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Horn Canyon Trail is a 5 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Ojai, California that features beautiful wild flowers 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.

Distance: 5.0 miles Elevation Gain: 1,922 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dogs on leash

kid friendly


mountain biking

nature trips


bird watching




wild flowers

First half is through beautiful flowers and shrubbery, but with that there are bugs and bees. At the third or fourth stream crossing there's a big clearing and the landscape changes to dense forest. Bear spray is recommended.

1 month ago

So super confusing getting to the trail head, go into the thatcher school campus, keep right take the road that says deliveries only, keep going to the right and up the dirt road, trail head will be on the left. Great hike, amazing views, following creek bed the switch backs up the hill to the ridge line. Shaded at about half way, then no more shade.

2 months ago

What a great trail. A bit of a climb but totally worth it. No bugs on the trail today. We started early and had great temperature for the entire hike. Great spots on the way up for views!

3 months ago

Great hike! I would say if you are afraid of heights bring a friend or something. A lot of the trail is a tiny path maybe 2 feet wide along the hills which make it seem like if you fall you fall forever.

4 months ago

Good elevation climb (1900ft) over short distance (5mi.) Trail keeps going but as others stated the trail is overgrown the higher you climb. Views are pretty but evidence of recent fires throughout. Thinking this would have been a more enjoyable spring hike.

over grown
4 months ago

Did this trail yesterday and really enjoyed it up until the over grown trails. Would have loved to make it up to the ridge, but I honestly thought that the over grown trail was never going to end. Maintenance on this trail would be great, views are spectacular!

over grown
5 months ago

Took this hike last week (10/12). Went to the the top of the ridge. We have done this hike in the past and had found it to be a well maintained trial. However, this time much of the upper trail was overgrown and difficult to traverse. Additionally, there was a lot of poodle grass once you trek past the pines. Would not recommend it at this time. Trail definitely needs maintenance.

5 months ago

Lots of mosquitoes near the creek but that means lot of lizards and silver frogs. Parts of the trail are a bit overgrown. I was glad I wore a hat but wished I had brought a bandana during the buggy parts.

7 months ago

Definitely do this trail in the morning. The canyon provides nice shade but it was gone on my way back. The creek crossings are pretty easy. The trail gets very steep and narrow after the 4th stream crossing and you will be in direct sunlight. But there are nice views of the Ojai valley when you get towards the top. I turned back at a campground because I lost the trail and it didn’t seem like there was anything more exciting. I didn’t notice any bees or flies like other people mentioned. Also trekking poles were very useful on the way back down. Overall, great workout

8 months ago

The gate is closed and there’s no parking if you take Sisar Road up. Go through Thacher school instead. Great hike, lots of flowers, saw a rattlesnake too.

8 months ago

The trail is so beautiful especially once you start climbing along the side of the mountain. However, this section of the trail is steep, overgrown, and has some bees.

9 months ago

Did this hike a couple weeks ago (June 2019) with a hiking pack carrying 7L of water to train. I'd say it's "fine." I completed it in 2.5 hours. Bottom line: Pleasant at the bottom with 4 creek crossings (can step on rocks/logs), steeper after last crossing. Some views as you ascend. Wear long pants for overgrowth higher up. There can be flies. Consider bear spray or a bell. Wear sunscreen / hat. More detail: Enter at Thacher School. Keep to the right and drive through. You can park in the parking lot, or there are spaces for 3 cars only (and otherwise "no parking" signs) at the actual trailhead (not far from the lot). I arrived at 8:30am on a Saturday and parked at the trailhead with one other car, and another arrived. Walk through the school's composting area. Stay to the right to get to the actual trail. The bottom of the trail is nice, wide, and more well-worn. There are 4 creek crossings with rocks or a log you can step on. There are some trees / shade. After the fourth crossing, the trail gets steeper -- and exposed. There are some nice switchbacks that give better and better views of the valley as you ascend. Trail is solid with some gravel / loose rocks. The trail gets narrower and overgrown the farther along you go (nothing impassable, but you'll want long pants). The vegetation was desert plants. A few flowers in June, but it was very dry. Toward the top, the vegetation really changes and I found myself in a field of tall plants (it almost felt like a cornfield). I stopped and turned around at what seems to be a camping area clearing. I logged about 5.4 miles. Overall, moderate hike, decent views. Some flies. No evidence of bears, but other reviews note correctly that they're in the area, so I hiked with a bell and counter assault (bear spray). Decent for training, particularly with the incline / switchbacks. For those looking for a more casual hike, the bottom is quite pleasant. I saw one person toward the top. No one along the hike. Several people around the bottom / crossings, but it was by no means a zoo.

Thu Dec 27 2018

Beautiful hike. A lot of switchbacks on the way up. & towards the half way point the trail becomes very steep. Overall recommend you go on a cool day to enjoy this beauty

Sat Dec 08 2018

Hiked the trail about to the old Pines campground and back - 5 mi round trip. Trail in good condition although lots of loose rocks in the last 1/2 mi or so to the top. Water in the creek but muddy - it had rained a couple of days earlier. Very pretty by the creek and excellent views up the last part. - Bill Barclay

Tue Nov 06 2018

I did this hike yesterday 11/5/18 for the first time. There was little water in the river. Areas were effected by the Thomas fire. Flowers were starting to grow, few white poppies. I liked the gradual elevation and steps. At the top there was a lot of loose gravel and the trail got narrow. We didn’t make it to the top. We stopped at two miles when we turned back. My left foot slipped off the trail because of the loose gravel. Lucky it was just my left leg and I was able to catch my fall with my hands. Be careful when you get higher up. There was some shade at first and then mostly sun.

Mon Nov 05 2018

Beautiful fall day!! About 80 degrees. Very warm on some of the ascent. Nice to see some water in the creek. Quite a lot of horse traffic!! It was a strenuous hike for us but reached the Pine camp! Recommend morning!! It was a little tricky to Find the trail head on the grounds of the school! Trekking poles were very helpful!

no shade
Tue Jul 24 2018

You may see lizards, frogs, many types of birds but no snakes, ticks or mosquitos! That is all good in my book. We didn’t make it to the pine grove and are unsure if they still stand.

Mon Jun 25 2018

Great SoCal hike! I started at 5 this morning and was surprised with a foggy path. The hike leads you up a ways and I was able to rise above the fog and see the other ridges peaking out from it. Drive there wasn't an issue at all, even in my little Mazda.

Tue Sep 12 2017

I have not hiked this trail to the top for at least 2 to 3 years and was completely surprised to see the camp overgrown, without running water and many of its trees cut down, but it still has lots of blue jays lol. Also the path has a lot of shrub overgrowth as you get progressively closer to the camping ground. I noticed that my footprints were the only set for at least half a mile, so many hikers may not venture up there like they did in the past. It was a scorcher of a day, and even if it wasn't, I would strongly suggest to bring at least water and a hat. There is little shade on the upper part of the trail and your constantly trekking in one direction, up. I saw little wildlife, except for finches, blue jays, rabbits and lizards, although I did see bear scat at least twice. This trail is a hidden gem and would highly recommend it.

Mon May 29 2017

The first half was pretty, with wildflowers and a few stream crossings. Don't listen to Google navigation as you get close to the trail head, the route will take you to a rocky road that is closed off. Go through the Thacher school instead, all signs say private property but it's open to people going to the trailhead. We didn't see/hear any bears, but after reading other comments I recommend reading up on best practices for avoiding and dealing with bears. Fun, challenging hike!

Fri May 26 2017

First half is through beautiful flowers and shrubbery, but with that there are bugs and bees. At the third or fourth stream crossing there's a big clearing and the landscape changes to dense forest. At this point my fiancé and I heard a distinct bear growl that made us stop in our tracks. DO NOT head out on this hike if you're not prepared to deal with bears! We did not have spray and hadn't seen anyone else on the trail that morning so we turned back. Not worth the risk!

Fri May 05 2017

Made it to the top and stopped 25ft away from a bear! Make sure to park at Thatcher, it'll save time. Not much of a view from the top (from the quick glance we got before we retreated). Beautiful views on the way up. Lots of wildflowers, bees, and mosquitos! The pine trees have all been cut down and are lying at the top. No place to set up a tent.

Tue Feb 14 2017


Thu Feb 02 2017

Awesome hike, my fav in ojai!

Mon Jan 30 2017

nice trail, beautiful views a lot of switch backs, after the third river crossing the entire hike is all incline a no joke incline I loved the hike but it was a bit of a challenge. I would definitely rate this trail moderate/streanous after the third river crossing. totally worth hiking to the pines camp site the view of Ojai Valley is amazing. make sure to pack enough water & snacks.

mountain biking
Fri Jan 27 2017

This is not suitable for mountain bikes.

Sun Dec 25 2016

Excellent trail! Went on Christmas Day and there's a creek you walk near at the start of it, once you hit higher elevation there's a scenic view of ojai. Very beautiful and verdant. Take the detour road to arrive at the trail parking.

mountain biking
Mon Sep 26 2016

Nice to see water! Variety of trail to ride and try to but some hike a bike but still great little ride or longer if you ride from Ventura like I do it makes it a lot longer ride!

Mon Jul 11 2016

Nice hike, very few people, no graffiti, nicely marked, all uphill on the way out, not much water running.

Fri Jun 17 2016

Great hike! I went this morning in the Ojai heat so it was a bit of a challenge during the incline! Def a great hike though with lots of beautiful flowers and sage as well as lizards, birds and butterflies! I went up past the Pines camp and up to the look out where the Sisar Rd meets. The flys really get to you after the Pines so bringing a bandana and sunglasses was perfect! Def will do it again :)

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