100 Reasons to Be Ecstatic About Summer In OC!

Summer here is bliss, better than anyplace else in the States

61. NIGHT RIDING AT THE LUGE
Be forewarned that mountain biking in the Santiago wilderness carries inherent dangers, including encounters with vicious wild life, the miscalculation of trail size in relation to precipitous drop-offs, as well as the threat of dehydration. Of course, it's easiest to control the last of these perils by going on a night ride. And fewer trails in Orange County so perfectly offer you the combined thrill of isolation, connection with nature and glittering vistas as The Luge. Drive up to the base of the Santa Ana Mountains, hitch your gas guzzler to a post near Cook's Corner and make your way up Santiago Canyon Road. Steep asphalt streets give way to a dusty, rocky single track surrounded by sagebrush, yucca, California lilacs and buckwheat. Because of climate conditions, some wildflowers will still be present as late as July. Metropolises from Los Angeles to South County glitter below, while the massive, imposing silhouette of Santiago Peak lurks behind in the inky blackness. Planted at the top of the trail is a large American flag maintained by a few dedicated volunteers; this landmark signals the final stretch of the journey—a gnarly, downhill single track flanked by some steep cliffs. Of course, since it's at night, all you'll see is the encroaching darkness looming beyond the reach of your puny bike light.

62. HORSEBACK RIDING AT IRVINE REGIONAL PARK
If John Wayne remains our idol, then all of us must learn how to ride a horse. Don't know how to mount a steed, city slicker? Head over to Country Trails and Riding School at Irvine Regional Park, where a young-but-intuitive group of guides is ready to meet you at your skill level. There's a menagerie of well-behaved horses to take you through stands of oak trees surrounded by rolling hillsides. Go early enough in the summer, and you can trot through an idyllic meadow brimming with fennel, a component of black licorice and an alluring equine treat. For more info, visit ctriding.com.

63. THE BRUERY'S TRADE WINDS TRIPEL
The Bruery
has only been around for a couple of years, and there's a plug for it elsewhere in this issue, and there was that recent cover story—but still, we can't resist it. In the same vein as the Kogi BBQ truck, the Bruery's Trade Winds Tripel is a first-rate example of the wonders that happen when East meets West, with rice and Thai basil giving the Belgian-style brew a great twist. After the thick head settles, this summer-brewed ale serves as an addictively sippable ale and packs an 8 percent alcohol-per-volume punch. The Placentia-based brewery says this tripel is "made for a lazy summer evening," but we wish the brewmasters would add it to the year-round arsenal of fine craft beers. 715 Dunn Way, Placentia, (714) 996-6258; www.thebruery.com.

Star Foreman
Star Foreman

Location Info

Map

Orange County Fair & Exposition Center

88 Fair Drive
Costa Mesa, CA 92627

Category: Attractions and Amusement Parks

Region: Costa Mesa

Mo Ran Gak Restaurant

9651 Garden Grove Blvd.
Garden Grove, CA 92844

Category: Restaurant > Korean

Region: Garden Grove

Bowers Museum

2002 N. Main St.
Santa Ana, CA 92706

Category: Museums

Region: Santa Ana

Fullerton Farmers' Market

801 W. Valencia Drive
Fullerton, CA 92832

Category: Restaurant > Street Food

Region: Fullerton

Irvine Lake Cafe

4621 Santiago Canyon Road
Silverado, CA 92676

Category: Parks and Outdoors

Region: Silverado

Villa Romano Green Farms

200 Avenida La Pata
San Clemente, CA 92673

Category: Restaurant > Street Food

Region: San Clemente

Habitat for Humanity ReStore

12827 Harbor Blvd.
Garden Grove, CA 92840

Category: Retail

Region: Garden Grove

Habitat for Humanity ReStore

2200 S. Ritchey St.
Santa Ana, CA 92705

Category: Retail

Region: Santa Ana

Knott's Berry Farm

8039 Beach Blvd.
Buena Park, CA 90620

Category: Attractions and Amusement Parks

Region: Buena Park

Aliso Beach

31131 S. Pacific Coast Highway
Laguna Beach, CA 92652

Category: Parks and Outdoors

Region: Laguna Beach

Mutt Lynchs

2300 W. Oceanfront
Newport Beach, CA 92663

Category: Bars and Clubs

Region: Newport Beach

The Fisherman's Restaurant

611 Avenida Victoria
San Clemente, CA 92672

Category: Restaurant > American

Region: San Clemente

Costa Mesa Speedway

88 Fair Drive
Costa Mesa, CA 92626

Category: Sports and Recreation

Region: Costa Mesa

Mugs Away Saloon

27324 Camino Capistrano
Laguna Beach, CA 92677

Category: Music Venues

Region: Laguna Niguel

Anaheim Convention Center

800 W. Katella Ave.
Anaheim, CA 92802

Category: Services

Region: Anaheim

Fullerton Sports Complex

560 E. Silver Pine St.
Fullerton, CA 92835

Category: Sports and Recreation

Region: Fullerton

The Festival Amphitheatre

12762 Main St.
Garden Grove, CA 92840

Category: Performing Arts Venues

Region: Garden Grove

Ocean Institute, Dana Point

24200 Dana Point Harbor Drive
Dana Point, CA 92629

Category: Parks and Outdoors

Region: Dana Point

Angels Stadium Of Anaheim

2000 E. Gene Autry Way
Anaheim, CA 92805

Category: Music Venues

Region: Anaheim

Irvine Meadows Fairgrounds

8800 Irvine Center Drive
Irvine, CA 92618

Category: Parks and Outdoors

Region: Irvine

Art-A-Fair

777 Laguna Canyon Road
Laguna Beach, CA 92651

Category: Community Venues

Region: Laguna Beach

Laguna Beach Festival of Arts

650 Laguna Canyon Road
Laguna Beach, CA 92651

Category: Attractions and Amusement Parks

Region: Laguna Beach

Sawdust Art Festival

935 Laguna Canyon Road
Laguna Beach, CA 92651

Category: Attractions and Amusement Parks

Region: Laguna Beach

El Centro Lions Park

201 N. Cypress St.
La Habra, CA 90631

Category: Parks and Outdoors

Region: La Habra

Richard & Karen Carpenter Performing Arts Center

6200 Atherton St.
Long Beach, CA 90815

Category: Music Venues

Region: Long Beach

Captain Dave's Dolphin & Whale Safari

24440 Dana Point Harbor Drive Dana Point
Dana Point, CA 92629

Category: Attractions and Amusement Parks

Region: Dana Point

United States Sailing Center

5689 E. Ocean Blvd.
Long Beach, CA 90803

Category: Services

Region: Long Beach

Oaks Blenheim Riding Park

Via la Plata
San Juan Capistrano, CA 92675

Category: Attractions and Amusement Parks

Region: San Juan Capistrano

Pacific Marine Mammal Center

20612 Laguna Canyon Road
Laguna Beach, CA 92651

Category: Services

Region: Laguna Beach

320 Main

320 Main St.
Seal Beach, CA 90740

Category: Restaurant > American

Region: Seal Beach

Matador Cantina

111 N. Harbor Blvd.
Fullerton, CA 92832

Category: Bars and Clubs

Region: Fullerton

Pacific Amphitheatre

88 Fair Drive
Costa Mesa, CA 92626

Category: Music Venues

Region: Costa Mesa

AQUARIUM OF THE PACIFIC

100 Aquarium Way
Long Beach, CA 90802

Category: Attractions and Amusement Parks

Region: Long Beach

Dockside Boat & Bed

316 E. Shoreline Drive
Long Beach, CA 90802

Category: Hotels and Resorts

Region: Long Beach

Orange County Zoo

1 Irvine Park Road
Orange, CA 92869

Category: Parks and Outdoors

Region: Orange

Cook's Corner

19152 Santiago Canyon Rd
Coto De Caza, CA 92610

Category: Bars and Clubs

Region: Foothill Ranch

The Bruery

715 Dunn Way
Placentia, CA 92870

Category: Breweries and Wineries

Region: Placentia

Bolsa Chica Wetlands

Pacific Coast Highway and Warner
Huntington Beach, CA 92649

Category: Attractions and Amusement Parks

Region: Huntington Beach

Lantern Bay Park

25111 Park Lantern
Dana Point, CA 92629

Category: Parks and Outdoors

Region: Dana Point

Pearson Park

401 N. Lemon St.
Anaheim, CA 92805

Category: Parks and Outdoors

Region: Anaheim

Hi-Time Wine Cellars

250 Ogle St.
Costa Mesa, CA 92627

Category: Restaurant > Wine Bar

Region: Costa Mesa

Centennial Farms

88 Fair Drive
Costa Mesa, CA 92626

Category: Services

Region: Costa Mesa

Newport Cruisers

2233 W. Balboa Blvd.
Newport Beach, CA 92663

Category: Retail

Region: Newport Beach

Catholic Worker

316 Cypress Ave.
Santa Ana, CA 92701

Category: Services

Region: Santa Ana

Wild Rivers Waterpark

8770 Irvine Center Drive
Irvine, CA 92618

Category: Attractions and Amusement Parks

Region: Irvine

Doheny State Beach

25300 Dana Point Harbor Drive
Dana Point, CA 92629

Category: Parks and Outdoors

Region: Dana Point

The Rinks- Anaheim Ice

300 W. Lincoln Blvd.
Anaheim, CA 92805

Category: Sports and Recreation

Region: Anaheim

Oak Canyon Ranch

5305 Santiago Canyon Road
Silverado, CA 92676

Category: Attractions and Amusement Parks

Region: Orange

Creme Tangerine

2930 Bristol St., Kiosk 2
Costa Mesa, CA 92626

Category: Retail

Region: Costa Mesa

Las Brisas

361 Cliff Drive
Laguna Beach, CA 92651

Category: Restaurant > Mexican

Region: Laguna Beach

Tanaka Farms

5380 3/4 University Drive
Irvine, CA 92612

Category: Restaurant > Raw Food

Region: Irvine

Portfolio Coffee House

2300 Fourth St.
Long Beach, CA 90814

Category: Coffee Shops

Region: Long Beach

Art Theatre of Long Beach

2025 E. 4th St.
Long Beach, CA 90814

Category: Movie Theaters

Region: Long Beach

Details

Photography and post-production: Star Foreman
Hair and makeup: Autumn Sanders
Styling: Devon Nuzer
On-set stylist: Sunshine Harding
Models courtesy of Models International: Haley Bartlett, Thor Knai, Samantha Summers

SEE ALSO:


VIDEO: Click here to go behind the scenes of our cover photo shoot.


INFOGRAPHIC: Click here to see the last orange groves in Orange County.

64. GRUNION RUN
Oh, to be a grunion. First, the poor fish are subject to voyeuristic humans watching them have sex on the beach. As if the privacy invasion wasn't bad enough, the female totally gets the short end of the stick in the mating department; after she swims up to the shore and releases her eggs into the sand, the guy fish swims up and releases his milt all over her. And up to eight guy fish will do this before bailing back into the ocean: RUDE! After it's all over, people will catch them and eat them. If this sounds like something you'd like to see for yourself, mating season stretches from March to early August. It's an OC summer tradition as hallowed as Hootenany. The best beach varies each season, but Huntington and Doheny are two of the most popular locations. Check out www.dfa.ca.gov to see a list of expected dates for the grunion runs.

65. MEXICAN STREET FRUIT
The soundtrack to any park in the more-urban parts of OC (read: Anaheim, Santa Ana and Garden Grove) is children playing, soccer games and the incessant honking of bicycle horns announcing the arrival of roving snack peddlers. Ever wonder what's in those wooden carts? Some of them have duritos (fried wheat crisps) and the chips-and-hot-sauce concoction called tostilocos; some have raspados (snowcone-like flavored ices) and the fermented-masa drink called tejuino. And the best ones of all have elotes—corn on the cob, either grilled or boiled. Americans eat elotes (also called ezquites) with butter and salt; Mexicans usually prefer them slathered with crema or mayonnaise, then sprinkled with chile powder. If you prefer your street food to come in a more transparent vehicle, just about every corner in downtown Santa Ana hosts a fruit cart, from which you can buy a big container of pineapple, mango, melon, cucumber and jicama for less than $5. Don't forget the lime, chile and salt.

66. HIKING AROUND BOLSA CHICA
Bolsa Chica
, the wetlands north of Huntington Beach, almost didn't exist. The habitat for endangered fish and birds was slated for oil drilling, then tract homes, but in a move that would make the California Coastal Commission proud, conservationists in the area banded together and sued to stop any development. After a lengthy restoration that ended just five years ago, tidal waters started to flow into the lagoon for the first time in a century. Take one of the free tours by the Amigos de Bolsa Chica, the Bolsa Chica Conservancy or the Bolsa Chica Land Trust, or just wander the footbridge and the Mesa Trail, then marvel at the forces of NIMBYism used for good.

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My Voice Nation Help
2 comments
Eric Brightwell
Eric Brightwell

*Reasons 45, 58, 67, 87 and 99... because LA County is next door.

Cathie
Cathie

Break of Dawn is in Laguna Hills, not Laguna Niguel. So I guess the only thing Laguna Niguel has going for it is the bare-assed folks at Mugs Away. Big whoop.

 
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