide a little more privacy and less noise from daily traffic. If you are interest in bird watching, the lower trail will also be a better option because it’s closer to the water.
During this hike, we chose to take the lower trail on the way out and the upper trail on the way back. This allowed us to experience both options on the same hike. It was a 3.5 mile loop and only took a little over an hour to complete. We did stop to do some off trail exploring during the bottom portion of the loop, which was fun if you do have some extra time, and don’t mind getting a little dirty. A quick word of caution, after a rain, the bottom trail will be very muddy so make sure you wear cloths and shoes you don’t mind getting dirty. Also, make sure you keep your dog on a short leash on the bottom trail because there are plenty of cacti that you don’t want you or your dog falling into. Overall, this is a great hike and is even better if you take your best friend. There will be plenty for both of you to see and sniff 🙂 We look forward to our next hike in two weeks!