Eaton Canyon Falls Hike
Summary for Eaton Canyon Falls Hike
Easy on good trail with a few stream crossings
4 Miles Round Trip
Nice hike up easy to follow but sometimes crowded trail to mostly year round flowing 40′ waterfall
This hike begins at the Eaton Canyon Nature Center and takes you down a wide fire road along Eaton Canyon wash and then on easy to follow trail into the beautiful steep walled lower gorge of Eaton Canyon, culminating at 40′ tall Lower Eaton Canyon Falls. This is a very popular hike, so don’t expect to be on the trail or at the falls alone. However, it is a great beginners hike because although it is generally easy, once you enter the gorge you have a few stream crossing and some rocky trail to contend with, which is a good introduction to wilderness trails for beginners or kids.
Directions to Trailhead for Eaton Canyon Falls Hike
Map of Eaton Canyon Falls Hike with Downloadable GPX File
Detailed Description for Eaton Canyon Falls Hike
Park in the Eaton Canyon Nature Center – no parking pass is required. The signed trail head is at the end of the parking lot. Now simply proceed up the wide fire road along the wide boulder strewn wash. It’s actually very pretty because of the plentiful alder, oak, and maple trees, especially so in wet months when the water is flowing this far out.
You will hit a couple trail junctions where an equestrian trail splits to the right, then joins back in from the right, so stay straight ahead at these junctions. After about 1 mile you will encounter another junction with a sign denoting Eaton Falls, so you obviously want to go this way.
Soon you will pass under a small bridge and encounter a small check dam in the stream, and this marks the beginning of the gorge. Normally there is some water flowing after this, and sometimes a surprisingly large amount, but in the very dry months there may be little of none, although further up at the falls there is normally some water most months.
Now simply continue up this tranquil wooded gorge, crossing the stream as necessary, and enjoy the melodious and soothing music of the lovely stream (as long as there aren’t a bunch of screaming kids or loud tourists – lol).
After about 1.75 miles mark from the start, you will encounter the carved grotto of 40′ Lower Eaton Falls. Again, because this is one of the easiest to reach major falls in Los Angeles, it is often crowded, but you may get lucky, and in any event it is something every Southern California hiker should see, if only to experience this bottom portion of spectacular Eaton Canyon. Note that above this fall is an entire series of falls, and another pristine and wild Upper Section above that where you will almost certainly encounter no one – but this is an altogether different adventure hike covered in Upper Eaton Canyon.