Hike of the Week: Palo Comado/Chesebro Canyon/Shepards’ Flat Loop

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I am renaming this loop because I can’t exactly figure out what its true name is. Maybe it doesn’t have a name. This is how we approached it. (Again, I just follow Deb, but I am fondly recalling the hike via my memory and the photos I took of this gorgeous spot.) Here is where David of Nobody Hikes in LA, my hiking spirit animal, describes the approach from the opposite direction.

On a gorgeous Friday morning, we parked near the trailhead at Doubletree and Sunnycrest in Oak Park (take a right on Sunnycrest if you’re going north on Kanan). That trail leads you to Palo Comado Canyon fire road, and you can only go left or right.

We turned right and headed quickly left up the very steep fire road which takes you to Chesebro Canyon trail, through a wooded area and a non-smelly spot called Sulphur Springs. The terrain along this trail changes from rolling meadow, to oak covered creekside, to rocky desert. It’s breathtaking.

IMG_7535I was expecting to see characters from The Princess Bride pop out.

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IMG_7548It’s really not that steep. We figured that this sign is for bikers so they don’t bite it on that little drop-off ahead.

IMG_7556During the zombie apocalypse you can find me hiding up here.

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You have to watch your back though because this area is very popular with mountain bikers and trail runners. We saw a few women out that day but mostly it was good looking men. So, if you’re a single woman, this is may be a good spot to fake an injury and pick up an active guy. Or vice versa, of course. I’d hate to be thought of as sexist…

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Anyway, this trek takes you up to another crossroads at Shepards’ Flat. We took the Sheep Corral Trail to the west and turned south on Dead Cow Trail, which is a smaller trail that hugs a high ridge and meets up with Palo Comado Canyon fire road, which we took all the way back down to where we started.

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IMG_7581Dead Cow Trail

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IMG_7586That hill in the background was the first climb we tackled at the beginning of this hike.

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The loop, Deb calculated, was just about 7.5 miles long. The steep ascent at the very beginning made my legs work pretty hard, so I was sore for a few days. It took us about 4 hours, and we weren’t going very fast. Just enjoying the morning, and a well-deserved lunch after that.

Weekend Activity: Mountain Biking at Chesebro Canyon

This is a cool video from Mountain Bike Community showing the trails at our own Chesebro Canyon. Great, smooth camera work. I wish I could get the health benefits of mountain biking just by watching this.

(Do you say “Cheese-boro” or “Chez-boro?” Or even “Chez-bro?” I still can’t figure that one out.)