Holy Jim Canyon Trail [CLOSED] is a 10.8 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Corona, California that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Length10.8 miElevation gain2,559 ftRoute typeOut & back
Dogs on leashkid friendlyHikingMountain bikingNature tripsWalkingBird watchingRunningForestViewsWaterfallwild-flowersWildlifeRockyClosed
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Getting There

Note: As of December 2020, Holy Jim trail is closed to rebuild the trail. Most of the trail was washed off the mountain in the 2018/2019 winter storms, and a good chunk of it is buried under 20 feet of gravel. It will be quite a while before it opens again, as the trail has to be completely rebuilt. Trabuco Creek road past the forest gate will remain closed until October 2021. More information here: https://www.fs.usda.gov/recarea/cleveland/recarea/?recid=47628 This may be Orange County's most popular family hike despite the washboarded road leading to it. Nature was profaned here by the swear words flooding from the mouth of "Cussin' Jim" Smith or "Holy Jim" as he was renamed by tightlaced government surveyors who mapped the canyon in the early 1900s. Another bit of history marks the place: the last wild California Grizzly -- an old bear named "the honey thief" -- was killed at the mouth of Trabuco Canyon after robbing beehives here in 1907. Heavy winter rains are essential to a pleasant journey. Along the way, you will see many small cascades and cross the stream several times before you reach the split where the main trail ascends to the Main Divide Road to the left and the trail to the waterfall shoots off to the right. Watch for poison oak as you scramble over the last quarter of a mile to the twenty foot falls. This may not sound like much, but Holy Jim Falls is a chapel in the brush.

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

The road journey is half the adventure. The road to the falls parking lot has potholes that eat trail bikes and washboarding that will make you sing like a jaw harp. Please go no faster than 20 mph: flying rocks from your tires can seriously harm others. From Interstate 5, get off at El Toro Road. Head north on El Toro to the point where the road forks at Cook's Corner. Take the right fork (Live Oak Canyon Road) past O'Neill Park. A quarter mile past Trabuco School, you will pass over Trabuco Creek. Turn left onto the dirt road. Some people park here and hike in: this adds 4.45 miles and 840 feet to your hike. Most continue on the road for another 4.45 miles and park in the Holy Jim lot. Though washboarded in parts, the road is usually passable for most passenger cars. The trail ascends the canyon on the left side of the parking lot. Trail guides are available from the Traubo Ranger District or at the trailhead.

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Reviews (364)
Photos (465)
Recordings (229)
Completed (1,926)
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Reed Thompson
Yellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarDecember 12, 2020
Closed

went on it a while ago there was an unhinged elderly man living by the trailhead there threatening us that the army was doing "blasting work" back there and no one was allowed back there. Said he'd call the cops on us if we went on the trail. Got more of a feeling he'd do more than just cite us by the way he was snickering

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Charles Bauknecht
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarNovember 24, 2020
Running

Been to the over 20 times in the last 15 years, miss this trail! It was always my go to trail for training for ultra when I needed some long climbs. It does sound like it has been severely damaged and will take a while to recover. Respect the signs and stay out!!! Grow up kids!!!!

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Tressa Shea
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarNovember 13, 2020
Hiking
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Michelle Johnson
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarOctober 14, 2020

Sorry folks I messaged the forest service and their response below shows the dire condition of the trail due to the fire and then rains. Hello, the Holy Jim trail is no longer there. Most of it was washed off the mountain in the 2018/2019 winter storms, and a good chunk of it is buried under 20 feet of gravel. It will be quite a while before it opens again, as the trail has to be completely rebuilt. Trabuco Creek road past the forest gate will remain closed until October 2021. Forest Service Shield Jeanna Smith Admin Support Assistant Forest Service Cleveland National Forest p: 951-736-1811 x3237 f: 951-736-3002 jeanna.smith@usda.gov 1147 E 6th St Corona, CA 92879 www.fs.fed.us USDA LogoForest Service TwitterUSDA Facebook Caring for the land and serving people

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Andrew Garcia
Yellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarJuly 30, 2020
HikingClosed

My family has enjoyed the trail many times over the years, but we have not been up there in a while. Found it still closed today. Based on the type of gate and signage, you get the strong impression that they never plan on reopening it. Bummer.

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Kymm Arbiso
Yellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarJuly 11, 2020
HikingClosed

Crazy giving tickets when let ppl out of jail for much worse! Thankinh Gov Newsence & Plandemic is bologne! Open already, its still good for hicking 2 yrs later for Lord Sakes! U can hick up north where fires were & Not the 1st fire here, ive lived in Tustin & orange hills (by toll), for most my life, now! Open back up, newsome doesnt know anything from his pulpet-hes a Cabal Puppet keeping us locked in w/testing No cases/deaths (1 man in late 80’s), for a Month Now! Wakeup ppl... its a shame~

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Gretchen Radwill
Yellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarMay 10, 2020
HikingClosed

Really wish this would reopen. If we had researched we would have seen that someone got a citation last week. We were at the entrance doing some dog rattlesnake avoidance training and when finished we thought we would walk a little. I really didn’t think it was a big deal to walk along the tree lined road....we were not in any damaged areas, but alas got a $130 citation for walking a 1/4 mile down the road.

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Oscar Tempora
Yellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarMay 1, 2020
Hiking

I had hoped to visit Koontz's stage. As I approached the trailhead, I began to cough and get a fever. Good thing it was closed, I could have been killed! Thanks, Gov. Newsom, for saving me from my own foolishness! You rule! Back to the basement I go. Please sound the horn when I may come out.

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Tyler Brett
Yellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarApril 27, 2020
Hiking

Trail is closed. Went on it today and received a citation for trespassing.

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Mark Chass
Yellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarJanuary 29, 2020
Hiking

They just told me that the trail is closed for at least another year.

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Mark Johnson
Yellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarDecember 22, 2019
OHV/Off-road drivingClosedRocky

Closed

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Talin Astourian Espinoza
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarNovember 9, 2019
HikingClosed

Definitely still closed. We tried today.

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Mario Duenas
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 29, 2019
Hiking

Does anyone know if this trail is open now, I use to offroad and hike?

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Wes Northern
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 28, 2019
Hiking

Had a blast! With all the rain a few weeks ago.

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Dino Katsiametis
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarDecember 1, 2018
OHV/Off-road driving

Had a great time exploring here. Especially after some good rainfall.

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Tammy Rodriguez
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMay 28, 2018

Great family hike. Lost a pair of Maui Jim prescription glasses today, though. If found, please call Jason at 714-910-4101.

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Christopher Bifano
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarApril 29, 2018
Hiking

Nice hike. Great little falls at the end

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Michelle Macgregor
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarApril 28, 2018
Hiking

Incline trail. I grade this trail moderate/hard. We parked on street that led to trail, why drive? The views were okay, the leg workout was good. Keep in mind the trail is full of uneven ground, holes. If your okay with the incline being most of your trail, this is for you! Wish I could post trail pictures for you, don’t know how though.

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Sheilas Bolka
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarApril 28, 2018

Gate is closed 2miles before parking lot and notice posted saying Emergency closure April 20th through May 18th, 2018. I’ll try to post photo of sign warning $5,000 fines for being in area.

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Alex Garcia
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarApril 18, 2018
Hiking

Awesome Hike! Kids loved it and Mother Nature Gave us a lot of shade along with some nice breeze through the openings of the canyons. Kids will Be Kids, bring extra socks and shoes, A Good possibility they will purposely splash crossing the creeks.

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Anthony Tran
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarApril 17, 2018
Hiking

My primary concern was getting my Scion xB up to the trailhead. I left early in the morning and drove a slow 10 mph but it managed! Decent amount of water on the falls.

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KARMEN D
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarApril 8, 2018

Really enjoyed the hike. Shady and small creeks to cross made it very enjoyable. The car ride to get there was bumpy but also fun. Not a difficult hike even for small dogs.

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Vishal Mehta
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarApril 2, 2018
Hiking

Great Hike! Just make sure you have the right foot wear. Some small streams and rocky areas to cross. We took our jeep all the way up, Make sure to Air down on the bumpy ride all the way up to the parking area. So, beginner Off roading & Hiking in one short trip! =D A must for local Hikers!

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Anadallas Bizzell
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMarch 25, 2018

Great trail. We ended up having to park 2 miles from the trail head so we ended up with a 7 mile hike. Still very beautiful!

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Kathy O'Connor-Phelps
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarMarch 18, 2018
Hiking

Short but sweet. Would be a fun hike to take visitors.

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Kris Gragson
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 16, 2018
Hiking

Got their early and was drizzling rain. Gorgeous hike. I really enjoyed it! You will cross a small stream several times but you wont get your feet wet. They say this is a popular trail and I can see why. I recommend hitting it early to beat the crowd.

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Brandt Daniels
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarFebruary 25, 2018
Hiking

It was fun but to get to the start of the trail it takes four miles of off road driving and an extra quarter mile walk. While on the trail, there is a stream and there are areas where you have to cross the stream while walking on rocks. Since the trail is out and back, there are lots of people walking back and forth so if you are walking through a small, narrow area, you have to watch out. At the end of the trail, there is a waterfall but it’s probably not as big as you’re expecting. I feel like in order to get to said waterfall, you have to be careful, and really climb on rocks and over the stream. You can have children and dogs on this trail. At the beginning of the trail, after the extra walking, they have a wagon of water bottles you can have only asking for a small donation.

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G U
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarFebruary 20, 2018
Hiking

Nice nature hike. Diverse plant life, particularly enjoyed the scent from fig trees and sound of croaking frogs in the late evening.

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James Y
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarFebruary 16, 2018
Hiking

Drive in is funner than the hike.

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