Where to fly - Orange County, Southern California

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Near the Wedge at Corona Del Mar Beach there's a great place to fly from, up on the rocks, kinda hidden from everyone else. On weekdays few people are around, but you should never try this site on a weekend.

View attachment 89520

Here's the place to fly from, situated up on the rocks. Notice you have shade from the rocks in the winter and spring. This is right on the 5mi mark for John Wayne Airport, just 100' on the other side of the rock is outside the 5mi mark. It's perfectly safe on weekdays when nobody is around.
View attachment 89521
Here is one of my videos from The Wedge in Newport Beach. I actually walked out onto the west jetty when launching and performed hand-catches because of the rocks...


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Yes this does suck, but you can still walk to the area and over the hill. You just can’t park around there.
I may try this open area. It’s nothing but dirt right now. Only problem is it’s not as isolated. You can park on the other side of great park blvd.

Hey, this spot worked! I had to pull off the road to park but found a nice wide open field at Great Park Blvd. and Bosque.
 
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Hey, this spot worked! I had to pull off the road to park but found a nice wide open field at Great Park Blvd. and Bosque.
Great. I’ve been flying from the parking lot a little farther down great park rd. There are fields one direction and open construction area across from road. It’s also a little more inconspicuous since it’s away from homes. Either way, both are ok for now and most important allow for parking!
 
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Great. I’ve been flying from the parking lot a little farther down great park rd. There are fields one direction and open construction area across from road. It’s also a little more inconspicuous since it’s away from homes. Either way, both are ok for now and most important allow for parking!
I was avoiding Great Park itself and opting for those open construction spaces. But it would be nice to avoid the mud next time!
 
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I checked out couple of places around Irvine and great park , even though there are some open spaces to practice flying but in my opinion I couldn't find any of the place to be really visually appealing to fly or record video for that matter. Took my wife the other day to teach her how to fly on one of the empty fields near sand canyonbut recording anything was worthless, so now I figured I have to drive out of town to get some good footage! :-(
 
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If you live in La Habra, consider flying over the old Nike Base that was up in the hills in the 60's, just east of Harbor (Fullerton Rd). You can also take a mountain bike up there with a Phantom backpack, providing more options.
Here's a location that's easy parking and flying. 33.959300, -117.900963. Check out the Google street view.
Update: The oil companies have control of this former Nike Base land now. Even through there's an opening in the gate to walk through, there is a "no trespassing" sign, they don't allow hikers or bikers in these hills. However I do see people walking and riding up the hill for exercise on occasion.

upload_2018-1-17_14-37-35.png
 
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View attachment 93658

This was one of the best place to practice flying with ample parking and it's right beside my work place. :)
I've flown at this place before, but was told about a year ago it was closed down to flying. Do people still fly there today?

upload_2018-1-17_14-43-28.png
 
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I've flown at this place before, but was told about a year ago it was closed down to flying. Do people still fly there today?
I didn't see any one around that can ask us not to fly. I have flown 3,4 times so far and didn't have problem. I generally go on weekends and the place is pretty deserted that time...
 
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I heard the driveway to the dirt road i highlighted was now blocked with a no trespassing sign.

I stopped going mainly because it got boring and have since found other locations closer to home for practice or test runs.

My interests today generally focus on scenic sites with incredible views, mostly climbing mountains to the top. I have a new flight plan to fly to the top if Mount Baldy after it gets some good snow on it this winter.
 
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I checked out couple of places around Irvine and great park , even though there are some open spaces to practice flying but in my opinion I couldn't find any of the place to be really visually appealing to fly or record video for that matter. Took my wife the other day to teach her how to fly on one of the empty fields near sand canyonbut recording anything was worthless, so now I figured I have to drive out of town to get some good footage! :-(
Strongly agree. Nothing photogenic to speak of. I have been practicing atti mode and testing distance.
 
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I heard the driveway to the dirt road i highlighted was now blocked with a no trespassing sign.

I stopped going mainly because it got boring and have since found other locations closer to home for practice or test runs.

My interests today generally focus on scenic sites with incredible views, mostly climbing mountains to the top. I have a new flight plan to fly to the top if Mount Baldy after it gets some good snow on it this winter.
Ya, it's boring but perfect for learning what your AC can do. Or can't do!
 
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I've recently had some fun recording wildlife in the Santa Ana River bed, with ducks, birds, geese, etc. That's been interesting lately. Lakes, or parks with lakes are fun, and if you scare some geese into flying, try flying with them, that's quite the thrill.
 
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upload_2018-1-17_21-2-11.png
For those in Anaheim, here's an interesting launch site that overlooks the 241 toll road. It's kinda burnt terrain right now, but this spring I'm sure it will improve. This is a dead end street with no homes on it, so there's never anyone here to complain. The street is actually gated, but you can walk past the gates to the end of the street, which is a cliff! I'm unsure why this street was built in the first place, but it will never be used for anything, it appears. Make sure you park on the north side of the street where there are no signs that say "no parking". There's enough room for about 5 cars before the gate, on the north side of the street. About 500' past the gate you'll find some trees on the right side of the street, handy shade for navigating. Take a lawn chair, get comfortable. There's lots to fly over in the canyon. It's ideal for distance testing.

View attachment 93672

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Last edited:
Joined
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For those in Anaheim, here's an interesting launch site that overlooks the 241 toll road. It's kinda burnt terrain right now, but this spring I'm sure it will improve. This is a dead end street with no homes on it, so there's never anyone here to complain. The street is actually gated, but you can walk past the gates to the end of the street, which is a cliff! I'm unsure why this street was built in the first place, but it will never be used for anything, it appears. Make sure you park on the north side of the street where there are no signs that say "no parking". There's enough room for about 5 cars before the gate, on the north side of the street. About 500' past the gate you'll find some trees on the right side of the street, handy shade for navigating. Take a lawn chair, get comfortable. There's lots to fly over in the canyon. It's ideal for distance testing.

View attachment 93672
This looks awesome. There is so much open land off these toll roads. Just need to find a place to get in and out
 
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Any one here keeping an eye on Mavic air to switch? I am planning to upgrade from P3S! Probably will have less trouble flying anywhere for its low profile looks..
 
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Any one here keeping an eye on Mavic air to switch? I am planning to upgrade from P3S! Probably will have less trouble flying anywhere for its low profile looks..
It's wise to wait ~6mos until they work all the bugs out of the firmware. Keep an eye in the Mavicpilots.com forum with updates from early adopters to make your decision when it's a good time to buy. It appears to be an upgrade from the P3S. It claims 2.5mi range and about the same flight time. The portability is the key advantage.
 
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Any one here keeping an eye on Mavic air to switch? I am planning to upgrade from P3S! Probably will have less trouble flying anywhere for its low profile looks..
I was up at 07:00 this morning and watched the "Adventure Unfolds" launch for the Mavic Air, and was ready to pull the trigger on ordering one.

However, I was hoping for a better camera in the Mavic Air than what is in the Mavic Pro Platinum today. It is marginally better, but at a shorter focal length (24mm MA vs 28mm MPP).

I'm going to wait for the Mavic Pro to get a camera upgrade because I like the longer flight time.

On a side note, did you see the "boomerang" video demonstration with the guy on the edge of the cliff, facing the ocean? That was where I once flew and shot this video...

 

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