Vail Lake Resort is considered a top mountain biking destination, and with several endurance races throughout the year, we can understand why! Vail Lake is located in the beautiful city of Temecula, and it offers over 8000 acres incredible biking and hiking terrain. It is a family friendly resort with plenty of activities such as camping, swimming, hiking, miniature gold, horseshoe pits, and even basketball courts. And if you are over 21 and like wine after a good ride, there are over 30 wineries in the Temecula Valley!
The resort offers a trail map, where you will see that there are 24 trails to choose from when riding or hiking. Many of them intertwine with one another, but the main artery of this park is Ambulance trail, which is a nice, fire road climb to the summit. The views from up there are incredible, with scenic mountain landscapes and the lake. There are plenty of single-tracks to descend as well. Although the trail map that the park provides has trails by name, you will not see trail markers as you are traversing this park. It is not difficult to navigate through if you stay in the general direction of the lake. Mostly sun exposure so, ride early and watch out for the snakes
Entry fee : $5 per person
Distance: 7.43 mi
Avg Speed: 4.5 mph
Elevation Gain: 1,299 ft
Calories: 592 C
From the 15 frwy, Take the CA-79 S exit, EXIT 58, toward Indio, (East), about 11 miles on your left you will see the entrance.
(hover over steps for images – some steps may not have images)
After paying and entering the park, drive straight ahead to the parking lot to your left. The entrance to the trails lies directly in front of you, and there is a sign that directs you to the trails. This is where you will enter to begin your loop. The trail starts off as a single-track with a slight elevation gain. You will notice trails to the left and right, but continue straight and descend to the fire road.
.52- Head right at bottom and then a quick left to begin climbing Ambulance trail. It is the fire road on your left and you will notice how it goes up.
1.88- You will reach a point where Ambulance trail goes either left or right at this summit. You will enjoy beautiful views of the city of Temecula to your left. The lake is to the right. Obviously, you want to head right.
3.78- As I mentioned before, there are plenty of trails on the side to ascend/descend, which is what we chose to do on this loop. Had we stayed on Ambulance, we would have arrived there in approximately 3 miles from the parking lot. There is a water tower at this summit and the views from here are incredible. You can shoot straight down to the lake from here, or take the killer single-track descent a few yards down on your right as you begin making your way down the trail. This is the option we prefer. The trail is fun and has a couple of rocky, semi technical descents, but nothing crazy.
5.00- You reached the bottom of the trail which becomes a gravel road. Head left towards the lake, which you will arrive to in approximately ½ mile. Otherwise, go right and make your way back to the parking lot. There are plenty of trails to ride as you make your way back, including a section that resembles a BMX park. It’s a great place to practice your jumps.
7.60- back to the parking lot.