Malibu Lake Trail

MODERATE 267 reviews
#1 of 18 trails in

Malibu Lake Trail is a 6.6 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Calabasas, California that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Horses are also able to use this trail.

6.6 miles
400 feet

kid friendly




horseback riding

mountain biking

rock climbing

trail running




partially paved



wild flowers


no dogs

Some of the highlights along Malibu Creek, in central Malibu Creek State Park. Malibu Creek State Park is a sprawling 10,000 acre park that protects 25-mile long Malibu Creek, the largest watershed in the Santa Monica Mountains. The creek itself is somewhat unusual in that it has cut a path through hard volcanic rock instead of the softer sedimentary rocks north of the Goat Buttes, which makes for some spectacular scenery during any time of the year. More than 30 miles of trails and fire roads are available throughout the park for hikers, mountain bikers, and equestrians. There are also a few areas to swim and fish, and many rock climbers also practice their craft here. The area used to be a country club, and some of the buildings and landscaping from that era remains to this day - including the Visitor Center and Century Lake - originally built as a recreational lake and now a unique freshwater marsh that provides a stop-over for migratory birds in the winter. The park has also been home to filmmakers over the years. Movies like "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid," "The Planet of the Apes," and the television show "M*A*S*H" were all shot here - and several setpieces from M*A*S*H are still here. This route follows the namesake of the park as it meanders through several areas of spectacular scenery. This is an outstanding example of Southern California terrain that's definitely not to be missed.

16 days ago

Clear trail to follow. Pretty flat mellow hike. Some shade. Arrive early if you like less traffic on trail. Several mountain bikes and trail runners. First time here so I’m not sure how it was before the fires. This was still a very scenic hike and will only get better as the area recovers.
MASH set survived.

17 days ago

This area was so much fun to hike! Although the recent fires have torched a lot of the greenery, there were lots of great spots for rock climbing and going off of the main trails, a nice river and cool rock formations. I’m a new hiker with an athletic background and this Trail was generally easy :) Lots it open space, I imagine it gets pretty hot during the summer. I got here around 8 am and left around 12 pm.

2 months ago

What a great hike that has all kinds of layers and adventures to it. I did the lower east loop that goes through a bunch of epic rock formations (great for rocking climbers), the former set of hit TV show M.A.S.H, and ends with the rock pool where people gather to swim and jump off mini cliffs in the wilderness. I could only imagine how this park looks when there is actually water in the Malibu creek, it was all dried up pretty much when I went except for the rock pool area.

Most of the trail is wide and flat for the most part making it very doable yet still a great workout since it's about 6-7 miles long (roundtrip).

- @justroc @just.trek

3 months ago

just loved it! was perfect for walk and jog and sights were wonderful to see!

3 months ago

Beautiful easy hike. Loved the MASH set.

4 months ago

love this place

4 months ago

Great hike for a Saturday! There is potential to make this hike up to 10+ miles. It was neat to see the old MASH filming site. Nice change of scenery throughout the hike. The earlier you go, the less people. The trail starts getting busy around 8:30. Highly recommended!

4 months ago

Great moderate hike for the whole family. Always nice to see the original M*A*S*H Site.

5 months ago

Like everyone else said, this hike has some pretty scenary but the end is a huge disappointment. I guess I should have read the reviews more carefully but you really just end up at a gate at the precipice of Malibu lake... So close, yet so far. Wish it would have ended up at the lake so I could check it out.

I would rate this as really easy. Mostly flat with one part that has a 10 minute incline you have to hike.

One way took me about an hour.

7 months ago

beautiful trail!

8 months ago

Great trail very quite and serene.

8 months ago

very nice trail, beautiful and peaceful. highly recommended place to spend time with family, hike or simply clear your mind from the crowd of the city without being far away from it.

8 months ago

Absolutely gorgeous! Great hike.

9 months ago

Love the creek and openness of trail, where there early enough to enjoy the trail in peace and quietness. Also parked outside the parking lot and save $$$

10 months ago


11 months ago

For my second hike it was easy enough for both me and my husky(on leash). We got to see the lake and made the full circle back to the entrance. That last hill to the main street gets you heart going right at the end. There was a good amount of people for the time we went (nice people) and some people on bikes. Be mindful of the horse droppings as they are all over the trials.

11 months ago

Monday, January 08, 2018

Beautiful and easy trails. But we were disappointed that we couldn’t get to Malibu Lake at the end.. you can’t even see the lake and you can’t access it. Bummer!
Along the whole trail there are many spots where you can smell the sewer. So much for a walk in nature with good smells..
the MASH site is pretty cool. Worth the effort.
We still enjoyed it after all and will do it again.

Saturday, December 02, 2017

The kids and I love hiking here!

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Parking is 12 dollars. Some people park on Mulholland Dr and walk in to avoid the fee.

This trail scales closer to easy. There's no dramatic inclines or excessive rough terrain. Family friendly!

Pretty straight forward with on and off shading. Century Lake was my favorite point of interest. The 50 ft dam can be accessed with some easy trespassing, but there's no safe way to get to the base of the dam.

The set of M*A*S*H is half way through the hike.

Unfortunately the ending is rather lackluster as you are dropped off on the tip of Malibu Lake which is gated off completely. No point to the end other than to reach it.

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Cool hike. Starts off pretty easy, and then gets a little more fun. We took our 5 and 7 year olds, and they enjoyed it, too. I love MASH, so that was fun for me and the rest of the family.

Friday, September 08, 2017

I'm going camping there soon so I'll see if I like it.

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Loved the hike and will go again for sure

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Closed today.

Monday, April 10, 2017

Hiked this trail yesterday. Loved it. Will do it again.

Thursday, March 02, 2017

Beautiful - I did it once before and it was totally manageable. But I was there last week post rain storms and a majority of it was impassable due to the water.

Saturday, February 25, 2017

If anyone went to this trail today (2/25) can you please post an update on the condition of the trails


Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Malibu State Creek

So we attempted to Hike the M.A.S.H site at Malibu Creek State Park but with the storm we had it completely washed out the trail. So we were unable to access it. The Trail leading up to the bridge is a puddle. Just to cross the bridge you had to go over several fallen trees. To cross to the other side of the bridge you have to cross a steam knee high and along the rest of the way you will have to walk through water. We went as far as the caves that are on the left of the trail and couldn't go any further unless we were willing to walk through waist deep in water.

We did get to visit the Dam and explore other areas of the park. It's definitely one of those places you can go back to and hike several trails. We got there before it opened, so we just bought our parking pass through the parking machine which is $12. If you want to avoid the cost, you can park on Mulholland and walk in. I also bought the park map on the way out, which was $2. So next time I return we can explore new trails.

Friday, January 06, 2017

The whole park is gorgeous. This is a relatively mellow hike with lots of photogenic scenery.

Wednesday, January 04, 2017

A nice local hike and not too tough for the kids. Beautiful scenery and the creek seems to have more water that normal given the recents rains. A very nice family hike.

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