Los Angeles Hikes

The Enchanted Forest of Pasadena

Reportedly haunted and very dreary, the canyon next to the popular Echo Mountain hike is rarely visited. The trail, an old passage of what the water tunnel workers took back in the day is both unmaintained and disappearing throughout the years. To get to the Enchanted Forest one has to pass by the old Cobb Estate, a once summer escape until the owner died in 1939. In the present day, only the driveway, gate and concrete structures remain of a once luxurious summer escape home. The hauntings stem from the dark and noteworthy history behind the estate.

History behind the Cobb Estate:

The land for the Cobb Estate, a 107 acre plot, was  purchased by Charles H. Cobb in 1916. In the following years he built a grand summer home in the foothills of Altadena. The summer estate soon became his permanent residence when he died in the house 1939. In his will he wanted the house and land to be donated to the Scottish Rite Cathedral in Pasadena. It late became a retreat home for the Sisters of Saint Joseph until the Marx Brothers acquired the house in 1956. Sadly, during this time, the once beautiful summer home was dilapidated version of what it once was, housing many criminals and delinquents within it’s walls.


Home of Charles H. Cobb. Circa 1930.

The house was then demolished in 1959. The steps, driveway, gate and concrete foundations of the estate still remain to this day. The apparitions are said to still linger around the property as well.

Entering the Enchanted Forest:

Parking Info located at bottom of blog.

The hike begins by entering the gate of the old Cobb Estate. Walk through the entrance and you will probably be passing by many hikers who have been hiking the Sam Merrill trail to Echo Mountain. We hope to publish a video on the hike soon located here.


Follow the decaying asphalt driveway that once led to the Cobb Estate. Do not leave the driveway path, even as you see “trail” written crudely to your right, this is the path to Echo Mountain. You will soon begin to notice various pieces of the concrete foundations.


The decrepit driveway and foundations.

After an easy 5 minutes, the driveway quickly turns into a large dirt path with a uphill slog.

The hike is mostly exposed as it heads into the canyon, bringing a sunhat might be wise, but it is not needed. The next thing you should see is the Cobb Water Reservoir, which is gated with a huge rusted roof you can’t miss. Look for a path that hikes up the hill right past the reservoir. Then take a small but noticeable trail that levels out after taking the trail up the small hill, it is not easy to miss, it is directly to your right after a noticeable water pipe.


Notice the reservoir and the small dirt path hiking up the hill. A small path to the right levels out after hiking up less than half of the hill. It then heads into the shaded enchanted forest.

You are now entering the Enchanted Forest, hike as long as you choose into the secluded forest of Pasadena. The trail faintly follows up the canyon and is amazingly hidden from the public, a real treat for those looking for those fall vibes.




To access the Cobb Estate entrance, one has to park at this Address: 572 E Loma Alta Dr. Altadena CA

The Cobb Estate entrance can be seen from the parking area.

Parking is free, but closes at 10pm. Signs indicate violators may get towed.

1 comment

    • Maria Ceja on 01/26/2017 at 12:39


    Hi my name is Maria Ceja and I’m trying to organize a hike for our boyscouts by Summer time or sooner . And I was wondering if I could get a map of trails that our boys could hike that are around 5miles there and back , would greatly appreciate if any information could be send to me : 3535 Denver Ave ,Long beach, ca 90810 THANK YOU

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