Explore do it soon - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

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really challenging for a beginner. most of it is uphill

great anual hike to do in October

Great for kids.

Parking lot & turnouts full. Paid $20 for valet parking near store. Started hike off Sturtevant trail at 8:15 a.m. Took us 4 hours to reach summit (Observatory) and 3 hours to return/ loop around through Wilson trail (Upper Winter Creek). Return trailhead is off the cafe parking lot, however it is not marked.Tracker recorded 15.5 miles.Don't be deceived, it's a strenuous hike. Beautiful mountainous views.

Love it. Plan for 7 hours to the Bridge and back to parking. >11 miles not 8.9 as stated on All Trails.

This is one of those hikes that could range from good too amazing. It all depends on how adventurous, agile, and athletic you are.


The hike is relatively easy to access. The private property factor didn't really hamper us at all. Here is our detailed journey...

If you don't go in the summer (like us) the camp is basically abandoned and you can probably park there. But just to be safe, we parked at the church just down the road from Torrey Pines Drive, then hiked back to Torrey pines drive (about 0.5 miles).

Next, follow Torrey Pines Drive all the way through the camp (you will pass a lake on your left). Keep going until the hill dips down and you will see a metal gate blocking off a paved road. Follow THAT paved road until it turns to a dirt trail. Keep on hiking up, eventually you will see a sign for HIDDEN FALLS.

Like another reviewer mentioned, it looks like its pointing you back, but its actually pointing at a super sharp switchback that goes straight up the mountainside to your right. The trail is visible, but almost looks like it could not be a trail lol. Just know at this point you are going straight up.

Hike up this steep hillside for a while and eventually you will see a rope going down in to the canyon. We thought the rope was too earlier and kept going. When the trail eventually ended we descended into the canyon through our own path. I don't recommend this. It was difficult...

Take the rope down. There is an obvious trail that leads to another rope nearby. Take the 2nd rope down into the canyon and you will be at "the falls".

Now, if you have some extra adventure in you, you can keep hiking up the falls. There are some beautiful and unique spots on the way up. It's not easy because its slippery and there are a ton of hidden loose rocks, but if you keep trekking up there is a gorgeous, massive tree on the hillside and some other really cool spots. Well worth it and my favorite part of the hike, personally. We went REALLY far up though.

In short, the main falls area (where the ropes take you) was okay, nothing too special. But, if you venture further up the canyon it makes it well worth it to see the unique trees and environment in general.

Beautiful day to hike! There were a few scenic spots to stop and enjoy the view. The trail wasn't very difficult and was perfect amount of traffic getting to the trail head at 10:00a.

on Castle Rock Trail

hiking
1 day ago

Did this hike with the High Desert Hiking Group. Took my two dogs. Trail starts out with a rocky steep incline to Castle Rock (good work out). We stopped at Castle Rock. Very nice view of the lake. After the stop, I continued the trail to 2N10. Another nice incline surrounded by Pine Trees. By the time I returned there were people everywhere.

great hike, every hiker in SoCal should do this at least once, however, it is very heavily travelled. if you enjoy some seclusion on your hikes this is not it

Do not leave anything in your car. My car was broken into there. Someone busted out my back window. Pretty scary, especially since this is a busy trail and people always coming and going, and your car is parked among so many other cars, with many people around.

Still closed, there are several people whom are ignoring the closure. I brought my kids to hike the trail. Although there were several hikers ignoring the closure I had to tell my kids that sometimes people don’t always do the right thing and that our foot print less traveled makes a bigger foot print for the betterment of nature, and left with out going onto the trail. Hopefully it will open back up again soon...

trail running
2 days ago

Signs were poor, but trail was great.

Love it!

great hike and steady up hill hike definitely worth the hike! dog friendly. better to go early morning when it's not to busy.

Not too difficult, but it is all rocks so make sure you wear good shoes!

Ok, I blasted another hiker with bear spray on this trail today. I don't know if you (hiker) will ever use this app but if you ever do, you will know this is your unique experience on this trail and this msg is for you. I'm so sorry! I had just tested my can as it had been in storage and had not yet replaced the safety. My finger was still on the trigger when you approached around that blind corner. I apologize immensely! BTW, since you didn't know what it was that I sprayed when I yelled "hold your breath and run down", you might look into carrying some on future hikes since you were alone and making no noise. Again, I'm really sorry I blasted you. At least you were almost to the end of the trail. :0

Trail was beautiful and somewhat challenging. Excellent views and sometimes a bit mysterious as there are a lot of bends in the trail. Great trail for experienced mountain bikers too. I'll do it again for sure.

Sorry again to the lady I bear maced...

Beautiful hike, many river crossings and scenic sights. Bring lots of water and keep track of your steps because it’s easy to get lost since there’s almost not a single sign

We’ve seen a bear. We turned around because we’ve been only 2 people and wanted to be save. As far as we got it was nice.

Cougar Crest trail was closed so I decided to take this trail and had a great time. It’s not to steep and would probably be great for a family with kids.

It took me an hour and a half to get up and 45 minutes down but I’m probably an above average hiker when it comes to speed. 4 hours set aside would probably be best especially if you want to take it the amazing view about 500 feet after the sign for the Point.

Beautiful place

no water right now, very overgrown. would be great in season

Beautiful hike, many river crossings and scenic sights. Bring lots of water and keep track of your steps because it’s easy to get lost since there’s almost not a single sign

Beautiful hike, many river crossings and scenic sights. Bring lots of water and keep track of your steps because it’s easy to get lost since there’s almost not a single sign

our first time here great location very nice trail some difficulty going up on part of the trail otherwise it was easy take plenty of water we took stuff to snacks on their is also a place that makes some good bbq at the entrance to the park trail.

our first time here going up was a great cardio workout make sure and pack a light long sleeve for sunny or windy days.

I underestimated this hike a bit. It is definitely harder than I thought. But depending on the trail you take it could be easier. Landslides have removed part of the old trail so you have to travel on the dried up river bed which is fine. A lot of shade. Towards the end there was a clearing for sun but it is overall shady. Lots of river crossings. Bring some good boots or waterproof shoes. Some extra socks would be good too. Lots of fun! Very beautiful. Chances to see mountain goats which I saw none. Bungee jumping at the end. Expensive! $120. Wear some good pants. Wasn’t a lot of people there. There are some camp sites there as well. Next to a shooting range too.

nature trips
7 days ago

I’ve easy trail and enjoyed the interpretive aspect.

Super easy stroll. We did it as a night hike with headlamps and flashlights. Added to the adventure.

Dislike. No shade. Lots of graffiti and trash.

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