Holy Jim Trail is a 2.9 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Corona, California that features a waterfall and is good for all skill levels. 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.
dogs on leash
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 I assure you: Holy Jim Falls is a chapel in the brush.
Done it twice with a dog both times. Some rattlesnake sightings but very easy. Waterfall is great.
With the closed road lot and the parking situation, this hike turned into much longer than expected. It was just shy of 10 miles (round trip). It's a beautiful climb, with lots of great scenery. The waterfall right now is every bit what you'd expect it to be. Wear appropriate footwear because you will be crossing the flowing stream many times. We brought our dog and kept her leashed. There seems to be quite a few people that think leash requirements don't apply to them and have no problem with their unleashed dogs running up on your leashed dog. So many people are ignorant to the fact that leash laws are not just for unfriendly dogs. My dog is friendly, but when she's leashed she becomes unpredictable when an unleashed dog rolls up on her "friendly" aggressively. Nice hike, take water, take something to snack on or a lunch.
take food and water, big mistake not to.
Very fun and challenging trail. Some light climbing over boulders at the end. Since the rain there is a lot of water so make sure to take sticks or waterproof shoes. Crossed over the stream many times.
This is not the complete Holy Jim Trail that goes up to the microwave towers sitting on Santiago Peak. This is only a short portion that goes to the falls. Lots of water right now and very crowded. If you are continuing on to Santiago Peak, this is not an 'easy' hike. With the added 4 miles of dirt road, since the gate is closed, you are looking at an aproximate 20 mile out and back hike. Be careful of mountain bikers.
Gate closed till March adding ~4 miles (round trip) of hiking on dirt road. Beautiful trail, lots of water right now. Wildflowers starting to bloom, frogs adding music to the sweet sound of flowing water, and almost no trash on Holy Jim Trail! What a delight!!! Saw many families with little hikers and also lots of dogs. Even on a Monday, the parking area at closed gate was practically full.
Easy going and family friendly trail with minimal incline. Car will dusty in the drive in.
Beautiful winter hike, went on a cloudy, misty day after a season of heavy rains. lots of water and greenery. 2.5.17
I'm shocked they list this as easy... it is definitely moderate. The gate was closed so we were able to drive only a mile or so in on the crazy dirt road and deal with the mess of parked cars. Then hike to the trailhead about 1.5 miles. Lots of crossing the stream so expect to get a bit wet. I didn't realize this hike is the first part of Santiago Peak so I had actually done it last year when there was no running water. Great hike but you should know that from the blocked off parking area it is 6.6 miles. And you need an Adventure Pass.
Put that work in!
Great trail, especially a few days after a good rain. The waterfall is fun for kids to play around. When I was a kid, I used to collect newts. Beware of poison oak... It's everywhere.
Great trail - lots of people and pups. When we went the road in and out was "closed" due to the January rains - but people still got their vehicles pretty far down the dirt trail. Had to hike about two miles to the trailhead and through many running creek passings which meant soggy soggy hiking boots!
It says easy, but it was a little tricky trying to cross the water streams. We hiked this right after a big rain fall so the water was running pretty high.
Also, the unpaved riad to the actually parking lot was closed in some spots so it added another 5 miles roundtrip on top of the actually trail.
Other than those obstacles it was a beautiful and easy hike. The waterfall was gorgeous and worth the hike.
my wife and I drove up today and found the road was closed about a mile and a half from the trail head. we enjoyed the scenery and found it a fairly easy outing for a couple of out of shape 40 somethings.