I loved this! The Rock Pool was beautiful and yes, the water is safe to swim in. I went on a weekday, so the trail wasn't too heavily trafficked-neither was the Rock Pool. The trailhead I started from was on Mullhulland and across the street from the King Gillette Ranch. I did not have to pay for parking, nor did I even see a parking lot that charged.
The Rock Pool was hard to find, we actually ended up hiking 1.5 miles to Century Lake (at least I think It was Century Lake), and 1.5miles back (3 miles out of the way). So here is a tip for anyone hiking to the Rock Pool. If you took the same trailhead I did, you will come to a clearing that has three large porto-potties. Do not cross the bridge, and do not go to the right, walk straight past the porto-potties. You will come to another fork, do not go to the right, which leads up a slope,if you go up the slope you are going the wrong way! Anyways, hopefully that makes sense, cause the Rock Pool Rules. Going to try to go again next warm day.
The rock pool was so much fun but a little hard to find. The hike to century lake was really pretty and well worth it. If you dont want to pay the 12$ for parking you can park a tiny but up the road where a man is selling strawberries and cherries on Mulholland!
Awesome :) careful though saw some young girl get airlifted out because she broke her leg. They looked like high school student who didn't know any better. They went off coarse into a dangerous area. Other than that the trail is safe and relaxing not too difficult.
The downside is the heavy traffic on the main trails. But....if you head up and out on the less traveler trails the views are terrific and you find yourself mostly alone.
The rock climbing is great for those of us who are not real climbers yet. The rock pools were crowded on the shores but the crisp water, climbing rocks, and great jumps were worth maneuvering through all the watchers on the shores. Will go back to do more with an early start next time.
Went the back way over the dam again. There was way more running water along the trail than I've seen in the last 3 years. Water levels can make the trail slightly trey tepid at times but shouldn't be a problem for the experienced hiker/climber. I do this trail often, always a great time to be had, always a slightly different path. Good luck!
My original idea was to do the just the M.A.S.H. filming location hike and it was completed but with a couple detours. We started at the Grassland trailhead, headed straight to the M.A.S.H site there is a nice picnic area with shade. We hiked a little farther to see what the reagan ranch but I don't think we really knew what we where looking at.... no clear signage. Coming back we stopped by Century Dam and the Rock Pool. We turned the hike into a 11 mile venture and had an easy time adding to the trail. Also went up to another trail that went back to Mulholland highway but it was kinda lame and uneventful. Overall a B+ it was very fun outing