hiking

views

nature trips

walking

dogs on leash

wild flowers

birding

wildlife

trail running

kid friendly

mountain biking

no dogs

waterfall

forest

river

camping

The Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area or SMMNRA, is a United States National Recreation Area containing many individual parks and open space preserves, located primarily in the Santa Monica Mountains of Southern California. The SMMNRA is located within the greater Los Angeles region, with two thirds of the parklands in northwest Los Angeles County, and the remaining third including a Simi Hills extension in southeastern Ventura County, California.

Great hike and views. Wasn't very crowded either.

hiking
3 days ago

Great hike with family. Good incline, total hike felt more than 3.2 miles. Shade on lower part of trail. Beautiful views of the ocean!

Great hike, bring and carry water though.

Great hike. Lots and lots of snakes guys. Be careful

I love this place “ Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail”

Nice views. Go early.

Dogs are allowed but be aware there are coyotes. I was with my daughter and two dogs. A coyote came up behind us and I think he was eyeing the smaller dog. Be careful!!

14 days ago

I thoroughly enjoyed this hike. Challenging but doable with spectacular views. Looking forward to doing this hike again!

This was a fun hike. I left at 320ish in the morning and made it to the peak right before sunrise for some awesome views. If you go at night make sure you're comfortable with walking through spider webs, because it's pretty much spider webs all the way up. I had to wave a stick a stick in front of me the entire time.

Beautiful cliff views

Awesome hike! Be sure to go counter clockwise. You get the shade going up hill.

Scenic and historic- good incline!

Scenic and historic!

hiking
16 days ago

This route has three sections. King James Court ( a street name) to the top of Dead Cow/China flats trail. Top of Dead Cow into China Flats itself. China Flats up to Simi Peak. We left at 7:30am and out by 10:15 am on an 89 degree high day. Always good to start early out here and bring plenty of water when it's warm and more when it's hot. Ok for dogs if they are experienced hikers with proven (reiterate, proven) time over distance and elevation. If not, leave them home. You can always shorten this hike and just go to the top of Dead Cow (which is what this trail is locally referred to from King James Court to the first top out before you go into China Flats and return. Great views. Not sure where these guys are telling you to leave from Cheseboro Parking lot. You'll be miles off course. Leave from the cul-de-sac at King James Court or alternately from the map they provided.

Great hike with the family!

A great hike for when friends and family are in town visiting. That being said, if you're able and wanting to put in some more mileage elsewhere, you can get much better views that aren't as crowded.

I really enjoyed this hike. However, the grotto was actually hard for me to find! When you get to the bottom of the ravine, there’s a wide open shaded space. From here, it was unclear where to go. I tried two ways. To the right there is a small trail. I followed it for about a mile but it was overgrown by tall grass and seemed to never end. I circled back and went left from that open area. There are lots of rocks here. It didn’t seem clear that I was on a trail. Then suddenly there are large boulders. They can be challenging to climb but if you go up to right, you can more easily navigate down. Eventually you’ll see the grotto beneath you. To get to it, you have to go up to the right and scale more rocks. This then brings you back down to the ground level with the grotto! Woo! I got a little lost getting back out. Watch out for poison ivy!

I haven't been hiking in a while, I joined my friend Yvette today and we had such a great time on this trail. Seeing the house ruins and waterfall and the view of the ocean made our day.

Very challenging hike on the accent for the top 2 miles. Trail is straight up, washed out and deeply scarred.
Much of the trail is covered by tall growth. Watch for poison oak in the waterfall areas. Some cool land marks to see though.

hiking
1 month ago

Definitely MODERATE, not easy. Very pretty but lots of rocks so watch your step!!

Definitely on the moderate side, not easy. It's August so it very warm and there is very little shade, and the waterfall is bone dry. There are several moderately steep climbs and some rocky terrain where I needed to concentrate on my footfalls. The hardest part is definitely the first hill, it's the longest and steepest. If you can conquer that one, the rest will seem easy. There are enough flat spots between the climbs to catch your breath and get your heart rate back down a little. All in all a lovely hike and a great workout. I will absolutely be back in early spring, hoping to have an actual waterfall.

A beautiful trail with amazing mountain and ocean views.

Nice shaded hike. Relatively unmanaged so expect shoes and socks full of stickers. Some cool weird sculptures at the entrance. We went all the way down the back side of the hill but not much to see but some homes. I gave this 4 stars because it’s a good shaded hike for the middle of a hot summer day when you just gotta hike.

Tuff trail the elevation is a teal thing

The beginning of the trail to the waterfall is easy. If you decide to continue up the trail to the left you’re at an incline until you reach the Deer Valley Loop. That’s another mile-ish loop and then you go back down the way you came.
There isn’t much shade on the trail, only when you reach the abandoned structures along the way.
It’s really woodsy in some areas with streams, and there are lots of birds & lizards. Overall very beautiful, and quiet on the harder trail.

Fire road!

A little harder than moderate at some of the road diversions. Warm and sunny! Loved it. You can see the ocean from some spots.

This was an awesome hike. the views are great and even the "non-view" areas toward the back half offer entertainment.

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