Explore the most popular waterfall trails near Clayton with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Don't be like us - check the weather beforehand so you don't end up hiking here when it's 100° outside

Not the most scenic hike I have done. I hiked during an extreme drought, I was disappointed to find out that the waterfall were completely dried out. The last part of the trail is extremely steep, a hiking stick can really come in handy.

Great hike. Highest place I’ve gotten to in my backyard

really lovely and wonderful changes of elevations and sceneries

By far my favorite trail this year. I took the Hetherington Loop both ways to get off the fire road a bit. No real waterfalls left, but the creek was still moving a little bit. I stood beside it and it reminded me of the Calm app. Even with the shade, it heats up quickly, so take lots of water and start early. I finished at 11 AM and was sweating pretty good.

I did the loop clockwise as others suggested. Wonderful views as you start ascent. Love getting off the fire road and onto single track. I saw a doe with her two youngsters, turkeys, and lots of lizards. There were some loud talkers and bicyclists early on, but once you get off the main trails, it quiets down a lot.

It’s a challenge on a hot day.

Great trek for my abilities.

Great views and definitely a fun hike. The loose gravel can be rough but well worth the time.

hiking
2 months ago

Really beautiful hike. I took the the Hetherton Loop up and back to avoid the Donner Creek fire road.
6.1 miles out and back.
1200 elevation gain. Moderate with some tough rocky steep areas.
Best I feel in spring or after a rain and not too muddy.
Will definitely do again.

I love it! Lots of shade and the trails are beautiful.

Great hot summer evening hike. Falls are still running but not for long!

Very nice hike but be warned - Middle Trail and Back Creek trail are infested with ticks at the moment. They await on every blade of grass overhanging the trail. Proceed with caution and check for ticks often.

Great trail. Very steep in sections. Good workout if done quickly clockwise

Beautiful, at this time of year the creek is a little dry but get views and still some water

loved this trail! nice changes in elevation, beautiful views and waterfalls. there was a lot to look at and appreciate and it was a nice length that felt challenging but doable.

hiking
3 months ago

It’s a beautiful trail, tons of wild flowers and small animals. Unfortunately one part of the trail is full of ticks!

While this is a lovely trail, but the parking access has been badly abused. Users have been very disrespectful to the neighborhood. Please access this trail from the Mitchell Canyon Gate and parking lot. The trash left behind, the blocking of driveways and numbers of cars are making it likely that permit only parking will be implemented.

hiking
3 months ago

Beautiful hike! Much of it was shaded, and the terrain wasn’t too difficult.

The creek was running pretty low after a dry week, but all of the flowers were blooming and it was a beautiful hike. Hiked on a sunday and were able to park on the street without a problem.

hiking
3 months ago

Beautiful hike. Made it to the trail head (or dead end of a residential road) pretty late morning, but it was still cool enough out that we weren't boiling throughout the hike. Starts out quite mellow, would recommend doing clockwise/going left when you approach the split for the loop, contrary to how the app directs you. Despite the steep bits, little kids were still doing this trail so it's not terribly strenuous. Great views, overall would do it again!

The counter clockwise route is a more scenic way to start the hike and it's the route I picked. There is a good amount of incline throughout the hike, but during the first half it seems to be broken up nicely. I didn't start to get tired until we started the incline at the falls loop. The falls incline got a little annoying, probably because I expected there to be very little left and there was still a bit left until you got midway in the falls loop. The trail also gets tighter on the falls loop and sections get steeper without much grip under your feet. A walking stick would be helpful on the waterfall loop, but if you aren't too clumsy and have decent shoes you will be okay without one, although I wished I had mine for that section. There were lots of cool wildflowers and the sound of the falls were nice probably because we went late April. It was a pleasant hike just go prepared. If you are out of shape I could imagine this is a hard hike. If you are somewhat active this is definitely a moderate/hard hike depending on the weather. You don't want to do this hike on a warm day in the afternoon. The waterfalls are nice, but dont expect anything spectacular. It's just nice to hear the sound of water and see the surrounding greenery.

hiking
3 months ago

Completed today to accomplish a early morning hike. Truly rewarding morning experience... very pleasant and filled with greenery... Moderately difficult- doable with kids. There is section which needs more effort to climb otherwise a beautiful hike. You will walk alongside of a creek most of the time and the sound from the stream will give you a soothing effect

hiking
3 months ago

This hike is a mini version of the Mt. Diablo waterfall hike. It will save you about an hour of hiking and also eliminate the “Second” elevation climb if you are getting tired and don’t wish to complete the waterfall hike. See my review on Mt. Diablo waterfall hike for more details

hiking
3 months ago

This hike was nicer but not what a hike should be like. First 2 miles were on a dirt service road. It was pleasant to walk but not much to see the first 2 miles. ONce you get into the single track that the hike became more like a “Nature” hike. There were several nice waterfalls but nothing over 5 feet drop. The water is refreshingly cool to dip your hat in and to cool your feet. The last aspect of the hike was on a ridge coming back. The view was nice but after 15 minutes the view is the same. Definitely a hike to do in the spring or after rainfall due to the highlight of seeing little veils or waterfalls. The running streams was great to see and hear as well. Bring lots of water if you go in the summer since it gets hot in Clayton, CA. There are nice rest spots along the streams to eat lunch or snack. Please remember to carry out what you bring in.

Beautiful hike with tons of falls, especially after a rain. Take care when walking the trails with high grass in the lowlands of the mountain...countless deer ticks.

Great waterfall hike

Started counter clockwise and ended up doing a figure 8. Best to start out early, as it warmed up pretty quickly (and parking filled up by the time I left). Some parts were a bit on the steep and rocky side. All in all an excellent trail.

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