Switzer Falls via Gabrielino Trail

MODERATE 562 reviews
#5 of 202 trails in

Switzer Falls via Gabrielino Trail is a 4.3 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Mount Wilson, California that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
4.3 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
725 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

kid friendly

birding

camping

hiking

nature trips

walking

forest

partially paved

river

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

bugs

rocky

This is a relatively easy hike into one of the loveliest sections of the San Gabriel mountains. The hike meanders back and across the stream running down the spectacular Arroyo Seco Canyon. The stream is lined with oaks and alder, with the water cascading over granite into mirror-like pools. The hike travels high above the 50 foot high Switzer falls, then drops back to the stream, where hikers can double back to stand at the base of the falls. After seeing the falls, travel down stream to the intersection with Bear Canyon, and travel up this spectacularly wild, steep walled canyon for another half mile or so to enjoy its wonders. More adventuresome hikes can continue up Bear Canyon for 2 miles to Bear Camp.

hiking
7 hours ago

Great hike! We ended up going all the way over to the bear canyon camp ground and back! Great views and good walking trails.

Tips: bring a map and not your bicycle! There is no service anywhere and you will have to carry your bike....

7 days ago

Miles:5.2
Elevation:750ft
Duration: 2-3 hours
Level:easy -moderate
Dogs allowed on leash
Please bring your adventure pass to park.

When you arrive to the Switzer falls sign off the highway you will see a small road near the bathrooms. Go down that small road! There is plenty of parking down at the bottom. Start at the picnic tables. You have chances for a nice clean bathroom down at the bottom when your starting your hike. Cross the bridge and start down the paved road. The road ends about 1mile in but this trail is well marked and is very easy to follow.

This is a great hike to take your kids 6 and up. The views are beautiful. There are plenty of water crossings which makes it fun for the kids.
Your in shade about 80% of the trail but there is a small part with full exposer. We had people bring trekking Poles for the water crossings. There isn’t a lot of water there right now but enough to enjoy the views. When you get to the park where there is no shade “scream Hello!” As loud as you can and you can hear your echos bounce off the mountains! That was fun! When you get down to the bottom of your switch backs there’s shade again and your almost to the waterfall.

The waterfall doesn’t have much water in it but it’s still beautiful.

It was fun! Over all a perfect sized hike for us with dogs and kids!

Have fun! stay safe! Keep your dogs on a leash! Bring enough water and snacks, and leave no trace of trash!

hiking
20 days ago

Easy trail to follow along. Make sure head down(left) when you get to the fork. I personally found it on the easier die but the sun is draining on a hot summer day. Not many people on the trail when I went but the heat help keep people home. Snuck up on a deer grazing on some plants on the trail. Not a lot of water in September so don't expect much when you get to the falls.

hiking
28 days ago

Very nice moderate trail, very shady except for the uphill part. One of my favorites for sure.

hiking
1 month ago

Just a trickle of water at the falls but otherwise the views are spectacular of the surrounding mountains. Saw a variety of different birds, plants and trees. It was hot but most of the hike is shaded thankfully.

hiking
1 month ago

Do not go anytime after September! The only thing you’ll see is a trickle of water that is supposed to be a waterfall. The water is green, dirty, and gross. This hike was more about the journey than the destination at least that’s what we had to say to ourselves in order to convince ourselves that the hike wasn’t a total waste.

hiking
1 month ago

Took a beginner hiker and her dog and we had a blast! The hike provides great views with a couple stream crossing and at the end is a great little waterfall and pond to cool off in! Wasn’t too crowded either. Definitely recommend if you’re looking for a fun afternoon hike!

hiking
2 months ago

I’m just starting to get into the world of hiking & camping, this was the first trail on my list & I really enjoyed it! I decided to go in the late afternoon (started hiking around 5) & enjoyed really nice shady areas & beautiful views of the mountains during the second half of the hike. There’s a ton of beautiful greenery & wild flowers/plants, & also ran into a few lizards along the way. The inclines & declines are nothing to be worried about, just be prepared to take a bunch of pictures. I recommend taking the narrow road down towards the larger parking lot, as the incline up after you’re done would be a brutal trek to your car. As a beginner, this hike was nothing too difficult. I will definitely come visit this trail again soon!

2 months ago

Wonderful ! Most of the hike is under beautiful trees. There’s only like 15 minuets under the sun. The water is cold and perfect for the summer

hiking
3 months ago

Fantastic trail, mostly shade. Get there early cause parking lots fill up.

hiking
3 months ago

I did this hike with my family including my 3 kids. They were brave and finished the hike, which was tiresome on the return because of the incline. Alot of poison ivy and some small snakes along the way. Weather was great, and trail was busy for the most part.

3 months ago

Great hike. my kids loved it and my dog enjoyed it aswell. Hike wasnt to hard. There is shade for most of the hike.

3 months ago

Great hike in the summer. The tree cover makes it cool. But watch for poison oak of the trail.

hiking
3 months ago

One of the best hiking trails! part of the trail is shadowed the other part is up and down but so narrow! just keep in mind you need to purchase a daily pass before you get there if not you might got a ticket! have hiking shoes because all half of the trail you have water and you need to cross the water but thew view and the waterfall is amazing!

3 months ago

There were quite a few bugs but the view of the mountains was beautiful.

hiking
3 months ago

What a beautiful area! A stream running through the entire walk leading up to a small but lovely waterfall. Decent elevation, inclining slowly but surely. Lots of tree cover so you're not baking in the sun until you get very far along the trail. Wonderful hiking trail.

hiking
4 months ago

Get a parking pass! Make sure you drive all the way down to park near the start, saves time. Great sceneries, shaded trail for about half the the way. Clear running water most of the trail. Water fall is nice, you can go into the base of the waterfall when water is at a high level. 10/10 would recommend.

4 months ago

So beautiful, we went first thing in the morning & it was perfect. So fun to explore! We found both waterfalls, it took us about 4 hours but we did get a little turned around & took our time to stop when we saw a pretty view!

4 months ago

Fun to walk. Great for beginners.

4 months ago

Beautiful magical fairy land

hiking
5 months ago

love it

5 months ago

Amazing trail. Best if you have water resistant shoes. Sad the people leave trash all over the place, but the NPS does a good job, as always, keeping it nice.

5 months ago

We loved it !!

hiking
5 months ago

Love it definitely going back our furry babies love the adventure

5 months ago

this was a really nice hike but if you're going to go to the big waterfall after the smaller one make sure you are in shape and you have friends with you because it's slippery and it can be dangerous

5 months ago

Loves this hike. Took us about an hour, we didn’t quite get to the falls because we got lost. Sometimes we couldn’t find the right path to take. But I absolutely loved the views. It was fairly easy.

hiking
5 months ago

Great shaded hike with multiple water crossings. Can be packed.

5 months ago

Was really busy but the trail was easy and a nice walk.
I would definately recommend carrying on up the waterfalls to the biggest 1. had the whold place to ourselves for around an hour in the middle of a Sat - was wonderful!

hiking
5 months ago

Had a great time, took my dog who was absolutely pooped afterwards, will definitely be back

hiking
5 months ago

Easy trail! A little bit harder, but manageable, if you go all the way up and around to the falls. Make sure to hike along the right side of the first waterfall you come to and keep going. The second waterfall is the 50ft one about an 1/8 of a mile further.

I shot a bunch of video on this trail and compiled it into a vlog, called trail mix. This is episode 3!
You can check it out here: https://youtu.be/-5Acb-3FSm8

PS: Here's a playlist to bring with you, inspired by this trail: http://sptfy.com/1US5

Happy hiking!

Best,
Eric eyelove

Load More