Although pretty well known to local Irvine residents, the Irvine Loop has not yet taken the designation of known trail system like the Fullerton Loop in Fullerton, California. The Irvine Loop trail system is a combination of marked bike paths that run along roads and through parks and unmarked dirt paths that wind through the Shady Canyon and Turtle Rock neighborhoods of Irvine, California. A mountain bike is recommended for all of the off-road sections of this loop. Beginners should have no problem riding all but the steepest sections of the route, which at times can be as much as a 20% grade. Even the most advanced riders may have to push their bike up some sections of the loop! Most of the trail system can be ridden at night as well, making this one of the few places within Orange County’s borders to legally ride at night. You can jump on the loop at any point throughout the trail system, but here are a few recommended starting points:
Permit / Fee Parking*
Mason Regional Park 18712 University Drive, Irvine, CA
* NOTE: Check with the park websites above for current operating hours and fees.
Night Time Restrictions
The following areas are known to be closed at night:
- Mason Regional Park – After 9PM in the summer and after dusk all other times.
- Shady Canyon – A small section of the Shady Canyon trail between Sagecreek and Sunnyhill where is passes through a nature reserve area is “supposedly” closed after dark. However, the City of Irvine owns that trail, and “supposedly” does not enforce what the signs say. Use it at your own risk.
- The Bommer Meadows / Turtle Ridge areas are open 7AM-7PM (or dark).
Photos of the Irvine Loop
Here are a few different ways to ride the loop.