Hike Switzer Falls

2 minute read

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.

Picnic area
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.

Bear Canyon on the right
Narrow path

As you continue, the view over the San Gabriel Mountains is stunning!

San Gabriel Mountains

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.

Junction – The left path leads to the waterfall
The descent

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?

If you enjoyed this post, please leave a comment and share it with a hiker and nature lover.

2 thoughts on “Hike Switzer Falls

  1. Superbe ! ça doit être idéal pour les gens qui aiment marcher et qui peuvent se rafraîchir, mais ça n’est pas pour moi qui suis de plus en plus adepte des surfaces planes.
    Merci Marie pour cette petite promenade virtuelle.
    A bientôt


    1. Switzer Fall est une magnifique randonnee au coeur des montagnes de Los Angeles. Le denivele est effectivement sportif!
      Pour une randonnee plus accessible, je recommande Escondido Falls a Malibu, Placerita Canyon a Santa Clarita, ou Eaton Canyon a Pasadena.

      A tres bientot sur le blog!



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