If you feel like a nice easy hike close by, Buck Gully in Newport Beach is a very good choice. Just a few steps away from the beach in Orange County and in the middle of million-dollar homes, you can find this hidden oasis of lush wilderness and running water.
Some people complained that it is difficult to find, but with today’s GPS, just look for 5th and Poppy intersection and you will be right at the trailhead.
Tip: The trail is bordered with poison oak. It is recommended to wear long pants.
The trail is mostly level with a few inclines here and there – nothing too difficult – and about 5.5 miles for a roundtrip.
The trail is narrow and shared by bikers and hikers. The bikers are very careful and considerate.
Tip: There is no separate parking for the trailhead. You will have to park on the streets close-by.
This gully is full of birds, butterflies, frogs and lizards. Pause for a while, listen and watch the wildlife around you.
During a recent visit, we saw two adult birds crossing the trail and about 12 chicks following them around.
If you would like to know more about flora and fauna of Buck Gully you can join a ranger-led hike – it is free. To find the next hike and register, go here.
You can also help protect and restore Buck Gully by volunteering your time. Visit the Conservancy here.
Tip: Always bring lots of water, especially during warm weather.
You can find a good map of Buck Gully trails here.
The only drawback to this hike is that you will have to double back on the same trail to reach your starting point.