The Claremont Wilderness Trail is a rugged earthy escape that is easy for locals to find.
“Around here it’s one of the better hikes that you can find,” said Gabriela Krupa, a freshman political science major, who was hiking the rugged trail recently despite the humid weather.
“I always enjoy going because I like the little bit of peace that hiking provides you with,”
The Claremont loop, as it has lovingly been called, is a five-mile hiking trail in the hills of Claremont. The trail is paved with dirt roads and dotted with scenic foliage that provide momentary relief from the sun.
Many local hikers brave the heat of summer and walk the trail either by themselves or with friends.
“Families love it because it always feels so safe here,” Krupa said.
Though many are drawn to the Wilderness Trail, the reasons for coming to the site are as varied as its visitors.
“I’ve seen a lot of parents go with their kids for their own sort of outing and it’s hard to find a trail as bike-friendly as the Claremont Loop, so I know it attracts a lot of bikers,” Krupa said. “I personally go because I like that you can really feel the work out as you’re walking.”
“I like that the trail is about as intense as you want it to be,” junior criminology major Miguel Garcia said.
“You can just sort of relax and take in the nature, but if you want to run it, you’re definitely not going to make it to the end very easily.”
“For me, I like going to the loop if I want to take a breather from reality,” La Verne graduate student Mauricio Medrano said. “I like that sense of escape.”
One of the most notable parts of the trail comes around dusk when many tarantulas come from their nests and can be seen meadering along the trail.
“I love seeing the tarantulas,” Krupa said. “It freaks a lot of people out, but to me it’s just another part of getting in touch with nature. If they weren’t there, I don’t think the trail would feel as authentic.”
“I think the tarantulas make the trail, honestly,” Medrano said.
Though the tarantulas are most notable for showing up at dusk, there are several more examples of wildlife on the Claremont Loop, including rattlesnakes and deer.
“As long as you stick to the trail and check your feet you should be fine,” Medrano said.
Even if it does contain its fair share of mild wildlife, it’s not enough to keep hikers of all performance levels coming back to enjoy the Claremont Hills Wilderness Trail.
“There all these great views throughout the hike,” Krupa said. “Every few miles you get to another one. It motivates you to keep going because it’s all worth seeing.”
Julian Burrell can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.