San Dimas Community Post Trail Guide

San Dimas has a number of local trails and hiking paths that provide opportunities for everyone to get outside and enjoy the great outdoors. Artwork and photos: Phil Ebiner

By Phil Ebiner

San Dimas is home to many hiking trails, perfect for a quick escape to nature. Our local trails range from easy and family-friendly to hard and strenuous, providing opportunities for everyone to get outside and enjoy the great outdoors.

What makes San Dimas a great hiking town? A lot has to do with our location. San Dimas is situated in the San Gabriel Valley, between the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains and the rolling San Jose Hills, where Puddingstone Reservoir sits. Thanks to the city’s historical preservation of these areas, the landscape is prime for recreational uses like hiking, cycling and horseback riding.

We have put together a list of seven local trails and paths with directions, parking details and difficulty level.

Walnut Creek/Antonovich Trail

Trail Difficulty: Easy to Moderate

Uses: Hiking, Horseback Riding, Dogs Allowed on Leash

The Antonovich trail in Walnut Creek Regional Park is a popular trail with several stream crossings and lots of shady trees, making it a great year-round escape. The San Dimas portion of the trail stretches from San Dimas Avenue to Reeder Avenue.

This trail has several options to make it as easy or difficult as you want. When starting from the San Dimas Avenue parking lot, there is a relatively quick descent into the canyon. For an easier hike, start at the bottom of the valley at the Valley Center Staging Area. From there you can head in either direction for a relatively flat walk. Be careful when hiking after a heavy rain as the stream crossings can get quite deep.

Parking & Directions: There are three parking lots from which to start the hike. The first is on San Dimas Avenue just north of Avenida Loma Vista. The second is at the Valley Center Staging Area accessed at the southern end of Valley Center Avenue. The third is at the Lyman Staging Area. Lastly, there is an entrance to the trail on Reeder Avenue. Parking is free at all locations.

Horsethief Canyon Park

Trail Difficulty: Moderate

Uses: Hiking, Horseback Riding, Dogs Allowed on Leash

Abutting the foothills on the north side of town is Horsethief Canyon Park, which is the starting point for several trails including Sycamore Canyon Trail and Poison Oak Trail. To get to the trails, just head north from the parking lot, past the dog park and playground. 

The trail initially runs along the bottom of the hills then splits with the option to go up into the hills, or to continue past the equestrian center and up along Sycamore Canyon Road. The former route is great if you are looking for a workout with a somewhat intense incline for the first three quarters of a mile.

Parking & Directions: Parking is available in the Horsethief Canyon Park parking lot. To get to the park, head north on San Dimas Canyon Road. The park is north of Foothill Boulevard. Make a left on Sycamore Canyon Road and then another quick left onto Horsethief Canyon Park Road. 

Bonelli Regional Park

Trail Difficulty: Easy to Moderate

Uses: Hiking, Horseback Riding, Mountain Biking, Dogs Allowed on Leash

With 1,800 acres and over 14 miles of trails, Bonelli Park has a myriad of hiking opportunities for you. Out of all the trails on this list, Bonelli Park is the best for mountain biking. There are paved walking paths on both the north and south sides of the lake, perfect for a family-friendly walk or bike ride. For a longer adventure, you can walk the approximately 7-mile perimeter of the lake via a combination of trails, walking paths and roads. 

Check out the Lake View and Tree Line trails for beautiful views of Puddingstone Reservoir with the foothills in the distance. 

Parking & Directions: There are several free and paid parking options at Bonelli Park. The main entrance on Via Verde Drive provides the easiest access to many trailheads. There is an entrance fee on weekends, holidays and daily between May 1 and Sept. 30. There is also an entrance with parking on the north side of the lake on Puddingstone Drive. 

Lastly there are two places to park that are free year round. The first is the Via Verde Park & Ride. From the parking lot, head east on Via Verde Drive to the main entrance. The second is at a parking lot near Norm’s Hangar Restaurant. From the parking lot, head west on the emergency access road, which leads to several trail options.

San Dimas Canyon Park

Trail Difficulty: Easy

Uses: Hiking, Dogs Allowed on Leash

Just above San Dimas Canyon Park is a lightly used loop trail great for the whole family. The trail starts on the eastern side of the park with a gentle climb that turns into a loop in open space at the base of the foothills. There is little shade beyond the actual park, so make sure to pack a hat and sunscreen. 

Parking & Directions: Parking is available in the San Dimas Canyon Park parking lot. To get to the park, head north on San Dimas Canyon Road. The park is north of Foothill Boulevard.

Bonus: San Dimas Walking Paths

In addition to great hiking, San Dimas has several looped walking paths that make for an easy walk for all ages. 

Via Verde Park

On the periphery of Via Verde Park is a 0.4-mile walking path.

Civic Center Park

Surrounding Civic Center Park is a recently paved sidewalk that is approximately 0.25 miles.

Horsethief Canyon Park

On the east side of Horsethief Canyon Park is a 0.2-mile walking path.

With this information, go head outdoors and enjoy our beautiful city. Let us know what your favorite hikes are and if we missed any. 

Disclaimer: This guide was created for informational purposes only. Reasonable effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the locations, images and other information provided; nevertheless, some information may not be accurate. Additional information can be found through the San Dimas Parks and Recreation Department. Bonelli Regional Park and the Walnut Creek Regional Park/Antonovich Trail are maintained by the County of Los Angeles. 

Our Rating System: Trails marked “easy” are generally family-friendly and good for beginner hikers. Trails marked “moderate” are good for those with hiking experience and people looking for a workout. Trails marked “easy to moderate” have options for both levels.

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