Explore the most popular lake trails in Angeles National Forest with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Wonderful hike that spans several trail junctures. Started at Lake Jackson and followed the Jackson Lake Trail for roughly two miles. Trail is well used and easy to follow as sections used to be old forestry roads. Elevation is gained at an even pace with plenty of scenery to view. This portion offers majestic views of the Mojave Desert and the lake once you climb high enough. The trail ends at the PCT. From here, follow the trail to the right. This section of the PCT runs along the ridge like just below Jackson Flat Campground and will ultimately intersect the Baden-Powell parking lot. Sections of this trail are steep but well trafficked. Once reaching the parking area, there are several options that can be taken. This map is for Vincent’s Cabin, however I decided to walk a little farther and went to the Big Horn mine instead for a little more of a challenge. This made my total trip 12 miles. You may also choose Baden-Powell or Big Rock Creek if feeling adventurous. Just make sure you bring enough water and allow enough time. The return trip was a little strenuous as I worked my way back up the PCT until I reached the ridge again. From there everything evened out as the PCT is fairly flat in this section. After finding the Jackson Lake Trail, I started my decent back to the lake an my vehicle. Overall, well worth the adventure and added a lot more challenge to one of my favorite hikes.

Definitely not hard as rated. Wide truck path with slight incline/decline. No shade though so not ideal for warmer weather

Hiked this today and it was glorious with some spectacular views.

Judging from the reviews, this trail seemed pretty simple... however when we got there this was not the case... it looks like the canyon flooded and knocked down a bunch of foliage and trees. Had to climb through bushes and fallen trees just to make it up the canyon. Gates that once blocked the road have been washed up and are strewn off the side of the trail. We started at 6am and after almost 5 hours we had only made it about 6 miles in... you are constantly having to cross the creek... there is no real trail. Would not recommend.

Great hike until you actually reach Fish Canyon. The canyon is washed out and a total scramblers paradise. Unless you enjoy jumping, ducking, and crawling during your hikes; I would advise you to do an out and back to the start of Fish Canyon.

Hiked the loop clockwise this year on Super Bowl Sunday. Started at 6:30 and did not see a single person the entire day, very rare for these mountains. A few icy snow patches south of Windy Gap but not an issue. Hiked to Mt. Hawkins before heading back and down the ridge to bag the other peaks. nice day!

the first three miles on the trail are a bit steep but it's definitely worth it!

it was a very good trail we started out at the visitor center and Wrightwood and hiked all the way down to Jackson Lake, so coming back was all uphill but that was a good hike

This is a beautiful trail and quite a workout. Great way to start the new year.

Beautiful day in the San Gabriels - in addition to doing the loop and summiting South Hawkins, Sadie Hawkins, and Middle Hawkins, we also hiked over to Hawkins and Throop Peaks. 16 awesome miles of trail therapy. Trail conditions were great. The only drawback was no clear trail signage for Sadie Hawkins or Middle Hawkins. All in all, a great day.

secluded , no one leaves trash behind and scenic

10 months ago

I get the tracking data from my friend in our group. It is 13.5 miles. Definitely more than the 11.1 miles stated in the description

10 months ago

I took the reverse of the route listed above. I went to So Mt Hawkins via the Mt Hawkins Fire Road (the sign indicates 4.8 miles). Coming back I used the Hawkins Ridge Trail and PCT to Windy Gap. Then descend to campground (2.5 miles). I think this is a easier route because the fire road is a gradual ascent while going up to Windy Gap is relatively steep ascent. I think the distance is more than 11.1 mile.

Still some water left. Starts about a mile from trail head.

Monday, April 24, 2017

Fantastic hike! Beautiful place when you get to the canyon near water. Be prepared to do some stream hopping. Worth a full day and I would have stayed there quite longer. Park on the side of the road by the trail-head and walk down to the valley. The road goes up with very little rise over the next few miles, some shady spots. The best is when you get into the vegetation by the stream. Unbelievable beauty! Never knew it was so nice here. Lots of rock-hopping near the stream. Got my feet wet a few times. We did not see anyone except for a group of boy scouts and a turtle.

After walking on a closed road for almost 4 miles the trail is covered with high grass. Tried to keep going but was too worried about stepping on a snake that would be impossible to see. The rains have done wonders but the trail is just way too covered right now. It's a nice walk though and would love to do it again when I can see where I'm stepping

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Very nice to hike & to get away from L.A. just for the day... Remember to bring lots of water to drink & take out ur own trash...

Trail follows a paved road for miles. Lots of deer. Very little shade, so bring lots of water if it is a hot day. You can descend into the creek after about 6 miles into the hike. Lake has receded quite a bit, and the creek is shallow but has some water. Very few people on the trail and there is plenty of parking. Day pass is $10 and there are some picnic areas at the front.

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Went with a buddy and it was a great adventure. Sat alongside the road 2 miles in and had lunch under the sun. Looking over the hillside at Mother Nature's Best. Definately do it again but this time further up.

on Crystal Lake Trail

Monday, January 30, 2017

Nice little hike. Pretty site, lake not so much. But still nice when is all packed with snow!

Sunday, January 01, 2017

This is a great hike if you want to Experience your first Snow hike. I didn't have Snow Spikes and wish I did. I did fall once at the start walking to the general store. But after I took out my Trekking Pokes all was well.

It was my first snow hike and it was so much fun. The Lake was Frozen but still a beautiful view.

We did take a detour but found the Lake nonetheless.

Monday, November 07, 2016

Great place for hiking, fishing ans relaxing, unfortunately the lake lost lots of water and its beauty because of the draught !!!! Very sad. We still had a good time and were fortunate to see couple of dears !!

I had a great time today, beautiful Lake and beautiful view.

Great time! Sorry to see how much the lake has receded because of the drought.

Monday, November 16, 2015

This is one of the lost hikes of the Los Padres, the Trail head is a little hard to find. It can be found just past the old abandoned campground. Its a short two miles to the narrows which is spectacular. About quarter mile beyond that you will find running water. Fall colors were beautiful. Definitely worth the hike. The total distance you will travel from the closed road gate is about 8.5 miles round trip for this hike. I would rate as a moderate hike, terrain is easy to navigate.

Monday, July 13, 2015

This trail is short and sweet, but I wish I could say the same about the lake. It is overgrown with algae and the water level is very low. It is an easy walk around the entire lake and right now there are nice yellow and green flowers growing near the shoreline. And of course you'll hear the music of a thousand insects.

Sunday, June 21, 2015


Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Fish canyon is a great hike for the whole family. You can adjust this hike to your need easy to just turn around at any time. Wilderness just north of Castaic Lake. Be carful crossing the stream as it can be tricky. Have fun with all family members. We took our 7 month old grand son.

This is one of LA's greatest treasures! You hike DOWN the boring asphalt road but once you actually are on the trail and hear the water gurgling to the side, big boulders, shade and you've entered a different world. In a wet year there are many water crossings but now hardly any. Because of that, wear a bug net as the gnats have multiplied. The only difficulty is hiking back up the asphalt road, other than that it's pretty much flat, filled with trees and wildlife. Hard to believe something like this is in Los Angeles County!

great river fishing awesome at night the fish glow in the dark. not to mention the night ski!!!

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