Past Meetup

The Backbone from Hondo Canyon to Fossil Ridge and beyond

This Meetup is past

38 people went

Location visible to members


Distance 10 + miles

Elevation Gain: 1500 +

Rating: 6+ Moderate


Trailhead is located along Old Topanga Canyon Road 0.4 miles west of Topanga Canyon Blvd.

From Santa Monica go north PCH Right on Topanga Canyon and left of Old Topanga Canyon Road for 0.4 Miles

From The Valley Exit 101 at Topanga Canyon Blvd drive south right as Old Topanga Canyon Road for 0.4 Miles

Hondo Canyon is a real gem and even reminded me of views in the Grand Canyon at times. Another spectacular section of the Backbone Trail this hike includes staggering views of pink colored sedimentary rock formations. Proceed over the creek near the Topanga trailhead and up steadily thru beautifully shaded live oaks and a sloping green meadow.

Before long, you will come to a wonderful pink gorge down on the right and you can take a side path down to it past a small waterfall. Once back at the main trail you will begin switch backing up the steep south slope of Hondo Canyon thru a lovely oak forest and then a deep chaparral forest.

Along the way, you will enjoy breathtaking views of sedimentary rock formations.

After fossil ridge, we continue on the backbone trail toward saddle peak for lunch.

PLEASE - Know your limits and abilities. Bring and drink plenty of liquids when hiking. Check weather conditions, dress accordingly, and be aware of your surroundings at all times. Dogs, well behaved and picked up after would be fine on this one. Watching out for snakes, ticks, uneven footing, spectacular views, beautiful fauna all while carrying on a conversation with awesome (usually) fellow hikers can be extremely hazardous, rewarding and fun.

1 – A walk
2 – A longer walk
3 – 3 mile hike w/little elevation gain
4 – 5+ mile hike w/500 ft. elevation gain
5 – 5+ mile hike w/1000 ft. elevation gain 6 – 7+ mile hike w/1000 ft. elevation gain
7 – 7+ mile hike w/1500 ft. elevation gain
8 – 5+ mile hike w/2000 ft. elevation gain

Rain Cancels all hike


I am a volunteer (i.e. not liable for the group). Safety is a priority for everyone in the group. Think of this as hiking with a group of friends.
Outdoor sports and other events we plan can be inherently dangerous and accidents may happen. By participating in any posted event, you are taking responsibility for your own safety and well-being. All participants take full responsibility for their own actions. If you choose to sign up for any you are your personal safety depends on your own judgment and experience.

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