Rustic Canyon Loop Trail

MODERATE 36 reviews

Rustic Canyon Loop Trail is a 5.5 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Pacific Palisades, CA that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, and mountain biking and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

5.5 miles 1302 feet Loop

dogs on leash

hiking

mountain biking

walking

forest

river

views

waterfall

muddy

rocky

Rustic Canyon Loop is a 5 mile loop trail located near Pacific Palisades, California that features a waterfall. The trail is primarily used for hiking and is accessible year-round. Be careful as there have been recent reports of the trail being washed out.

hiking
10 days ago

I like hiking, but I'm not physically fit for hiking uphills and going through rocky narrow paths and that's what this trail gave me mostly haha. Even though I feel like I almost died, this trail was such an adventure and we didn't even go through the graffiti abandoned buildings and the backbone bridge that everyone is talking about -- sadly, we didn't know about those spots. We had a friend who apparently has been here before who lead us through a looping wooden stairs (that's probably about 400 stairs) that's all covered in dirt and then we were supposed to go through this pathway thats over the edge of the mountain but it was closed so we decided to just go down, which was the muddy and wet creek area. Going through the creek was all our first times so we didn't even know what was ahead of us or what obstacles we had to face (even the guy who had been to Rustic Canyon trail before). Going through the creek felt like I was at an anaconda movie, thank goodness there weren't any snakes. After a rain and going through that creek with a non hiking shoes was not the greatest idea, but again it was an adventure. Then we finally found an actual trail path which lead us to the Will Rogers park and walked up through an actual trail (that's when we started to see other hikers..I was so happy. I thought I'd never get outta that creek). About .5-a mile into this canyon trail, we got lost of trying to go back to where we started without going through the creek. So we went back. Back down and through the creek. And that's when we realized that there were poison oaks at the creek. Going back up was the hardest. I had to stop so many times and my two friends who was with me had to keep motivating me that we were almost there. Going back up those wooden stairs killed me more, I told my friends to just leave me. I couldn't feel my legs.
If anyone has hiked the Potato Chip Rock, this hike was worse for me. I got battle scars all over my body from branches and thorns to prove it and a sore ass body the next morning. Again, it was an adventure but never again.

hiking
5 months ago

This was an interesting adventure. I took this clockwise (I'd recommend the other way for better views). In the direction I went...
The hike up to the peak is a great trail, well maintained, with spectacular view of the LA basin and Santa Monica Bay. Could see all the way to downtown LA, San Pedro Hill, Catalina, and even Santa Barbara Island.
The trail down to Rustic Canyon is somewhat overgrown and seriously eroded (but empty, if you want solitude). Fairly steep in places.
Upper Rustic Canyon has a number of deteriorated buildings and foundations, all covered in graffiti (an interesting psychedelic look on the 'barn'. Unfortunately, the graffiti extends to trees and rocks.
Lower Rustic Canyon is an 'unmaintained' trail... it's overgrown in places, but also it really means it is mostly in the creekbed, so with a few inches of water as there was today and many crossings, it requires some agility (and will result in wet feet, if you don't have good shoes). After a rain, it might be impassable in places.

trail running
5 months ago

Gross. A reminder why hiking in LA is disappointing.

6 months ago

7 months ago

7 months ago

We had a good time! Not hard,nice views, good workout!

hiking
9 months ago

I have a group going this saturday at 12. were meeting up if anyone wants to join we would love to have you. We all want to get to see it again before torn down so if you've been come join us or if you havent and would like to we are always looking for some new company on hikes.

1 year ago

Trail is pretty rustic, plan to get muddy, advise is to wear waterproof boots... it was fun though....

hiking
1 year ago

Found the trail decided to go backwards. Glad we did, it was a hot day with no shade reached the peak then a straight down making easy. Made pass the graffiti barn and an abandoned Volkswagen van to the small waterfall. Prepare to get your shoes ruined from the water streams there's no avoiding the mud. Just some advisory. Eventually made it out alive relived.

1 year ago

hiking
1 year ago

1 year ago

I do this trail three times a week. If I'm alone I stay on the main road but venturing down is fun.

1 year ago

hiking
1 year ago

1 year ago

hiking
1 year ago

My 13 year old son and I just tried to do he Will Rogers Park, Inspiration, backbone to Rustic Canyon loop and the end of the canyon was so overgrown with poison oak and there was no trail to be found other than walking in the stream. It got scary. We back tracked and found some nice hikers that led us out by way of the Sullivan Fire Rd and drove us back to our car at Will Rogers State Park. If I'd have known how hard it was to find the trail and how wet and muddy we would have to get I would have just turned around after getting to the bridge on the backbone trail because that was truly amazing.

1 year ago

I only did part of the loop. We entered from Sullivan Fire Road. Took the paved road about 2/3 of a mile to the staircase down the mountain. We counted 500 steps (25 flights)! Once your down you follow the graffiti painted walls and streets to an abandoned graffiti house. Very cool to see all the art. Urban myth is it was once a Nazi Sympathizer ranch built in WWII. The Will Roger Park ranger wouldn't confirm that. But cool to see. The stairs are a leg burner!

I've done many different trails in Southern California and this is one of my favorites. It's definitely a challenge, But well worth the effort. Depending on the season you might get a little wet there is a stream running at the very end of the loop. But it's beautiful

hiking
2 years ago

We started from Will Roger State Park up the Inspiration Loop Trail - Backbone Trail - Josepho Spur Trail and down to Rustic Canyon Trail.

It was nice going up the trail to Murphy Ranch. Great photo ops here for the Graffiti abandon buildings. We ran into a fair amount of people on Sunday. From the Murphy Ranch look for a small trail on the right to get back to the Rustic Canyon. Beware of the "un-maintained" condition of the trail. We thought the creek looks dry but later found ourselves going through muddy, wet going down stream through the wild canyon. A lot of fun going into this last section. You will need all hands and feet to go through this adventure.

The entrance fee to park at Will Rogers State Park is $12.00. Bring the exact change as there is no one at the gate to give you a change.

2 years ago

has anyone seen the water falls? I didn't see them