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

This trail has dangerous fall situations. Not for children

13 hours ago

Great place to hike!!!
We accidentally did the difficult course but was worth the reward at the end.
Warning for rattlesnakes. Some hikers reported one 30ft away from us on the trail but was gone by the time we arrived......phew!!!! Some narrow, sketchy areas on the tail end of the trail.

Partington Cove is a great, albeit heavily trafficked, easy stop, right off ofthe 1 on the north end of Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park which offers an introduction to Big Sur’s rugged coastal beauty and charm. There is also a riparian environment here, as the cove serves as one of the steep mountains of Big Sur’s thousands of drainages. Although it is short and good for children, the hike back up is steep. Definitely not the kind of place one would ever get in the water, and be careful of breaking waves if you decide to wander out on the rocks, especially on the far side of the tunnel. There are some great spots to explore, but the ocean is no joke! Keep your wits about you, and always make sure you can get back from where you are venturing out to!

Picturesque hike! Wow.

During snowy conditions, Yaktrax shoe chains are definitely worth it, as it gets pretty icy! You can by them for ~ $25 in the shop in Curry Village.

19 hours ago

Great hike! The waterfalls were surprisingly beautiful; didn’t think we’d see so many flowing falls and streams:). Dog-friendly. Wildflowers were plentiful. Didn’t come across cows or horses but came up on plenty of patties so beware. Gorgeous scenery even driving to the location. Can’t wait to do it again!

I have done the hike twice. The most recent time being yesterday (3/18/18) and the first time was in August a few years ago. We just had recent rain so this hike was beautiful (5 stars), but if you happen to come during a drier month when there hasn't been much recent precipitation like I did in August this hike is more of a 3 star. It was about 6 miles RT and the hike will take most people 2-3 hours plus the amount of time you care to spend at the falls. A drawback would be needing to go online and purchase a $10 permit. There's a ranger at the trailhead checking for permits and you sign in. The hike is pretty easy for the first 4 miles, but the last 2 miles is a bit steep as you walk up from the falls back to the parking area, but as other reviewers have mentioned it should be rated as Moderate for sure.

20 hours ago

Beautiful but very short hike I would call it more of a 8min walk.

Did it on a cloudy/snowy day so I didn't get the full valley view but the waterfall is amazing. Presented a challenge for sure and breaks were definitely appreciated but it's not too horrible. Just get ready for switchbacks.

21 hours ago

Amazingly magical place, especially on a nice day after a rainy season. It was just the perfect amount of challenging, and the scenery didn't let you get bored even for a minute. Go early in the morning if you prefer a more secluded hike; after 12pm this trail gets pretty busy (although, not overwhelmingly). Hubby and I actually decided to hike from the start of the Cataract Trail near the lake all the way to the beginning of Rock Springs Trailhead, and we found it to feel more complete. I'd suggest parking at the parking lot near the entrance to Rock Springs Trailhead and then walking all the way until the entrance to Cataract Trailhead. Have fun exploring!

22 hours ago

Easy enough hike, uphill then downhill, waterfall at the end is a nice treat! Beautiful views at the top!

Spent the night at bear canyon camp. Beautiful easy hike. If you plan on staying the night, check out the last campsite in the back. The spot where you pitch the tent is on a little drop off with an awesome view of a peak. Watched hawks flying around all day. Loved it.

Perfect springtime moderate level hike with a variety of terrain. There was a small creek, a little waterfall, plenty of beautiful moss covered trees, and some killer views from the top of the Jack Burgi trail (that is where you’ll find wildflowers). Every horse and dog on trail was happy and friendly. And despite being moderately trafficked, we still spotted deer tracks and bear scat!

Fun hike. The cool weather helped us keep a brisk pace, completing the loop in 7 1/2 hours. Disappointed that there wasn't much snow, which was only at the top. Winter Creek was pretty full though, which we crossed 6 times. The mule deer enjoyed watching us trek by.

Great hike with amazing scenery. The waterfall is worth the distance. It was pretty tough taking the lower trail to get back as it is mostly uphill.

off road driving
1 day ago

This place haves amazing views 5 stars for that, people go and shoot there guns at that trail and there drinking and shooting
And there not responsible people most of them are early 20’S and they never pick up there trash, there’s beer and left overs
Of the shooting all over. In top of that we observed a group shooting from the top part of the trail and bullets were fire literally in to open air
I will not recommend this place to anyone period

Beautiful hike. We did this last March. Glad we hiked in water shoes and shorts, as a good stretch of it we hiked right in the creek. Loved all the elk in the area.

Hiked up Ski Hut / Baldy bowl and down Devil's Backbone loop Sunday March 18th.

Left at 7:15AM, arrived at Ski hut at 9am, and summited around 11am. We contemplated descending the ski hut trail, or completing the loop down Devil's Backbone. After talking with several people on the summit who hiked up the backbone, we decided on the backbone. We were lucky to have great weather and a solid path in front of us the entire day. We got the job done in our micro spikes but obviously preferred with crampons. There were certainly a couple sections where you want to be extremely cautious along the backbone, and most likely avoid after a storm or it's too cold / icy.

We stopped by the lodge for celebratory beers and ended back at the starting point around 2:30pm.

Overall this climb was far more impressive than I was expecting. The entire hike was beautiful. It's awesome to have this mountain only an hour from the beach.

I'd definitely recommend going with someone who is familiar with the route or experienced in the mountains if you decide to do the bowl or backbone on the ascent/descent in the winter. Shoot for a day with a great weather window as it will eliminate alot of the risk variables.

The sun didn't hit the mountain hard until noon, which then we observed several rock and ice fall as the mountain came alive. Try to be on your descent in the early afternoon.

Awesome hike. 5 Stars!

Beautiful this time of year! Great hike and workout.

Worth the drive. I always love how few people we see. 2 people in 3 hours if you don't count the group we saw only going 0.25 miles in to take pictures and return. March 18, 2018 the river was going strong and we saw plenty of flowers and little cute red lizards.

Beautiful trail with a waterfall at the end. Have to go across the creek a couple times but there are rocks and logs. Nothing too hard!

Nice and easy stroll uphill

I did this hike today and my biggest tip is be prepared. If it's in the winter or not even entered spring, bring a snow jacket because it is COLD and possibly snowing at the top of the mountain. Bring food, electrolytes, enough water, hiking poles (it DOES help), and maps.

I would definitely take screenshots on ways to get up to the mountain and down the mountain, it helped so much when my friend and I missed some turns. If a beginner went on this hike, I'd start early. We started close to 8 and it still took us about 7 hours, not counting the hour we spent at the summit. The difficulty of this hike is high because of the TIME it takes to complete it. Like it's JUST long. SO long... I didn't experience any bugs at all, but there are PLENTY of poison oak at the beginning of the hike, so wear long sleeve and pants. I feel very proud to have completed this because it is a challenge.


Beautiful day with a lovely waterfall and a great view atop one of the side trails. Good incline. Was easy even with a little muddy conditions.

Super easy family friendly hike. The narrow 5 mile road that you take there takes longer than the actual hike. A little bit of water at the falls now. The rocks up there are super slippery so watch your lils! Fun river area to explore as well. The bits of graffiti and trash we saw were a bummer! Oh, and lots of poison oak right now!

Love it!! Best to come after the rain !!

It's 6 dollars to pay or if you're okay walking further you can park in the neighborhood for free. Hike is pretty short, maybe 15-30 minutes, but mostly uphill to the waterfall. Just stay on the main path, there's a ton of side trails that don't really lead anywhere. Waterfall is super small and there's not enough water to swim in.
I went on a Saturday and there weren't a ton of people, but if you can go when no one is there its super quiet and peaceful.
Be safe, God bless.

We parked near the trail head. Sun and snow made beautiful pictures. Creek runs on the side of the trail. We turned around half way, because couldn’t cross the river. Main waterfall is very pretty, however more people. While hiking to Waterfall was not a sole on a Sunday. Going downhill on way back.

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