Hermit Falls Trail

MODERATE 317 reviews
#1 of 2 trails in

Hermit Falls Trail is a 2.5 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Sierra Madre, California that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
2.5 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
698 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

kid friendly

hiking

nature trips

trail running

walking

bird watching

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

From the Foothill Freeway (I-210) in Arcadia, take the Santa Anita Avenue exit and drive north to Chantry Flat, 4.6 miles.

hiking
muddy
rocky
scramble
19 hours ago

This is a good trail! You start uphill and go dow for like 1 mile, cross the river go for about 0.5 and cross again then you will hit the watering hole. This side has Way less people! Now the river is really high and can be very difficult to cross... when we started there was 15 people and only 3 people were able to cross the river... the watering hole was super high and had a strong current. Can get cold here and parking can get crowded. Only sad part was the trash and graffiti on the rocks. Will do it again!

hiking
muddy
washed out
5 days ago

Stunning after the recent rains, but the stream crossings are a little tricky with high (by SoCal standards), fast water, could be challenging for your dog who doesn't rock hop. One of those hiking canes would help, as well as a change of socks.

hiking
muddy
5 days ago

7 days ago

Came hiking on a weekend morning after the rain. The path to the waterfall has many switchbacks and is kind of narrow. With increased rainfall, it's best to have some waterproof boots since crossing the river can be difficult otherwise. Also watch out for some poison oak along the way. At the end, the waterwall is beautiful despite the graffiti taggings.

hiking
muddy
25 days ago

hiking
28 days ago

We came just after a few days of rain and there were a few slides onto the trail that had to be climbed over. There were also large cracks in the path were it looked like sections were close to collapsing. Definitely still passable, but with caution. The waterfall was really swollen and amazing, but the graffiti everywhere makes me sad.

1 month ago

there is a massive hill u walk down that winds down to a area that leads down to where they have the cutest somewhat underground cabins. the trail is super easy. the areas with the trail with the cabins looks like something you would see out of a movie. it was a small trickle of a waterfall. technically not even a waterfall. it's like only a run of water down the side of the rockwall. prepare yourself for that hill back up. you will def be huffing and puffing..

hiking
1 month ago

The hike down and up were wonderful! Less trafficked compared to Sturtevant Falls. The one draw back was the amount of gravity found in the area.... Heavily graffitied especially at the boulders where the water falls!

3 months ago

Disappointing amount of graffiti at Hermit Falls. Well trafficked trail. Nice once you get off pavement. Can take the leg off to sturtevant falls loop back on the paved trail to add another 2.5 miles or so.

hiking
4 months ago

This hike was nice until you get to the destination. It was really disappointing to see the graffiti all over the rock. It ruins the overall impact of the area because you are focusing on that rather than the rock pool area.

Parking in the Sierra Madre area can be a pain, make sure to get there early or plan to hike your way up the road before starting your hike. It definitely can add more elevation gain, distance, and challenge to the hike you are planning to complete.

Overall the scenery was beautiful, but I much rather goes somewhere else now that I have seen it.

hiking
4 months ago

Virtual Hike: https://youtu.be/Ufi15b3pKlI

What a fun and short hike! I arrived to Chantry Flats around 3PM, and there was plenty of parking available. (The drive up to Chantry Flats is quite enjoyable as well. The trail starts just down the stairs from the restroom. The trail at first is a paved road, but after less than 1/8 mile there is a sign that leads onto a real trail. You can’t miss it. The trail switches back and forth to the bottom of the canyon, where there are a few cabins, follow the trail down the canyon past more cabins and continue up a trail along the right side of the canyon. Within a few minutes you will reach a bunch of large boulders cut by the water. This time of year there isn’t as much water, but I was surprised to see as much as I did. There is an easy area of the falls to get to and hang out, but to see the main waterfall, you must climb down a set of rocks. Don’t worry, there are ropes with loops to make this easier. Once down to the waterfall, there is a nice pool of water that you can take a dip in. I was taken aback by how much graffiti and left over beer cans there are down there. Still enjoyable nonetheless. I saw a handful of people at the falls, just hanging out, and made some friends! Once done chillin’ at the falls, there is a significant climb back up the trail to Chantry Flats. Make sure you don’t waste all your energy at the falls because you’ll need it for the ascent. 700 feet in 1.5 miles ain’t a joke, but certainly a great workout, that on the last heatwave of the summer months leading into fall will have you sweating in no time!

All in all a wonderful hike and a great way to spend an afternoon!

Hope you enjoy!

Playlist for the trail: https://tinyurl.com/y9appm2e

hiking
4 months ago

Went hiking here on a Thursday morning so parking was Not a issue. after the short walk to the trailhead we walk on a dusty path until we got deeper into the forest then you see how green and pretty it is. the water flow is a trickle, but I've been here before after the rain and it was flowing and beautiful. Right now it is like "hard mud" the insects are buzzing around the mud and water, you might want to bring bug repellant. I think I swallowed a bug ha ha. it's a easy hike to the falls, please be careful the rocks are huge and smooth. I have very good hiking boots and theres no grip, so slipping is possible and the water is low. I know this is a "cliff jumping" spot but looking at the low water and seeing the rocks I can't believe people jump off this. i think if they saw what's down there when the water is low they would think twice. So easy, good hike. Wish there wasn't so much trash and graffiti but you can still see the beauty in nature. #mountaingirl

5 months ago

very nice trail. lots of shade, water was very dirty bcus of no water flow. other than that very peaceful trail

6 months ago

Short hike down on steep, cliff hugging trail but plenty of shade. Great for year-round hiking and especially in the spring time. Check out the diving pools near the end!

6 months ago

Nice place! Really recommend it

8 months ago

The hike is fairly easy and short but get there early because it shares a parking lot with a bunch of other hikes (including Mt. Wilson) and it will be full by 7am.
The falls themselves aren’t really that special and they get crowded I didn’t really care for all the graffiti. Kids will be cliff jumping, which I don’t recommend.
Not my favorite waterfall hike in the area but if you’re into jumping off of cliffs, it’s an option.

hiking
8 months ago

6-10 hike for

rock climbing
8 months ago

The trail down to the waterfall is nice. Went on a weekday and there were a good amount of people just hanging out near the falls. I don't know how people cliff dive here, looks terrifying! To get down to the pool is pretty hard although there is a rope provided.

The fall in itself is nice aside from all the tagging ):

8 months ago

It was beautiful, except the graffiti. Waterfalls were amazing.

8 months ago

Great trail!

hiking
9 months ago

Fun to get to! Has a tricky ladder at the end that you have to go down. The forest that you go through is beautiful. I just didn't like the graffiti tags on the rocks and not much to really see at the end. But in the end I would hike it again for sure.

9 months ago

nice place .

10 months ago

the trail is a lot of fun and Lush scenery unfortunately taggers got in there and ruined some of the beauty of the scenery still worth the trip but the last 50 or 75 yards to hermit Falls is very difficult and we didn't attempt it

10 months ago

Nice easy hike down to riverbed then along it to the pools. Id call it hermit pools. Saw cliff jumping into the pools while there. Amaaazing lushness around the river. 3 stream crossings.

10 months ago

Very sad to say this place has been ruined over the past 10 years or so by an influx of graffiti, trash and degradative gang culture using it as a hangout to drink and play loud (terrible) music. What a shame.

hiking
10 months ago

I’ve been here back in 2012 and again recently and it looked so different I almost didn’t recognize it. There was sooo much graffiti and trash! Very crowded with lots of young adults playing their loud music and drinking beers and trashing the place. I cliff jumped into the water last time but not this time around, too many rude people and it made me feel uncomfortable. If you do decide to do this hike, please bring a bag with you to pick up trash. It’s a small effort that could really make a difference and it doesn’t hurt anyone.

10 months ago

Fun hike, but so much graffiti and trash! Parking is difficult, suggestion use Uber.

hiking
11 months ago

great little hike to start on. narrow trails, that take you on gradual slopes. when you arrive its a little anti climatic as you are approaching from the top of the falls, but a quick scramble down the rocks can lead to great photos. dogs may haveca hard time after the falls as drops down the boulders are a few feet or more. great hike to do in conjuction with sturtvant as you can follor the right side of the river to the bridge and connect with the more popular trail.

Friday, February 16, 2018

Great place, my legs were hurting by the end of the day. I will be returning. parking permit are only needed at the starting trail, when you see the sign that says permits are sold at the store. they only take cash.

Friday, February 02, 2018

Too much graffiti on the rocks. People need to respect nature.

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