Southern California Waterfall Hikes
The map and table included below contain all the Southern California Waterfall hikes from the different areas covered on this site.
A beautiful waterfall is guaranteed to put a smile on anyone’s face. Although it is not well-recognized, Southern California, because of its steep mountain ranges, is blessed with literally dozens of magnificent waterfalls. Some of these waterfalls are well-known and are covered in many hiking guidebooks and on many hiking web sites. These are typically waterfall hikes that are accessible by a maintained trail. Many of those accessible by a maintained trail are also close to a parking area and thus require little effort to reach. Some are further and require some effort to reach, but because they are so publicized they are also often crowded as well. However, there are many more spectacular waterfalls that very few people ever experience.
A goal of The Hiker’s Way to discover and popularize some of these spectacular hidden gems. So while you will find most of the popular waterfalls here, many of the waterfall hikes on The Hiker’s Way truly are hidden treasures. Those waterfalls not reachable by a trail are also listed and recognized as Adventure Hikes so review Adventure Hiking page for those so noted. Note that as described on that page, some of the off trail hikes are very adventurous indeed. So please make sure your pick of waterfall hikes matches you current level of hiking ability and conditioning.
Southern California Waterfall Hikes Map
One of the facts to keep in mind about Southern California waterfalls, and our mountain streams in general, is that many of them are seasonal, and flow can vary greatly depending on season and the amount of precipitation received in a given year. Having said that, note that another important factor influencing the amount of water is the size and height of the mountain range. Taller and larger ranges receive more precipitation in general, including at times deep snow packs in the winter, and also are more likely to produce thunderstorms in the summer which can help replenish the water reserves. Many people are surprised when they find that there are many streams, and thus waterfalls, that flow year round in Southern California, and thus contain plenty of water even in the late summer and fall before the winter storm season. These are typically found in the larger ranges, especially the San Gabriel Mountains and the San Bernardino Mountains.
So peruse the map and table below and pick out one of these great waterfall hikes. You will find that the waterfall hikes contained here are provided with detailed descriptions including directions to the trail heads. Waterfalls provide necessary sustenance for your mind, soul, and body simultaneously.