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Nicholas Flat Trail

MODERATE 148 reviews
#1 of 4 trails in

Nicholas Flat Trail is a 6.9 mile lightly trafficked loop trail located near Malibu, California that features a lake and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round.

Distance: 6.9 miles Elevation Gain: 2,047 feet Route Type: Loop

hiking

nature trips

walking

bird watching

running

beach

lake

views

wild flowers

wildlife

no dogs

Beautiful trail in Leo Carillo State Park that takes you from the beach to the mountains. Nothing too steep or technical, and you'll be rewarded with amazing views. Be sure to check out the wildflowers here when they are in bloom.

hiking
13 days ago

This trail will make you sore—some steep uphill and downhill portions! Didn’t see a single other hiker, had the trail to ourselves. Pack a picnic for the flat part at the top with incredible views! This trail has it all: great workout, amazing views, low traffic. 10/10

hiking
1 month ago

I enjoyed the trail. The first half was borderline hard for me. Nice to see the vegetation coming back after the fires. Around the pound a lot of blackened trees with green leaves. I thought it was pretty cool.

hiking
bridge out
bugs
over grown
rocky
2 months ago

hiking
3 months ago

It connects all way to the pond from the beach. No shade. Snakes. Mtn lion scat. Great workout. Views excellent.

hiking
no shade
over grown
3 months ago

Fun trail into some dry Malibu wilderness. There’s a cool old rusty bridge to cross and a weird scum pond. The section just before and just after this first fork is really steep. Once you’re passed there it’s easy. Really overgrown toward the end and the quails in the bushes all sound like rattlesnakes. Didn’t see any snakes luckily just a couple suspicious fallen branches.

hiking
4 months ago

awesome

hiking
4 months ago

I hiked most of the trail yesterday. Had to turn back about 3.5 miles (per my Fitbit) in because I scared a rattlesnake into rattling. There is a bit of overgrowth and I didn’t see it until I heard it rattling. It scared the heck out of me. However, it was nice to see all the growth after the fire. The beauty of this hike is that after the hike, you can take a plunge in the Ocean.

hiking
4 months ago

They’ve done a great job clearing the path. Still some overgrowth on the far loop but still manageable. Great hike and very beautiful. Lots of

hiking
no shade
over grown
rocky
4 months ago

hiking
4 months ago

The trail is currently being cleared and the team is almost to the top of the climb so conditions are good...much better than recently reported by others. The climb is steep in parts and looks very different than before the fire.

hiking
bugs
no shade
over grown
scramble
5 months ago

Went on a Sunday mid-afternoon after it had just opened. After a mile the trail is really overgrown and it becomes hard to tell if you’re sticking to the right path. There were also tons of bugs and bees so I’d wear a long sleeve and pants even if there’s no shade. After the second mile, it becomes harder to tell where to go unless you spot the neon-colored markers. Plus side is that you always have views of the ocean.

hiking
5 months ago

It’s going to be hot! Trail was overgrown Father’s Day weekend. Lots flowers still. Great hike and water in the lake at the end. Talk to the rangers. Bring lots water. Great views of ocean. And I got off trail and found a geocache and survey marker very cool.

hiking
5 months ago

Trail is now open. Trail signs, bridge and wood bench at the pond have not been repaired. Trail is overgrown in places requiring some route finding, but enough traffic recently that footprints can be followed when necessary.

hiking
7 months ago

This is one of my favorite training hikes. Easy access and a decent workout (with a full pack). How much longer will this trail be closed?!

11 months ago

Tried going here and it’s closed still!

hiking
Mon Sep 03 2018

Hot, steep, and exposed, but beautiful! If you’re hoping to escape the typical Malibu crowds and get a solid workout in, this is a great place to hike. You can pop over to the beach after and jump in the water to cool down. Just know that it’s not casual.

hiking
Wed Aug 15 2018

Steep climb but well worth it! The trail is exposed and no water available on trail so go prepared.

hiking
Sun Jul 29 2018

Beautiful trail! We ran into no other hikers either the entire hike. Its a hidden gem of Malibu.

hiking
Sun Jul 29 2018

So my girlfriend and I hiked this one today. We hike at least twice a week between 4-8 miles each hike. This one was definitely not an easy one. To add to it we kinda took a wrong route before around the campsite and up some little trail of about 2 miles. Wasted energy and end of July heat was so amazing. Lol. Overall it’s a great hike with beautiful reward at the end. The pond had water btw. It’s a bit of incline for the first 2.5 miles and totally worth it. Not for beginners though. We loved the solidarity cause no one is hiking this trail. We were the only one there. Probably cause it hard with no waterfall reward at the end. Would do it again.

Mon May 28 2018

Am always surprised more people don’t hike this trail. Even on the weekend, there is just not a lot of traffic on this trail. Great vistas in the beginning and solitude for the rest of the hike. While not a difficult trail in terms of technical hiking, it’s quite a bit up, up, up for a while. This is not a beginner hike.

hiking
Mon Apr 23 2018

Great trail. Loved it. Not many people on it when I was hiking. Beautiful views.

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