Los Liones Canyon and East Topanga Fire Road

HARD 492 reviews
#2 of 46 trails in

Los Liones Canyon and East Topanga Fire Road is a 10.7 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Pacific Palisades, California that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round.

Distance: 10.7 miles Elevation Gain: 2,483 feet Route Type: Loop

hiking

nature trips

trail running

bird watching

forest

views

wild flowers

wildlife

no dogs

A moderately difficult hike in Topanga Canyon State Park. Lush greens and beautiful views make this trail a hit! A 7+ mile hike from the Pacific Palisades to a popular overlook in Topanga State Park. The first part of this hike - the Los Liones Trail - is one of the most lush riparian canyons I've ever seen in the Santa Monica Mountains. It's gently graded, moderately shady, and definitely worth a look even if you have to fight crowds. Afterward, the trail meets up with the system of fire roads in Topanga State Park and makes a relentless ascent to Parker Mesa (1525ft). On a clear day, you'll get amazing views of the Santa Monica Bay, and often inland as far as the San Bernardino Mountains.

hiking
1 day ago

Great hike. Hard. Great views. It’s worth to hike all the way up to Mesa overlook.

hiking
1 day ago

It's a typical LA city hike. Not a hike hikers would call a hike! If you take away the idiots that like to play loud music, the groups of sissy boys that like to use the f-word, lots of tits and ass, and all the people with dogs even when there are several huge signs that say, "No Dogs" then it's OK at best. I won't mention the overcrowding on the trail. Good thing is the police were up at the 1st overlook giving tickets to all the fools that had dogs. I'm a dog lover but there's a reason why domestic pets shouldn't be on certain hiking trails. One is disease from their poop and the other is the really stupid owners let their dogs run loose and they chase wildlife. There are mountain lions in these hills. The 1st mile is close to being a hike, the rest is walking on a dirt road. Amazing how many people that live in LA think rules don't apply to them and have no respect for themselves or others.

hiking
2 days ago

You need stamina to keep going through this long hike! But it’s beautiful!

21 days ago

Overlook is awesome

hiking
1 month ago

Probably my favorite spring hike in LA. Beautiful today because overcast. So green from the rain. Did Los Liones to Parker Mesa Overlook and the extra Topanga Fire Rd track down to the Topanga Canyon sign and back out via Los Liones. Our health apps were saying longer than 10.7miles, but know they aren’t totally accurate. Is 10.7 correct? This hike is hot when sunny because little shade, but go early and it is one of the best!

hiking
no shade
1 month ago

Love this hike, mostly for its cardio. After the mile or so of wooded, in-the-mountain terrain, it gets super exposed to the sun on the fire road. It's steep for a few miles until you hit Parker Mesa. Nice view of the ocean. I've seen a few snakes up here. You can also find solitude in this hike as it's more difficult and less people take on the challenge.

hiking
no shade
1 month ago

This trail has a ton of great views of the coast and the city. It’s very popular so there are almost always a ton of people there, but everyone is nice and along for the ride. There’s barely any shade so it’s not great for dogs, but it’s doable. I love having my dog off-leash but I wouldn’t recommend for this hike because of the traffic.

Terrific hike. Strongly recommend as you approach the trail head to go left through the drainage basin and do rabbit hole up first as others have described. Would be treacherous to come down. That part lasts a couple miles, it’s difficult, and overgrown, but it’s fun. The rest of the hike is moderate.

hiking
bugs
no shade
over grown
rocky
scramble
2 months ago

overall, I really enjoyed this hike, it was a great challenge with lots of elevation gain and great views. What I did not enjoy, however, was the portion called Rabbit Hole. If you are hiking alone or with younger kids, I DO NOT RECOMMEND DOING RABBIT HOLE. it was extremely steep and slippery due to loose rocks (I had to slide down on my butt or risk falling for about 1/3 of it), very overgrown and I actually got lost at one point because the trail was not clear. Not fun when you are hiking alone. So if you do the loop counterclockwise (which I recommend) , when you get to Parker Mesa Overlook I suggest going back the way you came. don't do what I did and take some sketchy goat trail through the mountains alone.

2 months ago

this Trail will forever be one of my very favorites. it has great Lookout points that look over the Pacific Coast Highway, the Pacific Ocean, downtown LA, Peaks at some Hollywood homes, and yet the path you are on makes you feel like you are so far from the city. this Trail makes you feel like you're in the desert and jungle at the same time. comparable to Runyon Canyon and its difficulty level however I find Runyon Canyon to be far more overrun, touristy and parts of the path are paved which just gives me less of a hiking feel. there are public washrooms at the bottom of the trail and there's public parking along the street leading up to the entrance. I recommend wearing hiking boots or Runners with thick treads due to the loose stones and uneven surfaces. I have seen rattlesnakes small lizards and many birds while hiking. it takes roughly 35 to 45 minutes to reach the first look-out spot where there are benches to relax and take in the view. the next section of the trail has no shelter from trees so this can be a little more strenuous. often you will see hikers, runners and people riding mountain bikes. everyone I've met on the trail has been very friendly and from all over the world.

hiking
2 months ago

Mayne the view is tight asf and the hike up was good too definitely recommend

hiking
2 months ago

My first hiking trail in LA. I have been there for two times. But just realized that I didn’t finished the full trail and we only hiked like 4 miles. Nice Malibu view on the top and good work out. No shade tho

hiking
no shade
rocky
scramble
3 months ago

Beautiful hike. We did this loop counterclockwise saving Rabbit Hole as our last few miles. With tired legs it was a bit sketchy on the descent. Lots of small rocks making it slippery. Might go clockwise next time getting the uphill scramble of Rabbit Hole out of the way.

hiking
3 months ago

This is a great trail. We went last weekend. First weekend right after the rain we had here in LA. It was beautiful to see so much greenery. I do recommend heading up early. There was a lot of people heading up as we were coming back down. Noon was the busiest. Other than that, I would totally be back there again.

hiking
3 months ago

Best hike in LA

hiking
3 months ago

Fantastic views of the snow covered peaks behind LA. Absolutely spectacular day for a hike.

hiking
4 months ago

Love this hike! Challenging and great ocean views at the same time :)

Excellent hike

hiking
4 months ago

Another amazing trail Malibu has to offer with great views. Plus it’s very rewarding ones you’re at the top.

Crowded. Long, long lines of people on the trail. Very congested.

Nice view. Please take water with u

5 months ago

We did this loop counterclockwise. This is a very tough trail but very rewarding. There is one portion where you barely can see the way and it is very steep, potentially dangerous. Not for kids or elderly. Make sure to take some hiking shoes and plenty of water. There are no water fountains along the way. Make sure to plan enough time. If you are feeling adventurous then this is a great hike!

hiking
7 months ago

Fairly doable trail. 2.2 mi to the overlook, then downhill all the way back.

hiking
7 months ago

Creds- Have AllTrails Pro. 8 Nov 2018, 11.2 mi hike, 2,464’ el gain- followed AllTrails exactly. Designated parking at Trailhead. Arrived 9:am Thursday morning no parking issues. Started counter clockwise - recommend going clockwise. Why? Last mile shoe skiid down- no way runnable. Also no view. Go clockwise for great views and run ability. Loop at the half way point in good condition. Liked the hike since lots of great views, trails in good condition, benches for lunch breaks, and easy parking.

hiking
7 months ago

One of the most lush and scenic hiking trails that I have done in LA. The trail is well maintained and has a steady incline and decline for the most part. The first mile of the hike is more of your wilderness style of hike with the terrain being a bit rocky, and then it opens up to a wide, shadeless pathway with constant views of the beaches and ocean. Go the extra couple miles and make it to the Parker Mesa overlook! It's about a 7 mile round trip (out and back). Great hike to walk, run and also mountain bike on! UPDATE (2/5/18): I finally figured out how to make this already awesome trail an actual loop! So when you get to the Parker Mesa Overlook (the overlook that is after the bathroom), descend down the pathway in front of the left bench. Take the pathway down and you will soon find yourself in a rugged and more isolated adventure. I would really recommend wearing hiking shoes for this as simple running sneakers/fly knits will slip on loose dirt and erosion here. The trail has overgrown branches and brush that arch over the pathway making you feel like you are a bit of a mini forest. ALSO if you are going to do this trail I would HIGHLY SUGGEST that you research it first as it's very easy to get lost at certain points and finding yourself being attacked by branch bushes lol. I had downloaded an offline map on the All Trails app (I upgraded to the Pro Version, just $20 a year and so worth it so that you don't get lost). This trail is a straight shot back to the trailhead where you will find yourself going down and up. UPDATE #2 (3/18/18): If you want to take a more strenuous but shorter & more direct route to the Parker Mesa overlook, then take the pathway that is in your left upon walking through the Los Leones trailhead sign at the trailhead. You will know you are going the right way if you are walking pass some concrete and a tunnel. The trail swiftly ascends upwards before leveling out a bit. Taking this route up was quite a workout and the trail itself is nothing like the wide fire roads that people typically take to the different overlooks. It's steep, rugged, and isolated making it more of an adventure. Parking: There is free street parking at the trailhead.

hiking
7 months ago

Decent hike. If you’re going to do the loop I would recommend going clockwise, starting with Rabbit Hole (the West portion of the loop), as it is steep and better suited for ascending rather than descending. Keep in mind about 70% of this trail (including out-and-back) is fire road, mostly open and exposed to the sun. So if you’re looking for a more traditional trail-like setting this may not be the one. Good that it’s close to town though. Great workout, and nice views too.

hiking
7 months ago

Really great hike, the views are amazing and the incline is a bit challenging. I wish there were more signs to tell you how far you've traveled but over all great trail.

hiking
7 months ago

This is such an amazing trail. It’s long enough for a great workout with beautiful scenery. My top favorite.

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