5 Great Hiking Trails in the Los Angeles Vicinity

As the weather warms up, we see a rising trend of reluctant urban dwellers make their way out into the outdoors. It's no secret that Los Angeles is home to an abundance of Flora and Fauna, located right in its own backyard.

Life in Los Angeles can get hectic at times, so we've compiled a list of five great trails to get away from the city life. Grab your friends & family, some sunscreen, and get ready to hit the trail!


1. Malibu Creek State Park (Out & Back Loop - 5mi)

Only moments away from LA, Malibu Creek State Park is a great destination for a great, short, summer hike. Rated as a moderately easy hike, this trail is family friendly and forgiving to those who don't have much experience hiking. Hikers are awarded with a great swimming hole towards the end of the trail. Be advised, there are no dogs allowed. $12 parking fee required. 


2. Eaton Canyon (Out & Back - 3.8mi)

Eaton Canyon is a must-see for those living in LA. It is a relatively easy hike, with a 592 ft elevation gain. Although it can get crowded during the weekends, the 40ft waterfall at the end of the trail makes it all the worthwhile. Hikers walk alongside several streams and creeks that run along the trail, and for those who are lucky, you may be able to some dazzling wildflowers in bloom. Don't forget your bathing suit for a refreshing swim in the water pool!


3. Trail Canyon Falls (Out & Back 4.3mi)

Trail Canyon Falls is a slightly less-trafficked "out & back" trail than the previously mentioned trips above. This trail requires a slightly more rigorous trek to get to the falls. Tucked alongside rocky canyons, the falls feature a 30-foot waterfall. Swimming isn't advised, as the pools can be a little too shallow, but a quick rinse under the waterfall can be quite a refreshing treat after a 2-hour hike. Trail runners are recomended. 


4. Cucamonga Peak (San Gabriel Mountains) (Out & back - 12mi)

Located in the San Gabriel Mountains, the Cucamonga Peak is not for the faint-hearted. This trail is rated moderate-difficult, and is only recommended for those who are up for a big challenge, as well as a rigorous hike that will lead you up into the clouds (literally). With an elevation gain of 8,859 ft. and a round-trip distance of 12 miles, this excursion will require several basic necessities. To cut weight, bringing a water filter, or drops to rehydrate from the creeks and streams is highly recommended. Drinking directly from the water is discouraged, as Cryptosporidium and Giardia can easily be contracted from the water. Trail snacks high in protein are also advised, along with a light jacket for when you reach the peak. Hikers can pick up an Adventure Pass at a local REI, BIG5, and select 711's. The Visitor's Center will also have Adventure Passes available for purchase (required for the hike). (Properly rated Hiking Boots/shoes are highly reccommended).

5. Mount Wilson

Echo Rock

Echo Rock

Mt. Wilson, via the Sierra Madre's Chantry Flats, is a spectacular trail. This hike is rated moderate, and is a moderately-heavy trafficked, out and back trail. With an elevation gain of 4,200 ft., nany people use this hike to prepare and condition for tougher treks. Hikers are awarded with a stunning view of the peaks from the Mt. Wilson Observatory. Parking tends to be sparse towards mid-day, so arriving early is highly recomended. A $5 Adventure Pass is mandatory for parking, and available for purchase at select locations. Directions can be found here.