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I did this yesterday and it was very enjoyable. First the parking was super packed at 9:30am already. I did I two round in the lots then I was trying to find on the road and there was a nice guy pointing at his car that he’s leaving! Thank you sir!!

Anyway if I didn’t know about the trail, I would be sure to get lost. So you should check where the trail sprit. And like everyone said here it’s not 12 miles. It’s more like 16miles. (My phone die on the way coming down, so there is no accuracy but I was glad that I made it to parking lot) Last couple of miles going up was tough. I kept stopping and looking up when this uphill/switchback end.

I finished my entire 1.5l water going up so make sure you have enough water and snack to refill.
Cosmic cafe save my life on summit.

Going down from summit was confusing. There is no sign going down. I had to walk around the parking lot and observatory gate. There is a trail in the middle of parking lot. But again no sign!

Downhill was easy but sandy and easy to slide so be careful. At the white creek ? Trail sprit and I had no strength to go uphill at the beginning of trail, so I went right to chantry flat for another 3 miles.

Going up and down, there is plenty of gnat and mosquitoes. Be sure to spray bug spray everywhere and I saw a sign that there is a bear so maybe bring a bear bell.

I saw a deer family running by me and looking at me so it was a delightful moment and that it self made my day.

Great hike.My Wife and I are in pretty good shape and got in a seriously good work out. Saw Hollywood sign from top and bottom.Both incredible views. Bring plenty of water.The water spouts along the way were not working,they look like old pipes that are probably unreliable. There are an incredible amount of intersections on this trail.There is even a 5 point intersection.I used my all trails pro gps app and just tracked ourselves and checked at various points along the way.Its a good thing I did because some trails do not reconnect with each other and you will end up in a different area of the park! No shade but amazing breeze.Plenty of free parking.

Nice easy trail to follow.....TRAIL closed when you reach the turn to go to the dripping cave due to regrowth from fire. So unable to finish the last .4 miles. Tons of rabbits and a nice cool creek to splash your face if you get hot

Great hike for training. Doing Mt. Whitney in a couple of weeks and the consistent above 8K ft. helps.

Awesome workout. Pretty steep and rocky at times but the views are amazing. Worth the pain

I love this....

The views were amazing, but I'm not really sure the hike should be rated at "hard". There is minimal ascending or descending. Great for a few hours and head past the shipwreck for more amazing views.

Great trail, well constructed and maintained. A push for this 71 yr old

hiking
9 days ago

An amazingly beautiful hike!!! Took two groups there and it was really great fun! We used the rope to get down the cliff which was a great call and hiking along the water is fun and challenging at the same time. We actually climbed up the cliff about a half a mile after the shipwreck and then it’s about an 8 minute drive back to the car! I highly recommend this hike!!!

Easy Hike and Beautiful Views!

Excellent training hike - I took the loop via Stuyvesant camp to the top and returning on the opposite side.

1st thee+ miles felt great - I started early to avoid the heat (6:00am) and bugs. Once I passed Stuyvesant though the uphill kicked in. There is some serious uphill for 3 miles so be prepared for a long slog.

The observatories, exhibits and cafe were a welcome respite while preparing for the descent. The descent is tough - what goes up steep will come down steep so pace yourself.

My GPS unit had me at 15 miles and I spent a little over 7 hours on the hike (3 hrs up, 2 1/4 hr down and about 1.5 hrs trying to recover at the top and during the steep switchbacks). Key is to pace yourself and just keep moving.

Because of the lower elevation, heat will play a bigger factor so watch out - the downhill was interminable but the last 1/2 mile climb to the parking lot in 93+ degree heat was rough when your tired and ready to be done lol

Leaving early helped minimize the bugs while the afternoon sleep also seemed to have tempered them. I really only saw the gnats and they were less than many other trails

Overall excellent hike that let me know I had done some hiking! Be proud of your accomplishment

Start early in the summer, it gets hot, but everyone says that. I was prepared for the heat and started before 7 and was surprised how windy and cooler it was above Devils Backbone. Never took off the extra long sleeve until I arrived at the ski lodge on the return trip.

Beautiful views and a fun day hike. I used this hike to train and test gear for an upcoming trip to Mt Langley. It was a good moderate hike. Nothing crazy. I will go back but next time I’ll approach from Idyllwild and skip the tram. Once was enough for me. Cheers

hiking
10 days ago

Super easy trail with incredible views. I enjoyed all of the markers describing the native plant life.

A nice hike with family. Had fun climbing on the rocks!

Beautiful views with challenging terrain.

Great hike, took the entire family, lots of shade

Beautiful view once you get to the top!

Great layout but the dry climate over the past few years has forced all of this once beautiful flowered reserve into hibernation. A few cactus blooms were evident but the rest of the coastal vegetation is mostly dry green or dead brown. The long beach strut concludes at a climbable rock formation extending into the sea, the hill climb up is a good short walk with some new erosion barriers and steps, and the ocean views get better and better at each level. Torrey Pines despite the current sad hiatus of beautiful plant growth remains one of America and California’s most stunning sites.

hiking
15 days ago

Beautiful forest hike. View is spectacular but it needs to be very clear to see the ocean and Catalina. Nice view of San Gorgonio peak. Went at 6am to avoid the mountain bikers.

This was way to hard for me and I didn’t realize it until I had already started. We did a night hike cause the full moon happing and I didn’t get that far cause the elevation plus the steepness of the hike was way to much for me and totally kicked my butt and I had to turn back around. If you are an experienced hiker and are extremely Athletic you will love this. The view is gorgeous at the summit from what I heard.

hiking
16 days ago

Beautiful trail! We ran into no other hikers either the entire hike. Its a hidden gem of Malibu.

So my girlfriend and I hiked this one today. We hike at least twice a week between 4-8 miles each hike. This one was definitely not an easy one.
To add to it we kinda took a wrong route before around the campsite and up some little trail of about 2 miles. Wasted energy and end of July heat was so amazing. Lol.
Overall it’s a great hike with beautiful reward at the end. The pond had water btw. It’s a bit of incline for the first 2.5 miles and totally worth it. Not for beginners though. We loved the solidarity cause no one is hiking this trail. We were the only one there. Probably cause it hard with no waterfall reward at the end. Would do it again.

So beautiful. Well worth it. It was our first hike we’ve ever done in San Diego. We hiked with our 10 month old in a hiking carrier and there were only a couple spots my husband needed help. Loved it.

Cool trail and very peaceful but we were surprised that the grand view point at the end actually faces away from the lake. Was a lot of work (3.3m)! .5 mile or so into the trail has the lake views, we didn’t realize that from all the pictures and assumed they were of the end!

Great hike! Packed my lunch and took a break just before getting to the top. Lots of shade so it’s a comfortable hike in the summer heat.

hiking
21 days ago

This one is a great family hike. Very kid friendly. Incline is not bad at all and trail is well traveled.

Close to UCSD and beautiful!

Time: 10:45am at beginning of trailhead
Followed AllTrails map.
Temperature: 80s.

If you stick to the All trail map, the mileage is pretty accurate. Very little shade on this hike. Path is narrow in a lot of areas so be careful.
If you stop at the location specified in the map, there’s a shaded open area with rocks to sit and lay on next to the river/ stream which was green from the algae but still nice and serene.
There were quite a few dirt bikes at the beginning before the trailhead which kicked up a lot of dirt. They don’t tend to slow down so watch out. Apparently it’s a thing here. The majority of hiking trail does not allow motorized vehicles.

A couple of reviewers mentioned a waterfall on this trail. You need to detour off the trail down a pretty steep hill to go to Aztec Falls. This was about 1/3 of the way in so look out for it if that’s what you want to do.

Tip: bring extra water if weather is hot
Bring poles if you go down to Aztec falls. It will help.

Fun trail for anyone any day.

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