Cooper Canyon Falls Trail

MODERATE 80 reviews
#18 of 146 trails in

Cooper Canyon Falls Trail is a 6.2 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Mt Wilson, California that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is best used from March until November. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
6.2 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
1295 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Loop

dogs on leash

birding

hiking

nature trips

walking

forest

views

waterfall

wild flowers

rocky

Moderate hike, go straight at fork a mile down trail, don't go left towards cooper canyon campground. Steep route from trail down to waterfall pool, use the rope. This is one of the most enjoyable hikes around the Los Angeles area. The hike moves through pristine wilderness area along a magnificent section of the Pacific Crest Trail. Fragrant pine and cedar forests loom overhead with the soothing sound of trickling water in Cooper Canyon creek just dazzles the senses. After crossing the creek in Cooper Canyon you will see a large waterfall up to the left which is accessible by using a steep trail down to a large pool at the base. Cooper Canyon Falls just roars in the springtime! Continuing on, soon you will see Mt. Williamson emerging in the background and you will arrive at Little Rock Creek, a great place to have lunch before starting the final ascent up the trail. On the way back up you will encounter Rattlesnake Spring, a lightly cascading waterfall that sounds like a soothing indoor fountain and a much needed respite as you grind your way back up to Eagle's Roost parking area.

1 month ago

One of my favorites.

hiking
1 month ago

This place is great and I just love the area. This is a year-round waterfall and water flow depends on rain season. This waterfall is easy to miss and the first time I tried finding Cooper Canyon falls I ended up at Burkhart Saddle. You take Burkhart trail all the way down to you get to the Pacific Crest Trail Junction and make a right. It is not far from the junction and can be missed. Make sure you give yourself double the time on your return trip since it is all uphill on your return to the parking lot. Make sure to pass all the campground sites and park at the designated parking area for the trailhead(You will get a ticket if you park at the camping slots). There are also some waterfalls on your way up that I believe is better than Copper Canyon Falls. You can see use trails that lead to the creek that will lead to the other waterfalls. Make sure to wear sturdy shoes if you are going to go exploring. I am also not responsible if you get hurt. Be safe...

Distance: 3.1-miles round trip
Elevation Gain: 638 Feet
Time: 1.5 hour round trip
Hike Type: Out and Back
Rating: Class 1, easy
Dog-friendly: Yes(depends on dog)
Mountain Bike Friendly: Yes up to the PCT
Kid Friendly: Yes, but return incline is tough
Parking: Adventure Pass

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gtfU7XXRhBA

4 months ago

We couldn't find the waterfall.

4 months ago

Thoroughly enjoyed this trail. The Canyon is much much cooler than the surrounding areas, probably due to the water. We didn't actually see the falls on our hike (our fault for not paying more attention to where things are), but thoroughly enjoyed the trip. The last mile hiking along highway 2 is rather mundane, but other than that, this is a great hike.

hiking
4 months ago

There are two trails and one dirt road at the trailhead. We made the mistake of heading to the upward bound trailhead and found ourselves on Winston peak! It was a beautiful day and beautiful hike. Hope you enjoy it too.

5 months ago

Great moderate hike. LA was extremely hot and it was nice to be in the high elevation where it was 20 degrees cooler. Very few people on the trail and a lot of shade from beautiful redwoods and pines. There is still water in the river at the bottom of the trail but never saw the waterfall. Maybe next time. Would do it differently next time and probably not do the loop to avoid walking on the highway for a mile at the end.

hiking
5 months ago

Beautiful hike with very few other hikers. Parked at Cloudburst Summit and decided to continue along the flat path instead of continuing on the PCT. There are two steep paths after you past the Burkhart Trail to get to the rope which leads to the bottom of the falls. Seems like the hot summer days has left just a trickle, but still a beautiful and peaceful area to relax. We tried to do the "loop" and continue back on Buckhart Trail to Angeles Crest Highway. Although Buckhart Trail is nice too, the walk back on the highway was seemingly dangerous and not as enjoyable if we had just walked back the PCT.

hiking
5 months ago

Beautiful and relatively easy hike near Mt. Waterman in the San Gabriels. Trail is shaded by the massive pines and cedars throughout the valley. Maybe it was because of the temperature (90+), but we saw almost no one else on the trail. At this time, the falls are just a trickle...but still a serene and pleasant reprieve. Some trout in the pool at the base of the falls too!

hiking
5 months ago

This hike was one of the easiest I been to.. really beautiful waterfall although it's really crowded.. and I couldn't enjoy the waterfall at all but either than that it was a nice experience. On my way back I found 2 other waterfalls and amazing views..

5 months ago

One of my favorite hikes.. beautiful and pretty cool waterfall.

hiking
6 months ago

Busy near the camps and parking, but quiet for much of the trail. Streams still running so made pleasant location for mid-hike picnic. Did the loop counter-clockwise finishing with the walk along hwy 2, which is nice except when being passed by motorcycles. Going this direction made the climb out of the canyon less steep than the single track near the trailhead.

7 months ago

Moderate hike but a little tough climbing out as it's mostly up hill and high in elevation. Loved that it was clean and not crowded at all, allowing you to really enjoy nature as it's meant to be.

7 months ago

Peaceful hike amongst some redwoods. Plenty of places for good snap shots. You'll be walking down hill most of the way there so the way back is a little tougher. There's a few easy streams to cross and you're shaded through most of the hike. Waterfall is stupidly located in the opposite direction of the one sign you'll encounter. Signs says water fall to the left... Ignore it. Continue right on burkhart trail and it's literally a few paces away.

hiking
7 months ago

All 3 waterfalls were flowing and the water feels like it was in its 30's. We ran into maybe a handful of people which was great considering how crowded places are getting in the weekend. The views are great and the different water pools make this a great hike.

hiking
8 months ago

Per my Fitbit this hike was about 3.5 miles from the start of the trail. The camp ground was closed so we had to park on the street and walk down to the camp ground which was about 1.3 miles, so total about 6 miles. I was not expecting the extra 2 miles from the car and back. The trail is a little difficult to find if you never been there, but if you walk down to the entrance of the camp ground toward the back you'll start to see signs for the trail. You can also park at the exit which is closer to the trail. There are nice big rocks to eat at and enjoy the waterfall. Definitely, take a snack or lunch!

hiking
8 months ago

Never made it to the falls. Beaitiful hike. Not a lot of people which made it very peaceful. There were several trails not sure which one was the loop I will have to download the maps so I can see direction to go. I did 6 miles out and back but would love to know the loop so I could see the falls.

hiking
9 months ago

I was expecting cool weather, so I dressed in layers. The first 3rd or so was mostly unshaded around noon so it was pretty warm, even with only a base layer on top. However, once we got to the waterfall things cooled off considerably. You could probably get away with short sleeves if you keep moving, but we stopped for pictures.

There's still a lot of snow on the ground, particularly on the return leg toward Buckhorn campground. The trail got quite narrow and icy which added to the difficulty a bit. The creeks are flowing strong which makes for a spectacular waterfall, but also 2 potentially wet crossings. Be sure to bring waterproof high-tops.

The scenery was great: lots of redwoods, lots of ladybugs, and the constant sound of trickling water. Worthy of 5 stars once they can clean up all the fallen trees and the ice melts.

hiking
11 months ago

Really nice loop I made the whole loop.

hiking
11 months ago

Really hard hike in the snow. I'm a healthy mid 30's who works out all the time. Lots of snow on ground which made it amazing. But really hard going up hill for more then half the hike. Should have done clockwise rather then counter clockwise loop. Scenery is fantastic. Highly recommend. Wasn't able to find the waterfall. Snow might have blocked it.

hiking
11 months ago

It's a great trail... although to get to the waterfall it can be tricky if it's your first time going. We didn't see no waterfall signage. If you take down the fire road you will come across some restrooms. Once you pass the restrooms about 2 miles in, the trail divides but you have to be on the look out to take the trail that is on your right going downhill. You then are going to reach an area that requires you to cross the river stream ... you will then continue the trail about .2 miles to reach the waterfall area. To get down to the waterfall it can be challenging and dangerous.. you have to climb down some rocks. Someone did place a rope to facilitate going down and up. Hope this helps! Enjoy and be safe :)

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