nature trips


wild flowers

no dogs

trail running


mountain biking

kid friendly


This California State park is located in Los Angeles in the community of Topanga and is part of the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area. The park covers 11,000 acres stretching from Topanga Canyon to Rustic Canyon and down to the Pacific Palisades, all entirely within the City of Los Angeles, making it the largest wildland within major city limits. The park hosts 36 miles of trails and roads. Topanga State Park sits within the cliffs and canyons of the Santa Monica Mountains and boasts great views of open grassland, live oak, and the Pacific Ocean. The park offers excellent opportunities for hikers, mountain bikers, and equestrians. Popular trails in the park include Los Liones Canyon and and East Topanga Fire Road, Parker Mesa Overlook Trail, Santa Ynez Canyon Waterfall, and Musch Trail to Eagle Rock. The Backbone Trail also passes through the park. Mountain bikes are only allowed on fire roads such as Eagle Springs Fire Road Loop and Topanga Canyon Road. In the park you may encounter many geologic formations such as earthquake faults, marine fossils, volcanic intrusions, and various sedimentary formations. Many of the trails within Topanga State Park can be accessed from Trippet Ranch Area off of Entrada Road. Dogs are not allowed within the park.

We arrived shortly after 6:30 am on a Monday holiday (MLK Jr) and we were the 1st car in the parking lot closest to the main trailhead...I believe I saw 3 small lots on Los Liones Dr with street parking, however, when we finished at 9 am parking was crowded.

We did the loop counterclockwise and it was just under 4 miles to get to the Parker Mesa Overlook and even though we did this hike early in the morning we had clear views. Maybe half of the trail was a fire road There are two benches there to rest and eat some snacks. We had a bit of a difficult time finding the trail from there to finish the loop...it is located just to the left of the bench on the left. The trail back is about 1.5 miles on a narrow, steep downhill path with loose dirt and easy to los your footing so take it slow. It was about 5.5 miles and took us around 2.5 hrs to finish.

There was very very little water. However, my four kids (ages 9-13) had a great time climbing over rocks and boulders to get to the trickle of a waterfall. My 40+ chubby self even made it! I imagine that with significant rainfall....this hike could be pretty tough to navigate boulder climbing while it the stream.

A very pretty day today. Lots of ocean views and a good view of the valley side from atop Eagle Rock. A longer hike for me, but not too terrible on the uphill. At this time of year (2/17), with a 6:45am start, I had a lot of shade on this hike. I’d do it again for sure.

Amazng views.

This was a nice little trek with very light traffic even on a warm Saturday. Crane Canyon doesn't offer much shade so be ready for that if you're out on a sunny day. The Topanga neighborhood tour is really cool - it's the exact kind of unique vibe you'd expect. Ascending out of the neighborhood and back to the ridge line was the hardest part for us, the grade is very steep at points and I was carrying a 15-month old on my back. Once you're back up top you're treated to views of the Pacific and then descend into a long stretch of twists and turns in Garapito Canyon. This is shaded almost the entire way with lots of growth and overhanging branches so be prepared to do some 'duck under' lunges. We only saw one other couple within Garapito which is pretty amazing considering the millions that live within a close perimeter - it was a great little taste of solitude. We moved at an overall steady pace with a lunch break and a couple other quick stops and knocked this one out in about 4 hours.

More of a road than a trail when you start

Hiked to the view lookout this weekend and my boyfriend proposed! Was an intense hike with lots of inclines, but the view at the end and getting engaged was worth every sweat and ache. There are lots of friendly people on the hike. A guy also came over to us after my boyfriend proposed and offered to take pictures for us. Was so glad he was there so we didn’t have to take just selfies. Thank you guy! Wish we got your name.

Way too crowded.

Very nice - great vistas, big sky, trees and amazing Eagle Rock

trail running
23 days ago

Great hike
We weren’t really sure where it was going to end so eventually we just turned around and never found the so called loop.
Lots of parking available leading up to the entrance of the trail.

Great hike! Awesome views as reward!

Ran here a week after the rains and trail was pretty torn up. There was a “trail closed” sign 8 miles in that I ignored. Lots of rocks, hard on the feet. Most of the elevation gain was at the last 5 mile stretch. The best trail I never want to run again!

The single track trail to the actual cave is rather overgrown and strewn with litter. As you get closer to the cave there's a lot of graffiti and other simply creepy things (like a chain hanging from a tree shaped into a noose!?). There's also a ton of trash. Such a shame as these caves, if left alone and protected, would certainly be an amazing little treat. The single track itself is also challenging in parts and as others have suggested, wear long pants (or find another trail all together).

Not a great trail but not bad. There was tons of dog poop on the trail and very little shade. We went at 10am in January and it was still too hot in the sun for my dog. It’s 2 stars for dogs but 3 stars for people. You can hear the traffic from the 405 freeway and you can look right into peoples’ (multi-million) backyard. We went out only 2 miles so I think the city landscape lessens. But I like trails where you immediately feel hundreds of miles away from LA.

Great trail. Beautiful. Full of fog when we went. The only complaint is the app showed the trail as a loop in red. I didn't realize you have to go back the way you came until we were at the top lookout. It would be nice if it wasn't in red showing a loop. Other than that it was amazing and a lot of fun.

First time and loved it! No hiking shoes needed, running shoes are fine. Incline is slow and steady, great workout. Spectacular views of LA skyline and ocean. If I lived closer, I’d do this hike weekly!

1 month ago

For anyone wishing to help out with repairing/restoring this trail, the California State Parks - Park Champions Program - is seeking volunteers for the morning of Jan 27, 2018. Go to Calparks.org and look for volunteer opportunities at this park/trail and others. http://www.calparks.org/help/park-champions/

Nice moderate hiking terrain. mostly not shaded so bring extra water and hike during colder months. No dogs allowed on the trail.

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