A well used trail in Pasadena will bring you to a rushing 40-foot waterfall in the heart of Eaton Canyon. A wide stretch of canyon that allows for the huge traffic of flocking tourists looking to find the waterfall. The constant flowing Eaton Canyon Creek requires a few if not many creek crossings depending on the route you decide to take. Fallen trees, dead brush and landslide-driven rocks sit at the canyon floor, but essentially moved out of the way due to the constant traffic to the falls. The weekends are as busy as can be. Weekdays will be less busy.
Parking Coordinates (paste this into google maps) : 34.176712,-118.096448
No matter how many trails I’ve hiked in Los Angeles, something always brings me back to Pasadena. Secretly, this city might be one of the best hiking destinations in Los Angeles, some of the best trails are around this area. Take Echo Mountain or Mt. Lowe for example, both Trail-heads are just a few miles away from each other and have much to offer. But today was Eaton Canyon to visit the Eaton Canyon waterfall, a 40-foot rushing behemoth with year-round flowing waters even despite the California drought.
(A side note): Inside the Eaton Canyon Nature center next to the parking lot, you can pick up some ecology brochures and trail maps. Stick around and stare at the random displays and few animals they keep there, or move on to the hike. Overall this is an easy and great hike for kids, and even saw a few young ones.
An easy beginning, hiking through the first patches of wildflowers and passing by the returning hikers.
Past the wildflowers, the trail widens up and enters under some oaks and passes some rock grottos.
Not a difficult trail to follow, but it splits paths near a bridge that can be seen from the trail. Follow the trail under the bridge and the creek.
Along the trail the sounds of different dialects were heard from the passing patrons. On the weekends, this hike is the definition of a tourist trap.
As you can see, it was difficult to catch a photo without someone in the frame. The weekends are busy as heck, if you like less people, go on a weekday.
Because of the traffic of this place, there are locations where you have to wait for children or people crossing vital sections of the trail. IF you’re hoping to hike at your own pace, count against it.
Enjoy the many creek crossings and much boulder hoping on this trail. Because it is such a wide canyon, there are many different path to take, but some required paths which makes the easiest stream crossings.
Eventually by following the hordes of people there will be a closing in the canyon. Follow the closing of the canyon and the sounds of the waterfall to reach a large rock outcropping behind a beautiful full waterfall.
Take your time enjoying the waterfall, snack-out and head back the way you came.