Box Springs Mountain Reserve is 2,329 acres of picturesque rocky peaks located between Riverside and Moreno Valley, rising immediately northeast of the Interstate 215/State Route 60 interchange where a large “M” is clearly visible just below the southernmost peak. Because it abruptly emerges out of relatively flat terrain, trail users can enjoy spectacular views of the surrounding area and other distant mountain ranges from almost anywhere within the Reserve. It is bounded by residential development, but little formal planning has been done since it became County open space. Hikers and equestrians have been its primary users, but it is becoming popular with the mountain biking community. Unfortunately, many of its existing trails are unsustainably steep and suffer from extensive erosion, and trail connections within the Reserve and with its surrounding communities are limited. There is great potential for a quality trail system serving the local area and the surrounding region.
This comprehensive trails master plan addressed both the Reserve and its surrounding area, including regional connectivity, assessing existing trails and staging areas, conceptual design of new trails, and the development of sustainable design and maintenance standards to be used for this Reserve and the County’s other open space reserves that highlight a positive trail experience. New trails are planned to replace the most unsustainably steep existing routes, including technically challenging trails to take advantage of the Reserve’s abundant rock outcrops. Also, a paved route along an existing rail line will directly connect Moreno Valley and Riverside, a “low stress” off-street route that will also provide access to the Reserve without having to drive there. Both of these facilities were requested in public outreach comments. This plan will support future acquisition decisions for an improved open space recreational trail system and staging areas in and surrounding the Box Springs Mountain Reserve.