While often steep, the trails of Towsley and Wiley Canyons are not particularly technical and are well maintained. Road shoes are adequate in all but the muddiest of conditions.
Ed Davis Park is a popular location, and the trails can be quite crowded on busy days. Weekends tend to be the highest time for traffic. Aim for early mornings. Also, keep in mind that these are multi-use trails, and while pedestrians dominate here, mountain bikers are not an uncommon sight. It may be safest to give way to them on steeper segments.
On the southern side of the transition from Los Angeles's coastal regions and the high desert of the Antelope Valley, temperatures tend to be higher in the Santa Clarita area. Day time highs in the summer can reach or exceed the nineties. Keep the heat, and lack of shade on some segments of the trail, in mind when planning a visit during the warmer months.
The starting or ending point to the popular Don Mullally route, this path making its way into Wiley Canyon is the loop's easiest segment. Wiley Canyon is typically accessed via Towsley Canyon Road, just a short distance from the lower parking area. The doubletrack is easy to spot branching off from the road to the left, marked by a sign.
Wiley Canyon begins as packed dirt doubletrack. Its gentle grade passes through tall grasses and shady trees, and is in excellent condition with very few rocks, roots, or other impediments. A narrow spur to Canyon View Loop
breaks to the right less than a tenth of a mile in. As the green walls of the canyon slowly close in to the trail, the incline will ever so gradually increase, a trend that will continue until the end. Look for a small creek off to the right as Wiley Canyon transitions from grassland to forest. The shade through here can be a welcome break for runners on the return leg of a loop. Enjoy it, it won't last.
The eastern end of Canyon View Loop
is found a bit after the quarter mile, branching right and climbing up the hillside. Continuing onward, a few short singletrack segments will split off the main path, but all return to the main trail within a few hundred feet. By the time Wiley Canyon hits the half mile point, the incline will start to become noticeable, though not difficult.
The first of Ed Davis Park's many tar pits is found shortly before the mile point. About ten to fifteen feet across, the smell is distinct and stronger on hot days. A few more can be seen – or at least smelled – before the trail ends a short distance ahead.
Wiley Canyon Trail
's southernmost point is its finish. A bench marks where the trail turns west, continuing onward as Towsley View Loop.