Chiquito Trail to Chiquito Falls is a 9.1 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Lake Elsinore, California that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, running, and mountain biking and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Length9.1 miElevation gain1,571 ftRoute typeLoop
Dogs on leashHikingMountain bikingRunningForestRiverViewsWaterfallWildflowersWildlifeRocky
Description
Waypoints (6)
Contact
Tips
Getting There

When you think of hiking in Orange County, you don't usually envision dramatic waterfalls. But during the spring, there are a number of wonderful seasonal waterfalls that are just a hike away. One of the best is Chiquito Falls. This trail requires an adventure pass.

California Travel and Tourism Commision, P.O. Box 1499 , Sacramento, CA, 95812-1499, Phone: 800-862-2543

Watch for rattlesnakes, especially when the temperatures rise. You'll need an Adventure Pass for parking.

Directions from Lake Elsinore, CA: Travel southwest on Highway 74. The upper trailhead is at the east end of Blue Jay Campground (off Long Canyon Road). The lower trailhead is off the San Juan Loop Trail at the parking area across from the Candy Store on Ortega Highway (Hwy. 74).

Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (679)
Photos (1,556)
Activities (688)
Completed (1,242)
View user's profile page
James James Hwang
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarApril 17, 2021
Hiking

It was not a lot of people but no water and it was hot. No shade in trail so start early morning.

View James's activity
View user's profile page
Linda Kieding
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarApril 12, 2021
Hiking

Be careful of poison oak - there is a lot of it. Falls are dry. Beautiful flowers, beautiful views, and almost no one on the trail.

View Linda's activity
View user's profile page
Ellen Forte
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarApril 12, 2021
Hiking

Lovely trail and comfortably challenging hike, but cut short by a massive Red Diamond Rattlesnake at about mile 2.5. Around 8:15 am. Be careful!

View user's profile page
Brian Olson
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarApril 7, 2021
Hiking

Rattlesnake about 3mi in, big guy. Otherwise, nice hike, getting warm around 11:30, go early. Falls dry of course

View Brian's activity
View user's profile page
Jenny Doss
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarApril 4, 2021
Rock climbing

Rocky in parts but a great moderate trail. Still no water but flowers are starting to bloom in spite of the lack or rain.

View Jenny's activity
View user's profile page
Joy Shaikh
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarApril 1, 2021
Hiking

Pretty nice

View Joy's activity
View user's profile page
Sun _Walker B
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMarch 30, 2021
Hiking

First time at this fun and challenging trail. Adventure pass needed for parking in lot. A lot of spots avail. Bathrooms and water avail at trailhead. This particular trail is up and down to the falls and back. Great challenges and a beautiful day to be out. Saw one hiker all day. Perfection. And he was super nice to. Great chat. This trail is mostly single track with very minimal rock scrambling in some sections. Fun trail. It is great for ages 12+. Mountain bikers/hikers and runners would enjoy this trail.

View Sun _Walker's activity
View user's profile page
Brian Olson
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMarch 25, 2021
Hiking

I was pleasantly surprised. The trail was fun, easy to follow and was true to it's "moderate" rating. I'm a thru hiker and this was my first hike back recovering from surgery. I am admittedly a trail snob (hey, I hike the JMT every year), but I enjoyed it very much. Did it twice this week (M & Th), saw a total of 4 people (in one group). There are sections of shade if your hiking in heat and there are some nice views. On the negative, if you follow this trail guide, the west loop parallels Ortega Hwy and you can see/hear the cars. I may just go back the other way next time. Oh, and the falls are dry, bummer.

View Brian's activity
View user's profile page
Nathalie Tabila
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMarch 20, 2021
Hiking

Did the loop with a group of people. It’s nice for all hiking skill levels. Perfect for family activity without exhausting everyone. It gets hot on the trail, so go early and bring lots of water. I will be back to do the full 9 mile trail . Bring sunblock too, not too much shade on the trail. There are cars you hear while walking the loop, so you aren’t completely lost in nature. But like I said, this type of hike is good with friends and family. Views are decent to take pics of.

View Nathalie's activity
View user's profile page
Vincent Li
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 20, 2021
Hiking

It's dry but still beautiful. bring good shoes as there's rocks on trails

View Vincent's activity
View user's profile page
Carol te Velde-Nutt
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMarch 19, 2021
Hiking

Simple. Easy to follow and well marked. You cant really get off trail. Lots of oak and scrub brush but that’s Cleveland National Forest for ya. Nature still at its best. A nice breeze down in the canyon but it’s already getting warm. Bring plenty of water if you go any later in the year. Easy to park. Not many people. A nice shift from my usual hikes. Didn’t make it to the falls but no doubt they were not flowing.... a nice hike for an early morning though.

View user's profile page
David Coe
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMarch 13, 2021
Hiking

Beautiful trail, especially the loop with all of the beautiful oaks. We went after 3 days of rain and were disappointed to find no waterfall. But a great hike and a wonderful hike!

View David's activity
View user's profile page
Brooke Coe
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMarch 13, 2021
Hiking
View Brooke's activity
View user's profile page
Von M.
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 13, 2021
Hiking

Great views! Still no water at the falls, but the growth was plentiful and flowers are starting to bloom. Incline was gradual and enjoyable. Highly recommended.

View Von's activity
View user's profile page
Michelle Johnson
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 13, 2021
HikingGreat!Rocky

There is light frost on the trail if you start at 7 am or earlier so start out with warm gear and gloves .Minimal water in creek and sorry still no water at the falls as of 3/12. Trail is in great shape not muddy. Excellent views as you climb up and around the mountain toward the falls.saw a mountain biker coming up as I descended (can’t imagine why that trail is any fun for them given the rocks).

View user's profile page
Hannah Kersse
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 12, 2021
Hiking

great hike full of rocks and greenery the entire way. there was also a great view of the mountain range. it started raining a bit while we were out there but made the experience even more fun. there were a few creeks at the bottom of the hike. at the turn back point there was a waterless waterfall, but still great to see all the rocks!

View Hannah's activity
View user's profile page
Mark Fisher
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 12, 2021
Hiking

Falls were dry. Continued for more than a mile past the falls through some nice oak woods lining the stream that goes to the falls. Very pretty.

View Mark's activity
View user's profile page
Jaz Livingstone
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 8, 2021
Hiking

Beautiful hike! Waterfall not currently active

View Jaz's activity
View user's profile page
Gabrielle Marie
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 5, 2021
HikingGreat!

no water at the falls....inclines all the way...beautiful views. for whatever reason this one hurt more than Sitton Peak. went weekday ...trail was empty...I logged over 10 miles on the loop!

View user's profile page
Linda Kieding
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 1, 2021
Hiking

Beautiful hike! No water in the falls, but still pretty with its ferns and smooth stones. Gentle incline; however, I needed to watch where I was going due to stones in the path - I’m a bit of a klutz and didn’t want to twist an ankle. Beautiful oak trees along the creek, and beautiful views from up above. We started the loop at the bathroom side of the parking lot, but wished we had started on the other side, where the trail map is, since the prettier part was the part on the bathroom side, and it would have been nice to end with that beauty. Saw only one couple the entire time. I will definitely be doing this hike again! For some reason, the app had issues partway through, so only the second half of the hike is recorded here.

View Linda's activity
View user's profile page
Lisa Potter
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 1, 2021

We did about 7 miles of this 9 mile hike and loved the beautiful views of rolling green hills with white boulders scattered about. So nice not to see houses on every hill. Steady elevation gain makes for a decent but not too strenuous workout. Trail is uneven and a tad overgrown but still easy to follow. Little water in the creek with no recent rain. The loop section was heavily trafficked but saw only a handful of hikers on the Chiquito section so very peaceful. Good trail head parking with restrooms and the Candy Store across the street sells the Adventure Pass you need to park.

View user's profile page
Susan Goodley
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 27, 2021
Hiking

No water at the falls, but nice trail conditions.

View Susan's activity
View user's profile page
Eden Hoang
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 27, 2021
Hiking
View Eden's activity
View user's profile page
Bobby Kubik
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarFebruary 21, 2021
Hiking

This is a great hike for all skill levels, its alot of elevation, however its very gradual, when i went there was no actual water in the falls so maybe go after it rains

View Bobby's activity
View user's profile page
Xiaokang Zhang
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 20, 2021
Hiking

No water at the fall as of 02/20/2021, nice view tho.

View Xiaokang's activity
View user's profile page
Vicki DuVal
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 15, 2021
Hiking

We went on a cloudy and breezy day, so the weather was perfect. Steady decline and inclines. Not many people on the hike, and absolutely no water in the falls. Will be back again after some rain.

View Vicki's activity
View user's profile page
Andi Garavaglia
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarFebruary 14, 2021
Hiking

Great hike! We’re just getting back to the trails after a month plus away from CA. This was a perfect reintroduction. Not too hard and not too easy. Would recommend taking the loop toward the road first bc that is filled with car noise. And don’t expect a waterfall, come back after the next few good rains!

View Andi's activity
View user's profile page
Cassandra Davis
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarFebruary 10, 2021
Hiking

Completed in 2019 with MS. Recording it to capture completed trails

View Cassandra's activity
View user's profile page
Hal Nordlin
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 2, 2021
Hiking
View Hal's activity
Showing results 1 - 29 of 679