7 Best Waterfall Hikes in LA Every Angeleno Should Do
Updated: 3 days ago
Los Angeles isn't known for getting a lot of rain, but believe it or not, we do get just enough to keep LA's waterfalls flowing.
There's just something special about watching a stream of water flow over rocks, especially after working up a sweat to get there, right?!
Los Angeles has endless things to do outside, so it's about time I round up the best waterfall hikes.
Here are 7 hikes to do if you are ready to chase some waterfalls in Los Angeles!
Solstice Canyon Falls - Malibu
In the Santa Monica Mountains off of PCH you'll find Solstice Canyon Falls. This is an easier hike if you are mainly going for the views rather than the workout! On your 2.6 mile hike you will see ruins of Malibu Mansions (including the "Darth Vader House") with so much history until you get to the 30-foot waterfall (less dramatic during the summer). The trail is a full loop and the clockwise route is said to be the easier route. If you want to continue on for more exercise, take the Rising Sun and Sosotmo Trails, which have a breathtaking ocean view payoff, or the Dry Canyon Trail, which ends in another seasonal waterfall.
Trailhead: 3998 Solstice Canyon Rd, Malibu 90265
Escondido Falls - Malibu
Escondido Falls is one of SoCal's most popular and biggest waterfall. This is the perfect nature hike when you don't have a lot of time to spend to get to your beautiful destination. You have two choices to take on this trail to get to the highest waterfall in the Santa Monica Mountains. You can either hike to the first waterfall with a 50-foot drop, or choose the more adventurous trail to the 150-foot falls.
Trailhead: Winding Way and Pacific Coast Highway
Eaton Canyon - Altadena
Head north of Pasadena to find Eaton Canyon in Altadena. You'll find tons of families and dogs on this mostly shaded 3.5 mile hike to get to the 40-foot waterfall (you'll hear it before you see it). Be ready to get your feet wet along a trail that is lined with beautiful blooms during the spring. Please be advised, this is a very popular trail that typically draws bigger crowds.
Currently, Eaton Canyon requires you to present proof of registration and a photo ID to enter.
Trailhead: 1750 North Altadena Drive, Pasadena, CA 91107
The Grotto - Malibu
The Grotto trail is a 3 mile hike to find the waterfall that flows into a hidden cave. But, wait! It could be slightly difficult, as there are two paths. You should stay left when you see the open area and then keep going until you see rocks. Use your bouldering skills and climb the rocks and you will find The Grotto.
Trailhead: 12896 Yerba Buena Road, Malibu, CA90265
Hermit Falls - Arcadia
If you are looking to take less steps and see more water, then head to the Angeles National Forest to Hermit Falls. Go east toward Sierra Madre and you'll be driving up a winding road on the side of a mountain.
Trailhead: Chantry Flat Rd, Arcadia 91006
Santa Ynez Falls- Topanga
The 2.5-mile round trip hike on the Santa Ynez Waterfall Trail starts at Topanga State Park in the Pacific Palisades. The lush creekside trail is shaded and leads to more of a gorge than full-fledged waterfall - it's beautiful all the same. The Eagle Rock route is longer (9 miles roundtrip) and offers a view of the coastline and valley.
Trailhead: 20829 Entrada Rd., Topanga 90290
Trail Canyon Falls - Tujunga
Ready for a hike with a little bit more of a challenge than just a flat trail? Trail Canyon Falls hike is approximately four miles with plenty of shade and gorgeous greenery every turn you make. You are in a secluded canyon along Golden Greek with a 700 feet elevation gain heading toward a 30 -foot waterfall.
Trailhead: 19607 N. Trail Canyon Road in Tujunga, CA