Hikes in California

California is blessed with a variety of beautiful landscapes. You can stroll along beautiful coastlines, summit 14,000-foot peaks, or hike up desert canyons. California has so much to offer!

Hikespeak has write-ups for over 400 hikes in California, along with info on campgrounds and other outdoor attractions. These trails have been organized into a few hiking regions. Pick a region from the map below to see a regional page with a searchable and sortable list of trails in that area, linking to individual write-ups packed with photos, maps, directions, and other useful details. Hiking in California is a wonderful thing!

California Hiking Regions

Hiking in California

Want to visit one of California’s national parks? Jump straight to Joshua Tree, Death Valley, Kings Canyon, Pinnacles, Sequoia, or Yosemite.

Interested in other states? See where else hikespeak has been by switching over to the US page.

Not sure where you want to hike? Check out the latest trail reports below.

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Hollywood Sign Mount Lee Cahuenga Peak Burbank Peak Lake Hollywood Reservoir Loop Hike Los Angeles California
You might not realize that Hollywood has a lake until you look down on it from the top of Mount Lee by the Hollywood Sign. Numerous hikes lead to the Hollywood Sign and a level hiking trail wraps around Lake Hollywood Reservoir. To visit the Hollywood Sign, three peaks on the west side of Griffith Park, and Lake Hollywood, set out on the Hollywood Sign – Hollywood... Read more.
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Tagged with · Free Trails · Hollywood · Lakes · Griffith Park · Santa Monica Mountains
Distance: 7.4 miles · Elevation change: 1070 feet
By: Published: Last updated: May 31, 2017
Burbank Peak Hike Wisdom Tree Hike Griffith Park Hollywood Burbank Peak Trail Wonderview Drive Los Angeles
Burbank Peak is a summit-like perch at the end of a ridge extending west from Cahuenga Peak, the highest point in Griffith Park. Hikers have many reasons to reach the top of Burbank Peak. One popular motivation is delivering a message to the Wisdom Tree, a long pine on Burbank Peak that rises above the surrounding brush. The viewpoint also hosts an America Flag in honor... Read more.
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Tagged with · Free Trails · Hollywood · Dog-Friendly Trails · Griffith Park · Santa Monica Mountains
Distance: 1.6 miles · Elevation change: 740 feet
By: Published: Last updated: May 31, 2017
 Hollywood Sign via Innsdale Drive Trail Mulholland Highway Trail Mount Lee Drive Hike Griffith Park Los Angeles California
With the public access closure of the trailhead at the top of Beachwood Drive for the Hollyridge Trail, hikers have lost a key route to the Hollywood Sign on Mount Lee. Those wanting to hike to the sign are now being encouraged to start up Brush Canyon Trail from a trailhead on Canyon Drive for a 6.4-mile hike to Mount Lee's famous sign. While this is a great option for... Read more.
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Tagged with · Free Trails · Hollywood · Dog-Friendly Trails · Griffith Park · Santa Monica Mountains
Distance: 4.6 miles · Elevation change: 750 feet
By: Published: Last updated: May 31, 2017
Hazard Peak Bloody Nose Trail Hiedra Trail Hazard Peak Trail Hike Montaña de Oro State Park Hike California
The panoramic summit of Hazard Peak in Montaña de Oro State Park has excellent coastal views. Hazard Peak Trail is the most obvious route to the top and a great choice, rising to the 1,076-foot summit over 3 miles. A junction partway up Hazard Peak Trail makes it possible to add a couple other trails to the approach. Bloody Nose Trail and Hiedra Trail are a combined... Read more.
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Tagged with · California State Parks · Free Trails · Irish Hills · Los Osos · Ocean Views · Montaña de Oro State Park
Distance: 5.55 miles · Elevation change: 950 feet
By: Published: Last updated: May 20, 2017
South Dune Trail Bloody Nose Trail Hiedra Trail Hazard Peak Trail Loop Montaña de Oro State Park Hike Hiedra Trail Loop Los Osos California
Hikes in Montaña de Oro State Park travel along the coast or delve inland into canyons and up peaks. If you want a mix of hiking environments, consider this four-trail loop, which combines South Dune Trail, Bloody Nose Trail, Hiedra Trail, and Hazard Peak Trail for a 2 2/3 mile round trip hike with a little over 300 feet of elevation change. This loop can be added to the... Read more.
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Tagged with · California State Parks · Free Trails · Irish Hills · Los Osos · Ocean Views · Montaña de Oro State Park
Distance: 2.67 miles · Elevation change: 310 feet
By: Published: Last updated: May 20, 2017
Rinconada Trail Hike Santa Lucia Mountains Los Padres National Forest Bell Mountain Rinconada Hiking Trail Santa Margarita California
Rising through grassy meadows, oak woodlands, and chaparral slopes, Rinconada Trail provides North County access to the Santa Lucia Mountains in Los Padres National Forest. Gaze over bucolic valleys on the hike up to a high point in a grassy mountain pass with views over remote ridges and canyons in the Santa Lucia Wilderness. Turn around at an overlook by the crest of... Read more.
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Tagged with · Free Trails · Los Padres National Forest · Santa Lucia Mountains · Santa Margarita · Summits
Distance: 3 miles · Elevation change: 625 feet
By: Published: Last updated: June 1, 2017
Santa Paula Canyon Trail The Punchbowl Hike Santa Paula Canyon Punch Bowls Big Cone Camp East Fork Trail Los Padres National Forest Topatopa Mountains California
Framed by tall, rugged ridges in the Topatopa Mountains, Santa Paula Creek slices through the rockbed of Santa Paula Canyon, carving out alluring pools and cascades called the Punchbowl (or Punch Bowls). Finishing with a flourish, the Punchbowl has a 25-foot waterfall and a pool that you can relax beside. The Punchbowl is located between Big Cone Camp and Cross Camp,... Read more.
By: Published: Last updated: April 17, 2017
Sisar Canyon Trail Hike Sisar Canyon Road Summit Ojai Santa Paula California Los Padres National Forest Sisar Creek Hike
Sisar Canyon cuts into the mountains above Upper Ojai Valley, halfway between Ojai and Santa Paula. A wide dirt trail travels up the canyon toward Topatopa Ridge, a striking bluff of striped rock. Rather than taking Sisar Canyon Trail (also known as Sisar Canyon Road) deep into the Topatopa Mountains, turn around at an overlook 2.75 miles up the trail for a picturesque... Read more.
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Tagged with · Creeks · Free Trails · Los Padres National Forest · Ojai · Santa Paula · Topatopa Mountains · Upper Ojai Valley
Distance: 6.5 miles · Elevation change: 1200 feet
By: Published: Last updated: April 17, 2017
Horn Canyon Trail Hike Ojai California Los Padres National Forest Thacher Creek Canyon Thacher School Trailhead
Horn Canyon Trail rises into the frontcountry of the Topatopa Mountains from Ojai, California. While you can spend a full day (and a full workout) hiking up Horn Canyon Trail, you can also opt for the shorter option described here, trekking up the trail's moderate opening mile, past multiple creek crossings and views down Ojai Valley, before venturing off trail up the... Read more.
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Tagged with · Creeks · Free Trails · Los Padres National Forest · Off Trail · Ojai · Topatopa Mountains
Distance: 2.9 miles · Elevation change: 750 feet
By: Published: Last updated: April 17, 2017
Oak Creek Canyon Loop Trail Los Robles Open Space Thousand Oaks California Santa Monica Mountains
Oak Creek Canyon Trail is a rather special trail in Los Robles Open Space that is designed for the blind as well as the sighted. The all-access nature trail has a dozen and a half signs in English and Braille. While blind hikers will probably want to turn around at the end of the guide fence, for a 0.55 mile hike with 50 feet of elevation change, others may continue on to... Read more.
By: Published: Last updated: April 5, 2017