Explore the most popular waterfall 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.

Beautiful trail, easy once you’re off the paved portion, the paved area is very steep so it had a a level of difficulty to the trail in the way back. Lot’s of cottages along the path that make this the enchanted forest. Decent size swimming hole and waterfall at the end. An enjoyable hike. Many trails off this one, not always clear on the descriptions which trail they are referring to.

Great trail on a hot day. Lots of shade. Lots of water. Many cautious mountain bikers. Just a few bozos.

Awesome cute trail , can be difficult every once in a while but over all a really calm hike !

Really great hike with lots of interest along the trail - great views from the canyon rim, beautiful creek crossings, and several small waterfalls on the 8.5 mile trek. Lots of shade makes for a great trail on a warmer day. Bring lots of water (2-3 liters) - about 4 hours round-trip.

Awesome walked, loved the scenery and the waterfall was wonderful.

Super invigorating hike with lots of pretty views to guide you to the top! Beware of bugs, use bug spray, and focus on the trail because it’s possible to veer off and end up somewhere unexpected. Up to the falls is a short in and out hike, however you will have an option to go further and reach mount Zion or mount Wilson, or to chantry flats. Come here if you want a challenge but with shade during hot days!

great place to hike..

horseback riding
7 days ago

Nice place to visit beautiful easy trail
The trail itself is pretty clear and easy to hike
Be prepared to pay for parking (ticket otherwise) you need some sort of pass -
Equestrians do not visit during the weekend there will be no parking for trailers -go during the week -
There are TONS of poison oak but trails are pretty clear (so stay on it ) bring bug spray - the only down side was it’s VERY rocky for horses towards the end closer to falls -fine for hikers just be careful if you have equine friends joining -will definitely be returning with my pup for a good hike the scenery and sound of the running stream is nice .

Not the most spectacular falls in the San Gabriels (especially in the summer), but well worth the drive. The creekside trail is mostly shaded and passes come quaint cabins from the early 1900s. However, the first half mile or so down to Roberts camp is on a paved, unshaded road with about a 12% grade, all uphill on the way back, so plan accordingly.

Awwsome hike in to Spruce Grove CG. The campground has a lot of trees so it's great for hammocking. Overall the CG is clean and the outhouses were pretty clean for what they are. I still prefer just digging a cat hole over any outhouse though. There is water at camp (though the water level is low) and should be treated before drinking. Saw a few deer come through camp along with multiple squirrels as well as a small black bear (hanging your food or a bear canister is a must). Also, make sure that you bring bug spray as all of the biting menaces are out in full force.

A fun little trail with a few stream crossings that's easy to get to and easy to follow. The best part is that a majority of the trail is in the shade, perfect for a summer morning hike! Get there early because parking is quite limited and you need an adventure pass.

Great trail that is well shaded (except for the half mile before Switzer Falls). Recommended when it's hot (was >100* when I hiked this).

The trail to Switzer Falls is well trafficked with a few stream crossings. The water level is very low at the moment, but there is certainly enough to splash around in. There are a few step drop-offs and cliffs along this trail - keep an eye on kids!

Beyond Switzer Falls, the trail is far less maintained, but is still easy to follow. There are around 20 stream crossings between Switzer Falls and Bear Canyon Creek but all are easy - no need to get wet feet!

Bear Canyon Camp has a half dozen spots for a tent, about 3-4 stoves/fire pits and a few picnic tables. Great spot and well shaded. Given the low water level, I wouldn't rely on the water for drinking.

Overall, recommended trail, especially when it's hot given the stream and tree cover.

We did this to escape the heat in L.A.
Did the loop counter-clockwise from the last turnout before Bukhorn entrance. It's simply a matter of keeping a leftward tangent. Started at 5:30 pm and finished at 9:15 pm. It being July, we used a lot of repellent.
Very beautiful hike, especially with the low angle sunlight, and plenty of shade. But forget the falls. It was just too dry. As the evening sky set in, we took the PCT out of Cooper Canyon instead of the service road. It was worth it because as the trail gets up on to the rim of the canyon, you can see a lot of sky and surrounding mountains with that blue and orange colored sky. We had the trail all to ourselves.
The loop is closer to 8 miles than 6 because we took the trail instead of the service road coming out of Cooper Canyon trail camp. The map shows to use the service road, thus making it closer to 6 miles.

Awesome Trail going In all downhill, coming back all Uphill. Amazing view. Did purchace my adventure Pass.. Did the complete Loop and More Total 8.9 Miles. I love it.

walking
9 days ago

This was the first hike I’ve ever done so I am an out of shape BEGINNER. Took me about 2 hours to get down to the waterfall. Don’t be intimidated by the rope assist to get to the base of the waterfall. I was able to do it with a bit of effort. Not a lot of water but it was so worth getting down there. I really enjoyed this hike and will definitely return.

Pretty easy hike, until the hike out. This weekend was super hot so it was rough. Bring plenty of water and take rests.
My doggy was tuckered

Great hike!! Beautiful views from the ledge hiking to the second falls. The trail became very rugged past the falls on the Bear Canyon trail with downed tree obstacles from the floods to cross. Certainly a trail worth doing.

Great hike! Don’t forget your insect repellent!

My life is better for having completed this hike YALL! This was my first big “hard” hike! I finished this one solo and took me a good part of the day! Worth it just for a swing we randomly came across at some camp site! But at the peak of Mount Zion I said a little prayer and journeyed back down to sturtevant falls! I have a lot of respect for this hike and anyone who does it! Definitely will be back soon!

Definitely not easy but a great hike!

Did this hike on 7/4/18 with my wife and it can be done in 5to 8 hours depending on your pace and break times. Got there pretty early around 5:45 AM and glad we did because it was really crowded as the day went on. Did this counter clockwise up to the ski lodge then to devils back bone and up to the summit. Proceeded down to the ski hut trail and manker flats.

Beautiful views but quite windy with winds at 15 mph up toward the summit. It is a strenuous hike but the sense of accomplishment felt at the summit makes all the struggle worth it . We summited at about 10 AM. (took a 20 minute break at ski lodge to eat snacks).

If you have weak knees be prepared as the downhill is a lot harder than going up. Took us longer to get down because of the frequent breaks. The loop down is very steep and a lot of support and stabilization is required. My wife was really struggling on the way down as she has an injured knee so it took us an extra 90 minutes to go down than it should have.

Instead of a loop I would do an out and back next time and return down devils backbone to ski lodge to save my knees.

Tips :
Trekking poles useful going down
Atleast 2 liter of water as the loop will take between5 to 8 hours
Sunscreen as there are many unshaded parts throughout the hike.
If you have weak knees, Do an out and back from manker flats- ski lodge- devils back bone- summit as it is the prettier side of this hike and then take the ski lift down.

Amazing views. Good and strenuous. A must-do hike for all SoCal hikers.

Fantastic trail, mostly shade. Get there early cause parking lots fill up.

Great scenic trail! Really great for Whitney preparation. The stream running by the ski hut was flowering pretty good to my surprise. However that is pretty much the only water supply until the lodge.

small trail that goes through campground to waterfall

trail to the was hard to hike. Unsafe in one area. Waterfall was nice once able to get their.

Hiked this trial with my best friend/hubby on 6/30. We left our house at 7:30 AM (wish we left earlier) and reached there by 8:30 and started our hike through Top Notch. At around 9AM we also saw people coming down already.
we started our way at slow pace since we know it was a hard trial and dint want to spend all of our energy in the beginning. By 11:30 AM we reached Top Notch Restaurant and took a 15min break. Cooled off ourself. Sun is all out by that time and we started to the real part of the hike. We reached Devils backbone at 12:30PM and pretty much tired already (again.. we are beginners) and our fellow hikers told the toughest part was still ahead. At about 1PM we reached to the last 1mile which was a killer hike. At this point, due to high elevation it became tough to get breath and we had to take a 30sec break for every 30 steps we took. That last 1mile almost took 1 to 1:30hr but we dint give up :)

Finally we made it to summit at 3PM (6 long hours). The moments of joy !! Manu had a bit of motion sickness and felt dizzy. We took few pictures and decided to get back. Now we have to decide if we want to take Ski Hut trial to make it a loop or just come back through same Top Notch route.

Top Notch route has an option to take cable car which take down to our car. since we were worn out and altitude has got our nerved we thought we would just take the cable car. we started coming back and half way down - we both got back our breath and we felt light as ever. We again took 30min break at the restaurant and cooled off. And decided to walk back 3 more miles. It wasnt that hard coming back although we just took our own time and laughing about out first summit experience. What a sense of accomplishment !!
If you think you are fit enough, you should go for this trial. If I can do it.. You can do it too !!

tips: wear long sleeved top to avoid sunburn. Take lots of water. hiking poles are life saviors.

hiking
15 days ago

It's amazing how secluded this trail is given its location. It's also quite overgrown, so I recommend wearing pants, bringing a map, and giving yourself plenty of daylight. We decided to turn back about 0.8 miles in because we encountered a rattlesnake in the middle of the trail under some rocks. (We didn't want to deal with it on our way back down in the dark.)

This a beautiful and fun hike. One the better SoCal mountains. Going down Ski Hut trail is a bit rough.

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