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Chasing waterfall in Angeles National Forest! Switzer Falls offers a 50-foot waterfall with a small pool, canyon hiking, and a panoramic view over the San Gabriel Mountains.
– Distance: 5.5 miles out and back from the Angeles Crest Hwy*.
– Difficulty: Moderate
– Elevation gain: 695 feet
– Time: 2:15 hours
* Note: the parking lot was closed, so add an extra mile (O&B) to reach the Switzer Falls picnic area.
The trail starts next to the picnic area, at the end of the parking lot. Cross the bridge to engage on the Switzer Falls trail.
The first mile is easy as you hike in the shady wooded canyon. You will cross the stream ten times (one way), so be prepared if you are hiking after rainy days.
Around miles 1.5, the trail ascends to Bear Canyon. The path is narrow, rocky, and steep. Be careful: there are no fences on the ridge.
As you continue, the view over the San Gabriel Mountains is stunning!
You may hear the upper falls from the rim.
Neither the ascension nor the descend were too difficult, but you need to be cautious.
At the next junction, descend the trail leading to Switzer Falls. At the bottom, continue upstream to the lower falls.
For this final stretch, you will cross the stream again until the lower Switzer Falls.
There it is the 50 feet Switzer waterfall and its small pool. There is a small area to enjoy the view, relax and take pictures!
Finally, retrace your steps to access the parking lot.
Article based on my hike in January 2022.
*COVID-19 update as of February 2022*
- Please wear a mask and practice a physical distance of 6 feet between yourself and others.
- Please check L.A. County’s health and safety protocols before your hike.
Address: Switzer Truck Trail, Angeles National Forest, Tujunga, CA 91042
– I recommend hiking early morning to avoid heat
– Park open 24 hours
– Parking: Adventure Pass required https://www.fs.usda.gov/detailfull/r5/passes-permits/recreation/?cid=STELPRDB5181410&width=full
– Grab water, hiking shoes, and sun cream
Ready to hike Switzer Falls?
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