Maidenhair Falls via Hellhole Canyon Trail

MODERATE 75 reviews

Maidenhair Falls via Hellhole Canyon Trail is a 5.1 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Borrego Springs, California that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from October until May.

DISTANCE
5.1 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
974 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

birding

camping

hiking

nature trips

trail running

hot springs

views

waterfall

wild flowers

no dogs

hiking
3 days ago

I enjoyed this hike, the scramble over rocks through the canyon was especially fun. It was nice to be able to see a few different landscapes on such a short little hike. Walked back and night and lost the trail a bit but since it's in between 2 little mountains it's easy to stay in the right direction.

trail running
15 days ago

Fun run from campground to trail head. Slight uphill grade all the way to the falls but easily runnable until the boulder hopping begins!

hiking
25 days ago

This hike is more about the destination than the journey as it's mostly barren desert transverse for long stretches and it grades upwards, not aggressively but just noticably enough. The hike back is better as you get a superior chance to walk through the palm groves and the slight grade down makes it more enjoyable. Lots of scrambling, rather fun. Towards the final mile or two the sudden transformations from barren desert to lush forest-like surroundings is incredible. Three groves each with an amphitheater you can hang about at, arguably the best lounging spots in all of Anza. The falls, though not currently running, is hypnotically tranquil, like something out of an eastern philosophy movie. Went both during day and as a night hike, enjoyed both immensely. Surreal during the night, even more so during the day as we had to cut through a group of cult-like church goers dressed in white robes gathered around to preach about whatever it is white robes rock climbers preach about.

hiking
26 days ago

Nice hike, mostly predictable grade for the first ~1.5 miles. Tons of cholla and a few ocotillos here and there. Trail has a few bouldering spots, with one particular area requiring an inelegant shuffle up a very slick rock (or perhaps a helping hand from someone uptrail). Falls were not running, but there was still standing water and plenty of water plants around.

1 month ago

Flat sandy walk into mountain

hiking
8 months ago

Nice trail. I went mid June when it was 100 degrees out. Not too much shade around. Very easy climb. Good enough to take kids on. Bring plenty of water and also more water.

9 months ago

Just dont forget a hat or something to shield the sun!! Cant recommend that enough!

hiking
10 months ago

We went the second weekend in March during the super bloom on a Sunday when everyone on the planet descended on the teeny town of Borrego.
We parked at the visitors center so, added over a mile to the total distance.
I loved this hike! Of course, all the flowers were amazing but, the amount of water we encountered in the desert was the big reward.
It was an extra warm 92 degrees for early Spring so, I struggled a bit (I'm 52) on the long, slow incline.
BRING PLENTY OF WATER!!
I finished off my 2 liter camelback.
Again, we started from the visitors center. I would recommend starting from the trailhead although, the visitors center is great if you've never been.

hiking
10 months ago

Really fun hike...The waterfall although small it was beautiful...Get there early to avoid crowds and bring plenty of water, especially if it's a hot day.

hiking
11 months ago

Highly recommend going out some time soon while all the flowers are blooming. I started on the trail at sunrise and i was the only car in the parking lot, but by the time I was leaving the place was jam packed (even though it was a weekday). Definitely recommend going early! You'll get the sunrise (and that golden hour light), cooler temps, and less crowds!

hiking
11 months ago

Completed this hike today 3/25/17. The wildflowers were in bloom. The winds and cool weather made the trek easy to moderate today. Im sure during the summer this trail could be difficult if one doesn't prepare for the heat and bring plenty of water. Today though the weather made this trail inviting. I almost wished Maidenhair Falls was a few miles further. The trail gets lost several times during the final leg of the hike as you will encounter several areas where you must rock scramble at the palm oasis. Stay to the left and you'll have an easy time relocating the trail.

hiking
11 months ago

Fun trail. As a newbie the bouldering near the end was a little intimidating but overall a great hike!

hiking
11 months ago

Go early! This is a popular and crowded trail.

hiking
11 months ago

Great trail, especially after all this rain. Caution: when you see the sign "riding and hiking trail" with a left-arrow, please keep right to stay on the Maidenhair waterfalls trail. The left trail is a 6-mile trip to the Culp Vally campground.

11 months ago

Very long hike, climbing, going thru the bushes .
Path unmarked closer to the falll by the palm trees.

hiking
11 months ago

Hiked this last early Fall starting around 9am. The first quarter you are totally exposed so make sure you have adequate sun protection. Around the halfway point you hit a little incline and go through some boulders - trail can be easy to miss here. It gets cool toward the last third or so of the hike as you enter the palm oasis. Hike all the way to the end and treat yourself with the waterfall. We had it to ourselves when we went. By noon groups started to to trickle and the lot was full.

hiking
11 months ago

Full lot at trailhead when I went on a Sunday during infrequent rain showers. Lots of couples and groups out to see the wildflowers starting to bloom. Managed to find the Falls to myself. If you follow the alltrails track closely you will avoid following well worn footpaths to dead ends. Enjoy the running water and fan palms as you make your way up. Lots of birds and some frogs will add music to the sound of the water. Please pack out your orange peels and everything else you pack in with you.

hiking
Saturday, January 14, 2017

Even after the substantial recent rains the falls were not flowing yesterday. It was still a very worthwhile hike with some really unique scenery, especially deeper into the canyon. I'd do it again, especially when the falls are flowing!

hiking
Friday, December 23, 2016

Worth the effort. Not running on 12/21/16, but I can't wait to gobback when it is.

hiking
Monday, November 28, 2016

Fun hike. Interesting change over terrain.

Load More