One thing is for certain: Steep Canyon lives up to its name. Long staircases, intense hills…this 2.1-mile loop trail packs a punch! But the best part? The incredible views from the top. At the summit, you and your four-legged friend will be rewarded with unobstructed 360-degree views from Mount Wilson to downtown Los Angeles and everything in between.
The trailhead is just minutes from the Pomona Freeway (CA-60) in Diamond Bar, making it perfect for these short winter days. The scent of wild sage fills the air as you trek up and down the rolling hills with your furry friend. In addition to the panoramic views, the two of you can check out stately oak and sycamore trees intermixed with cactus and wildflowers. The trail is well maintained and easy to follow, with five separate entry and exit points along the loop. Check the map at the trailhead before heading up, though, because trail forks are unmarked. Be sure to keep following the counterclockwise loop so you don’t accidentally exit the trail early.
Want to up the intensity of your workout? Add on the Canyon Route Loop, bumping up the total distance to 3.1 miles. While the exposed trails might be rough for furry adventure buddies during the heat of summer, dogs in decent shape will have no problem navigating the steep slopes on cooler days. And if one of you starts feeling a little winded after any of the particularly fierce hills, you’ll find plenty of benches where you can stop and take in the views together, or maybe read one of the cool informational plaques to learn something new about SoCal (LA was founded in 1781!). There’s nothing like pausing to enjoy the moment with your best friend.
Exit CA-60 at Diamond Bar Blvd. and head south. Turn left on Steep Canyon Rd. and follow it to the top of the hill. The trailhead is on the left. Park along the residential streets, being courteous and respectful of residents and their property. The trail is open a half-hour before sunrise and closes a half-hour after sunset. Dog-friendly!