Escondido Falls, Malibu, CA
When Escondido Falls is flowing strong, it is flat out one of the finest waterfalls around Los Angeles.
This 3.8-mile round trip hike begins with 0.75 miles uphill along Winding Way, a paved road that passes extravagant Malibu residences. Do not let the blacktop deter you. The waterfall is well worth the unconventional start. After gaining 200 feet, the road heads downhill and you will arrive at a wooded park that is open for everyone to enjoy, Escondido Canyon Park.
Take the dirt path to the left next to a sign that reads “Edward Albert Escondido Canyon Trail and Waterfall.” The trail descends through a field of fennel and mustard toward a thicket where a small creek flows. Cross it, and make a left turn headed upstream into Escondido Canyon. The trail widens and remains fairly level as it passes through forest and fields. In the spring, an abundance of wildflowers bloom along the trail. There are a few creek crossings along the way. When the water is high, they require a bit of fun rock hopping, but otherwise, they are easy to cross.