There are a few things that define Los Angeles: Hollywood Sign, Walk of Fame, Universal Studios, and hiking. By virtue of celebrity status and pressure of keeping up with healthy lifestyle, hiking has become one of the most popular things to do in Los Angeles. Luckily, city’s location and its surroundings comply with such needs and demands. But if you want to expand your experience and activity level, hiking to Eaton Canyon Falls should unquestionably top your list.
So, get ready to discover Los Angeles and hike like a local! And be prepared to feel an intense urge to hit the trail immediately.
HIKING TO EATON CANYON FALLS
Eaton Canyon Falls Trail Overview
A relatively easy hike starts at Eaton Canyon Natural Area Park and Nature Center, located just off Altadena Drive. Nested in close proximity to Pasadena, Altadena, and Santa Monica, the 3.5-mile trail gets a lot of attention from all kinds of hikers. However, not many newcomers can conquer this hidden gem in the Greater Los Angeles Area. Tucked away in the stunning San Gabriel Mountains, the hiking trail to Eaton Canyon Falls mostly remains a privilege of the locals. This might be just an advantage, considering that the place still gets very busy especially on weekends. But neither the crowd, nor a long walk in the heat can stand in the face of a 40-foot high waterfall – not a typical phenomenon for Los Angeles.
Bustling through Flat Area of the Park
The hiking trail to Eaton Canyon Falls consists of two sections. The first, a bit longer than the second one, asks for bustling through the flat, open area of the park. Hardly any tree shadows fall on a wide, dusty trail, giving you little to no relief from the scorching sun. Fortunately, the path does not present excessive physical challenges and welcomes the hikers of all ages. This part of the hiking trail to Eaton Canyon Falls is suitable for joggers, dog walker, and even visitors with strollers. As a word of precaution, make sure to stack on water, sunscreen, and head cover. The rest cannot be easier.
Hiking to Eaton Canyon Falls: Conquering Rocks
Once you reach Mt. Wilson Toll Road Bridge, the hiking gains new momentum and becomes more interesting. Growing close to each other (so, that it creates illusion that you walk into a huge, natural cave) trees with more than enough shade replace the exposed to the sun areas. Small rocks and middle-sized boulders fill the previously flat path. This part of the trail demands more jumping and climbing as opposed to the nice stroll before. Definitely, no more strollers, jogging, or running. Some water-proof shoes, though, might come in handy here, especially if you hike to Eaton Canyon Falls in spring or early summer. After rainy season in Southern California, the waterfalls often flood a good part of the trail. The rest of the year is pretty dry, and so is the Eaton Canyon Falls trail.
Approaching the first waterfall marks the end of the trail for the majority of the hikers. (The most adventures of them continue hiking to the second waterfall at Eaton Canyon.) By this time, a small crowd might have already gathered at the bottom of the waterfall. While some people test the water with their feet, others do not shy away from swimming in ice-cold pool at the base of the waterfall. Even though it gets busier pretty fast, the feeling of cool mist and relaxing sound of the falling down water makes hiking to Eaton Canyon Fall an unforgettable experience that needs to be repeated again and again.
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