Dawn Mine Trail Loop

HARD 178 reviews
#2 of 132 trails in

Dawn Mine Trail Loop is a 5.1 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Altadena, CA that features a waterfall and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, camping, and nature trips and is accessible from September until May. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

5.1 miles 1509 feet Loop

dogs on leash



nature trips







wild flowers


old growth

over grown


[Still closed due to fire damage] Dawn Mine Trail is a 4.4 mile loop trail that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, mountain biking & walking and is accessible from September until May. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

3 days ago

Found it no problem, super fin trail to take, just follow the arrows painted on rocks and the old mining debris and you know your on the right track. Waterfall was almost completely dry. Need adventure pass or you can risk it.

7 days ago

Did this trail yesterday and it was awesome. As many people have mentioned before, it was difficult to follow the trail after seeing the cottage. Would definitely recommend having a gpx and navigational equipment in case you get lost.

The hike itself wasn't too bad. I would say it's more moderate then difficult, but definitely have hiking boots with good traction.

We started around midday which was a terrible idea, it got so hot. Luckily there was some cool shade over about half of the trail. Bring lots of water!

The trail was easy up until the last mile where there were some substantial inclines and a lot of boulder scrambling.

The mine at the end was awesome. However, we couldn't explore all of it because someone started a fire inside and it was filled with smoke... easy way to get yourself killed. There is no ventilation in the mine so if you start a fire you're going to give yourself carbon monoxide poisoning.

14 days ago

A great short hike if you're up for it. Start real early and catch the sun rising.

15 days ago

nice trail, good workout and my favorite hike so far.

19 days ago

This has probably been my favorite, if not my second favorite hike in the Los Angeles area. Start off by parking down by the camp grounds. You need a adventure pass to park within the park. Then proceed towards the campground. From here. You have two options. 1) head up towards the waterfall and go up some super steep trail to the ridge above. Or you have option #2. You get to the trail marker right before the campground and head right up that trail instead of left to the waterfall trail. This is what we did. It may add a tiny bit more to the distance but saves you from a steep uphill. Once at the top of that trail, take a left along the fire road. This road will lead you to another trail sign on the left. Take that trail down to the river. Next major turn comes at the cabin by the river. Take the farthest left trail towards the river bed. The river is mostly dried up but does have some pockets of water. The trail is mostly shaded but does have some areas that are out in the open. From the cabin, you are going to follow the river up the mountain until you hit the mine. The trail does go back and forth across the river bed. Just follow the river. There are some rocks that have black painted arrows to try and help guide you. Also some people have laid logs across paths that will lead you the right way. Once done at the mine, my friend and I couldn't find the path to continue the loop so we just took the same trial back out. Make sure you bring a flash light and a change of socks. Once inside the mine, there is water and it truly is pitch black. Be safe! Don't forget to sign the book in the main area once inside the mine. It took us roughly 4 hours to complete this hike.

20 days ago

Very good hike, easy to lose the trail in some parts.

29 days ago

Loved this hike! It started getting difficult towards the last mile of the hike. We went out and back instead of the loop and it was easier going back. We saw a bear and her cub about half way through the hike! I definitely recommend this trail.

1 month ago

Nice hike with some moderate climbing.

1 month ago

Loved the trail! Challenging with satisfaction upon reaching the mine.

One of my favorite hikes in LA. Once you get down into the canyon you take a right. From there follow signs, rock towers, and markings. Requires some bouldering but not too difficult. Once you see the old wheel climb up too it, go past it and the entrance to the mine is almost hidden under a rock. Don't forget a flashlight! If you want to do the loop- with your back facing the mine/wheel you'll see a trail entrance kitty corner on your left up the hill. From there just continue to head left and up. Takes about 3-4 hours depending on how fast you are. And dogs are fine on the trail as long as they're ok with climbing/in good shape.

2 months ago

It was an awesome hike! I wouldn't say anything about trails because there are not a lot on this hike. You have to follow markers and navigation to get to the mines but when you get there it's pretty awesome and well worth it....

2 months ago

I love the trail, I wasn't really prepared, I didn't think it was going to be this hard. I will definitely come back.

2 months ago

it was an amazing hike that will challenge you. you against you hike forsure I really enjoyed it... make sure to find your path back correctly... for I got lost.. but that's okay because sometimes you have to be lost to find yourself. worth the 5 miles. I'd say about an hour 20 mins hike depending on your speed. way down is faster but pay attention to your trail... or you will get lost. park in the parking lot I suggest by campsite because I got a ticket.... lol and it's not cheap... just saying .. also one last thing alot of water and a head lamp. happy trails !!!!

2 months ago


2 months ago

DO NOT BRING DOGS ON THIS HIKE! I have a strong healthy lab/golden mix named jack, took him on the hike and he suffered heat exhaustion after only 3 miles. the trail is through the mountains in uncovered terrain, no shade, almost all uphill.
It is a good challenging hike for an experienced hiker, great scenic views and cool caves. Bring lots of water, just leave the dogs at home. Don't subject them to this hike, if you want to hike with your dog take them on a different trail.
My dog almost died, we got stranded woth no cell reception. I had to carry him (60 lbs) about a mile because he was unable to walk. I used up all of our water dousing his fur to keep him cool. Luckily some strangers came by on mountain bikes and agreed to bike down the mountain for cell reception and called a Dog Rescue for us.
Jack is safe and well but it cost a lot in vet bills. He burned his paws and had difficulty walking for about a week.

Leave the pets at home on this one, please.

3 months ago

This is a great hike and do it all the time. It is a hike for experienced hikers. I wouldn't recommend bringing pets or children as there are rattle snakes in certain areas and lots of Boulder scrambling. The trail is relatively easy to follow. If you have all trails use it people it tracks you. We had a guy loose his dog to heat stroke last weekend. Remember to stay hydrated. Water does run almost the entire trip. The mine is easy to find when you are on the path you will go under a iron pipe sticking out of the ground. At that point your 2 hours in and about 5 min from the mine. Once you do go under the pole. Continuously look up to your left. You will see what looks like 2 steal beams coming out from the rock about 150 ft above you. Hike up to that. Directly to the left is the mine. Please do not leave signs as we do take them down to keep the takers out who like to tag the upper mine. Follow the ribons and you'll be fine. Even better use your all trails app and you'll be good. Enjoy your hikes. Hopefully this are isn't destroyed by the fire.

3 months ago

The full loop, if you follow the map, is closer to 7.5 miles and really difficult in parts - single person trail with steep cliff side dropoffs and a lot of bouldering. The trail can be tricky to find off the fire road at the top of the loop. It's to the right of the Dawn Mine historical marker. The canyon part was really fun with a lot of bouldering. A super fun trail, but definitely for experienced hikers. Bring lots of water. We did it in about 4 hours with two short dogs and two kids.

3 months ago

3 months ago

4 months ago