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staarkhand

Rincon Red Box rd vs Gabrielino

Hi all, I am looking for opinions on a way to go from the Kenyon-Devore trail over to Red Box.  I've never been on the Rincon Red Box road so I'm not sure how it compares to the Gabrielino trail in terms of scenery, ease of use, and freedom from nasty flora.

Also my experience on this section of the Gabrielino is about a year old and limited to the section between Red Box and the Valley Forge trail.  I tried to search these forums and quickly found descriptions of the Gabrielino trail for the section over to Valley Forge CG as "great" and also "really bad", and I think those reports are well past their useful halflife.  Anyone been on it recently?

I will be trying to 'move efficiently' (sometimes called running, but San Gabes) through a pretty long loop for which this is the middle section, so I have a slight preference for better footing, etc, but I'm also not afraid of less than pristine trails or willing to sacrifice the outdoor experience for ease of use.  But I know some of these roads are nice, and I'd like to see it sometime if it isn't too bad.
briangroh

Rincon Road Valley Forge to Red Box - Good.

I've been on this road several times and just again last year.

I've never seen much change in the road condition over the years, so I assume it's the same.

The condition has always been excellent for hiking, if not a little boring. Valley Forge up toward RED BOX is completely exposed and not much to look at. You can hear the cars above on the 2 so it's not much of a wilderness experience.

But after Valley Forge going down toward West Fork is woodsy and fantastic.

On foot, I usually bail off the road and choose the trail which meanders through the dry stream bed and is not well marked. At times I wasn't even sure if I was on the trail and then I would find it again.

So, if you want to keep your pace up, stick to the road.
staarkhand

Thanks.  I was willing to assume the road conditions were good, with the Gabrielino trail conditions being variable.  I had expected the road to be the more boring route, as you indicated, and would pick the trail if it's in decent shape.
Sean

Don't forget about differences in distance. The Kenyon Devore-Gabrieleno junction is nearly three-quarters of a mile above the fire road. And to get to the road you go in the opposite direction from Red Box. You won't be moving efficiently taking that detour. But if you really, really want to see a fire road, I guess it's nice enough.

Consider crossing over at Valley Forge, if you absolutely need a fix of the Red Box road. The road wiggles around a little more than the trail, I think. But your speed will be better.
staarkhand

Moving efficiently is a euphemism for trying to run, and then actually walking when it's hard because I'm not an elite athlete.  I'm aware of the distances and am not necessarily looking for the most efficient route from a distance point of view.  Spending time out there is the point.

I just thought I'd ask if people had strong reactions to either of those trails like, ick, skip it, or wow lots of PDB, etc.

Thanks for the thoughts.
Sean

OK, so my only strong reaction is to the bugs, which might be an argument for taking the road. I've had some pretty awful experiences with the flies over there.
staarkhand

Thanks a lot.

I'm seeing conflicting information about whether water is available at red box.  Since I have only ever used it as a start/end point I've never worried about it before.  Can anyone clear this up?
HikeUp

staarkhand wrote:
Thanks a lot.

I'm seeing conflicting information about whether water is available at red box.  Since I have only ever used it as a start/end point I've never worried about it before.  Can anyone clear this up?


Last time I was at Redbox (4 or 5 years ago!!!) there was a water fountain on the south side of the west parking lot next to the building that is there. It worked then. How's that for timely info - only 4 or 5 years old!
staarkhand

Ha, yeah, I've actually seen that fountain myself but never used it.  What's throwing me off is the forest service site saying there's no water:

http://www.fs.usda.gov/recarea/an...ecarea/?recid=41980&actid=118

I was afraid it might be seasonal or just not working and would hate to discover that I'd have to get back to the Alpine Tavern before finding water.
Sean

It's been two or three months, but the spigot at the base of the old fountain was still working. If you're there when the cultural center is open you can purchase bottled fluids from the gift shop.
staarkhand

Thank you!  

I will probably be doing this tomorrow and I believe the cultural center is open weekends only.
Sean

staarkhand wrote:
What's throwing me off is the forest service site saying there's no water


It might be that the spigot is actually across the street from the FS Picnic Area. So it's not considered a water supply at the picnic site. It's in the parking area for the cultural center and Gabrieleno Trail to Switzer's.
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