Lost Cabin Trail in Malibu Creek State Park

Lost Cabin Trail is a 0.75-mile long dead-end single track departing from Crags Road near the location where the MASH television show was filmed. The trail ends in a mountain canyon at an empty plot where a cabin once stood. Though there is no longer evidence of the cabin’s existence, the trek still offers hikers immersion into a remote section of Malibu Creek State Park behind the Goat Buttes. While the views are not so sensational as to attract a lot of hikers, Lost Cabin Trail provides a pleasant 1.5-mile extension to the MASH site hike for those looking to get a bit more out of their visit to the park.

Woolsey Fire Update: Lost Cabin Trail and most of Malibu Creek State Park have reopened following the November 2018 Woolsey Fire, which burned through the park. Check the Malibu Creek State Park page for more information.

Malibu Creek State Park Lost Cabin Trail
Rustic terrain along Lost Cabin Trail

From Crags Road, a couple hundred feet east of the MASH site (and 2.35 miles from the park entrance), turn southwest on a narrow track labeled Lost Cabin Trail.

After a short distance, the trail ascends to a saddle in a low ridge with a nice view up and down the range. Lost Cabin Trail continues over the ridge into a fan-shaped mountain canyon. Descend the slope along the left side of the canyon, before crossing the creek bed, and coming to a sudden stop at the site of the Lost Cabin.

Malibu Creek State Park Lost Cabin Trail
Mountains above the Lost Cabin site

A sign is actually posted to declare that the trail is over, which is the only indication that you have arrived at the location of the now-vanished cabin. The trail becomes faint and harder to follow toward the end, and since the Lost Cabin site is so anticlimactic, if you decide to turn around early, you won’t be missing much.

Malibu Creek State Park Lost Cabin Trail
The Lost Cabin site at the end of the trail

This is a dead-end trail, with no junctions along the way. After reaching the Lost Cabin, return the way to came for a 1.5-mile extension with 190 feet of elevation between Crags Road and the high point of the trail.

To get to Lost Cabin Trail: Hike in to the former MASH set along Crags Road from any of the access points to Malibu Creek State Park, including South Grassland Trail, Cistern Trail, and the main park entrance.

The main entrance to Malibu Creek State Park is located on the west side of Las Virgenes/Malibu Canyon Road between the 101 and PCH, 6.1 miles from the coast (just south of Mulholland Highway). A $15 fee is charged for each vehicle parking inside the park. Parking is also available outside the park.

Trailhead address: 1925 Las Virgenes Road, Malibu Creek State Park, Calabasas, CA 91301
Trailhead coordinates: 34.0964, -118.71673 (34° 05′ 47″N 118° 43′ 00.2″W)

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Elevation Profile
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These photos were taken in November of 2010. Click to enlarge.
Nearby Trails
Malibu creek MASH hike M*A*S*H Set
This hike visits the site where the exteriors of the television show MASH were filmed, a 4.75-mile trek from the park entrance.
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This team of single tracks make a scenic descent to Century Lake in Malibu Creek State Park, providing a short loop or longer hikes to other destinations.
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Phantom Trail Phantom Trail
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Malibu Creek Grassland Trail Grassland Trail to Crags Road and Rock Pool
This easy 3-mile hike enters Malibu Creek State Park on South Grassland Trail, then forms a loop around Crags Road to visit Rock Pool, a popular park retreat.
talepop trail Talepop Loop
This 4.75-mile hike climbs 500 feet over a scenic mountain between Liberty Canyon and Las Virgenes Canyon.
malibu creek Malibu Creek Traverse
This adventure hike explores the C-shaped gorge between Rock Pool and Century Lake in Malibu Creek State Park.
Malibu hikes More trails in the Santa Monica Mountains
Explore other destinations in the range.
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The year-round campground has 63 sites with picnic tables, fire rings, flush toilets, coin showers, and a dump station.

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4 Comments on Lost Cabin Trail in Malibu Creek State Park

  1. reddy Marri wrote:

    How long will it take to hike the MASH trail? I would like to visit the trail in May 1st Week, is there a guided tour? pl let me know

  2. Walker W. wrote:

    In the late 40s early 50s, Ron and Nancy Reagan owned a ranch at mulholland hwy and Malibu lake, now one of the park facilities and parking lots ….

    In that same time period they were both in a movie, which also had Nigel
    Bruce, in which Reagan played a cynical Indiana Jones type character; in the
    movie he and nancy rescue a group of asian children.

    I have hiked the Lost Cabin trail, and believe scenes for the rescue were shot

  3. David Bender wrote:

    Lost Cabin Trail actually is a through trail. There is a now indistinct trail that leads down the canyon and eventually enters Malibu Creek. There is a fork at that point: to the left goes to the back side of Century Dam, to the right goes to the Rock Pool. In the 70s and 80s this trail was very evident, but not so much anymore. Last time I was on it we used machetes to clear overgrown brush.