The first part of the loop is a horse trail, mostly covered by trees, built between the semi-rural backyards of the local horse community. You'll see, and most likely startle, horses, goats, dogs, chickens. Then there's a bumpy ride beside a stretch of rusted, unused train track, leading to the more familiar Fullerton Loop
trail. Horse Alley is never steep, nor is it NATURALLY technical. It does, however, have a number of man-made trail obstacles, so stay alert and be on your toes.
The entrance to Horse Alley is very easy to miss, along with some of the mid-trail turns, so I'll be as detailed as possible. Riding north on Juanita Cook Greenbelt Trail
, pass the usual sharp left turn that is Hiltscher Park Trail
, and keep going straight. You'll ride beneath a double bridge that spans the gap overhead. Look carefully for a break in the fence on the left, about 500-600 feet past the bridges. It's really easy to miss.
After the hard left turn, the trail starts along a white-picket horse fence, dropping down and right through a series of trail platforms separated by railroad ties. 200 feet later the trail ends at a narrow, paved driveway. Make a right and an immediate left to get back onto the trail. The trail weaves between the backyards for 3/10ths of a mile, dead-ending onto a residential street, Green Acre Rd. Turn left, uphill, and at the top turn left again onto N. Richmond Knoll. The trail picks up immediately on the right, running for another 3/10ths of a mile behind houses until ending at the major street Euclid Ave., where you stay right.
Beside the next intersection, passing beneath Bastanchury Rd, is a tunnel. Go through it and immediately on the other side, just out of sight, rises another series of platforms, again, separated by raised railroad ties. (After coming close twice, I have yet to make it up in the saddle.) Just ahead are the train tracks. Turn right along them, grind out a mile of track-side debris to the bridge that is Juanita Cook Greenbelt Trail
, and finish the final section of Fullerton Loop
. (I've since discovered that if you turn right on Laguna Rd, the only road crossing along the tracks, you can get back to Juanita Cook Greenbelt Trail
by turning left or right at the next street, Morella Ave.)