This was a gorgeous "build your own" hike. I wanted to do more than 2.7 miles but my husband has a bad knee so can't do strenuous hikes...this was prefect because we added on another mile or so with a few more trail explorations. All of the rain made this look like we were in Hawaii vs Malibu...so green everywhere with 15+ different types of wildflowers. We also enjoyed scrambling up a few rocks for better views...but the best view was the overlook trail that hugs the coastline. You could see for miles... There were several parking spaces even though we got there at 11:00 am, so don't despair if your partner is not a morning person ; ). Can't wait to come back with kiddos. Lovely & uncrowded vs other hikes.
Lets start this review with a warning. Went on a Saturday and got to the parking lot around 11:15. It was full. It became "invent a parking place time". Didn't get a ticket and there were four cars parked where we were before we left the car. When we returned, about 1:30, I expected that the parking lot would be half empty. I was surprised to find that more cars had invented more parking places. So be warned..get to Charmlee early on nice weekend days in wildflower season. The wildflowers were excellent so it's well worth the trip. Found Catalina Mariposa Lilies on the Clyde Canyon Trail. It's a bit overgrown but worth doing the trail just for the lilies. Lots of Hummingbird Sage on the Botany Trail and nice patches of California Poppies on the West Meadow Trail near the Reservoir Trail. Lots and lots of families on the trails and everyone is really nice. Had a golden retriever with us and she was a huge hit. Finally, no view at all but ocean fog is typical of spring along the coast.
Took this trail with a friend's brother originally from India now living in Qatar. He was very impressed. Was really good to take someone on a hike that had such nice ocean views. Finally got a reasonable vista that included the Channel Islands, although there was haze. Couldn't see Catalina as it was hidden by clouds. One of these days it'll be totally clear and I'll see all the islands.
Very good place to hike in July when temperatures in the valley are pushing into the 90s. A cool breeze kept things comfortable even though the sun was a bit intense. Marine layer and any haze was gone by 11:00 when I got to the park and I expect that to be the norm for the next couple months. I took the Clyde Canyon trail and it isn't overgrown like it was a couple months ago. Didn't see a single snake this outing. Wildflowers are long gone although there was a bush mallow and the usual cliff aster.
This is a very good place to hike but there are some problems. First the park really needs maintenance. Trash was spilling out of a trash can in the picnic area, the picnic area was overgrown, and the iron ranger was stuffed with fees. If I'm paying a fee I'd like to see better maintenance. There are a few trails that are problematic. Parts of the botany trail are overgrown with difficult footing. The east side of the lower loop trail is rutted and very difficult. I suggest avoiding it and accessing the short trail to the overlook as an out and back using the west side of the lower loop. The Clyde Canyon trail through the grasslands is very overgrown. Even with all these issues the park is a great place to hike . It's all about the views. I also saw more wildflowers than I did on Sunday which suggests that the more trails hiked the more variety of wildflowers.
Excellent place for a hike. Great views of the ocean. Lots of wildflowers although I believe we missed the peak. Not as much variety as there may have been a few weeks ago. The meadow had also turned brown. It would have been much nicer green. The park needs some additional maintenance. Picnic area was really overgrown. The iron ranger was so stuffed with fee envelopes it was hard to add one more. Fortunately, the trails were in good shape.
Lovely, quiet hike with a nice variety of wildflowers and lush vegetation on a spring morning. Killer views!
Just a heads up: after a rain, the grasses will be heavy with water and will droop across the trail in a few places. Just a couple of steps into the grass and you might as well have stepped into a puddle -- bring a change of shoes if it has rained recently!