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How to get to Switzer Falls, California


Switzer Falls, California

It's nice to have a balance in life especially when you live in the city where everything is just moving really fast.  I love spending my days in nature and away from my phone as much as possible on our nature trips.  It's nice to have some clarity and peace of mind.

Our next trip is Switzer Falls located in the Angeles National Forest.  I like this hike because of the big trees along the way which provide shade and protection from the heat of the sun.  Let's go!

How to get there:
Location: Switzer Picnic Area, Switzer Truck Trail, Altadena, CA 91001
Entrance fee: Free
Parking: Adventure Pass needed (purchase @Big 5 Sporting Goods)

Route: Switzer Falls via Gabrielino Trail
Distance: 4.3 miles (back and forth)
Duration: 3 hours (back and forth, depending on pace)
Highlights: 50-foot tall waterfall


We started early to make sure we have a parking spot and to avoid human traffic.  It's a popular hike so expect a lot of fellow hikers and sightseers. 



The first part of the hike was beautiful and relaxing.  We saw many large trees, hiked a rugged trail and breathed in the cool morning air. 


This is the coolest hike I've done so far here in Los Angeles.  Most of the time the trails are wide-open spaces with no trees at all for shelter.  However, this trail to the waterfalls had numerous flora that covered the path and provided shade for all. 


There are signs to get to the falls, but it can get confusing when you reach an elevated area that opens up to the clear blue sky.  This part of the hike is not covered and you're exposed to the grand heat of the morning sun — but you get to see the beautiful mountains. 


Don't go up to this sign, keep going on the same path to Switzer Falls. 



After getting your daily dose of sunshine, you'll see trees again.

Hike early for parking space and to enjoy the cooler morning air.



Hiking tip: Invest in a great pair of hiking boots.  We love our Columbia boots and have no regrets.






Interesting find: a rock that has a shark face, smiling and watching over those people who throw their trash anywhere.  Don't litter!




If you see a river, it means the waterfalls are nearby.  We heard its roar from afar and that got us all excited. 


We found an old kind of metal which could be part of farm equipment from long ago.


The 50-foot tall waterfall looked beautiful and refreshing.  We didn't go for a swim as the water was icy cold.


We had our snacks here for a few minutes before heading back to the trail.  




Make sure to clean your mess and don't leave anything behind. 


We followed the same path back to the parking area. I would definitely recommend this hike for beginners.  The terrain is friendly and it's only about a 3-hour roundtrip to see the waterfall.

Have fun and be safe ^__^
Itinerary Reminders:

1. Flight Details
Make sure to write down your booking reference number, be at the airport two hours before your flight and allocate time for your travel to the airport.

2. Accommodation Details
Write down your hotel/motel/resort/BnB booking number. Contact your place to inform them around when you'll be arriving — it really does help.  Also, ask if your accommodation has any discounted activities.  You'd be surprised!

3a. Transportation
List possible times your bus/train/boat arrives and leaves so you don't miss an activity.  Always give yourself an extra 30-45 minutes in case you get lost, get stuck in traffic, or are looking for parking.  Better early than late.  Of utmost importance: check for the last trip and fares!  So you still have time and money to get back.

3b. Car Rentals
Take note of your pick-up address and time allotted.  Our last car rental told us to bring the car back by a certain time with a certain amount of gas.  Allot money for fuel and parking.

4. Budgeting
Set aside a minimum and maximum spending amount for: meals, transportation, entrance fees, activities, souvenirs and emergencies.  3 meals a day + snacks add up quickly, so keep track!  As well as tips for restaurants and activities.

5. Activities
Call to confirm your booking(s) a day or so beforehand.  Set alarms and/or calendar reminders for things you plan to do (i.e- bungee-jumping, river-rafting, or even city/food tours).


Do you want more adventure?
If you still have one more day to spare why not go Hike Los Liones Trailhead to Parker Mesa Overlook, California.

Where am I going next?
My next adventure is driving 3 hours away from Los Angeles to see the famous Potato Chip Rock of San Diego, California.

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