Eaton Canyon Falls

Pasadena, CA
Length: 4.50 mi.
Type: Out & Back

About This Trail

[Total: 1    Average: 5/5]

Eaton Canyon waterfall is one of the few year-round waterfalls in Southern California. It is at it’s peak in the spring right after several rainstorms.

The trail starts just past the Nature Center, which has it’s own nature trails (great to visit with toddlers). The Nature Center has flushable toilets if your little ones are squeamish about using the outhouses. Inside the Nature Center are also natural exhibits, taxidermy animals, and some live animals (snakes, spiders, insects, etc). They frequently offer nature programs as well. Building hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday.

Due to it’s ease of access, this trail is quite popular with local hikers and school field trips. I highly recommend going early in the day, especially on weekends. I rate this a moderate trail due to the length.

The trail starts at the end of the parking lot, just beyond the outhouses. At the bottom of the first small hill is the first stream crossing; during high water years you will actually need to cross water! If there is no visible water yet, do not be alarmed as the 2nd stream crossing will give you a better idea of how much water you will see that day. At this point in the trail you will turn left, following a multi-use fire road towards a bridge. Just before the bridge the trail diverges; in recent years there is a sign indicating to go left, down a slight hill towards the creek bed. The trail then follows the creek within the canyon until it reaches the waterfall, including multiple stream crossings, several up/down hills, and several rocky sections. It is very clearly marked, but when the water is lower you can take the more challenging path of walking through the stream bed. Beware of rattlesnakes.

In more recent years the pool beneath the falls has filled in with sediment, so you can wade almost all the way underneath the falls. Watch for falling rocks and be warned that this area is subject to flash flooding during especially strong downpours. Climbing above the falls is prohibited for day hikers.

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Trail Features

Stroller friendly No
ADA accessible No
Water fountains No
Bathrooms No
Pet friendly Yes
Nearby convenience store Yes
Camping Nearby No
Emergency support
within 5 miles

Trail highlights

Creek / River, Picnic Area, Shaded Hike, Visitor Center, and Waterfall

Lots of stream crossings and a gorgeous year-round waterfall.

Trail Contributor

[Total: 1    Average: 5/5]

My name is Nicole Dominick, and I’ve been hiking with Hike it Baby since May 2016 with my daughter. She is now 4.5 years old and has hiked over 400 miles! She has been carried for most of those miles, but we enjoy every journey. We were both born and raised in Southern CA but now live in Colorado Springs, CO.



Trail Map