Horsethief Canyon Trail is a 3.3 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Alpine, California that features beautiful wild flowers 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.
This is a great, short hike down to a small swimming hole surrounded by rocks. There is some shade on the trail, but not much. When we were there (early June 2012) the water at the deepest came up to my neck. When you look on google maps Satellite view, the pool is dried out so it doesn't look like there is water year round. The hike started from a parking lot, down a dirt road and then you make a right onto the trail that takes you down about 400 ft to the water. Be sure to bring water for the hike out, as there is little shade and it's all up. However, as soon as you feel like you've had enough, you're already at the top and it's a flat walk back to the car. Pack a picnic and plan to hang out! The water feels great and there are plenty of rocks to sun yourself on. Enjoy!
This is NOT an easy hike.
Fun for kids. Got an early start around 9am today (Saturday), worth getting up early. Only saw one other person on the trail walking in. Then walking out closer to 10:30am passed about 5 groups. Would definitely do again.
Beautiful relatively short hike, although I am not sure about the 'easy' designation as I've done hikes labeled moderate with the same difficulty. Might lull people into not bringing enough water, especially during warmer months.
This is an awesome hike. If you are reading this and debating GO NOW before the temps get high and the water goes away. We got there early and only saw a few other people. Some kids in another group were jumping into the water and having a great time. When we departed to head back up to the car, we ran across about 8 other groups coming down. So if you do not want to be crowded, get there early. Also, many groups had dogs off-leash, so just be aware of that if you are bringing your own pooch.