Upper Hellhole Canyon Trail

HARD 1 reviews

Upper Hellhole Canyon Trail is a 3 mile out and back trail located near Ranchita, CA and is only recommended for very experienced adventurers. The trail is primarily used for hiking and is accessible from December until April.

3.0 miles 1600 feet Out & Back


1 year ago

This trail was definitely not bad for the first few miles. Wide open area, easy trail to follow. Once you get to the first set of palms the trail drastically changes. I believe the spring/pool/falls of the first oasis is where many people call it quits. After the long walk in open desert under the sun, it's easy to see why most people stop there and turn around. Supposedly there is a second set of falls further up the canyon. However I was not able to find it. My friend and I hiked and scrambled for at least 2 hours up the canyon post first pool. The trail diverges every few yards making it impossible to follow a trail. There is a clear target by following along the creek & going up canyon it continues to narrow. After the long struggle, we called it quits, though I'm certain we were extremely close to the larger falls. Wish I could share more.

Quick tips:
Be prepared for sun exposure. Be prepared to scramble major boulders. Bring water & snacks. If you're happy with the first pool, it's ok to turn around. Want a butt kicking adventure, try to find the secondary falls.