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This Meetup is cancelled

(Trekker Series 4) Circle X Ranch - The Grotto Falls

  • This location is shown only to members

  • Due to Ventura County Fire, this event has been cancelled and replaced by a hike to

    Switzer Falls and Bear Canyon water holes. 

    This is the link to the new event.


    Organizer: Mike Cheng

    Location: Malibu, CA

    Hike difficulty:  Level 4/10 (with extensive bouldering)

    A beginner hike: No

    Distance: 4.5 miles (This is a partial loop hike.)

    Elevation Gain: 850'

    Time: 4 hours

    Trail condition: Single file trail, big boulders, mostly shaded

    Water: Minimum 2 liters

    Guest: 1

    Dog: no

    Toilette: at Circle X Ranch ranger station

    Parking: Circle X Ranch parking lot. Parking space is quite limited. Carpooling is a must.


    Direction: Pacific Coast Highway to Yerba Buena Road. Turn inland; go 5.4 miles to Circle X Ranch Ranger station.

    What to bring: hat, sunscreen, gloves, energy bar, lunch, snacks, water, and the usual stuff.


    Trail description:

    This 5-mile partial loop hike visits a unique destignation around Malibu. From the parking area for Circle X Ranch, we plan to walk down the access road down to the tailhead, which descends to a narrow bolder-filled canyon that houses the mysterious grotto. Along the way, the trail passes in and out of shade as it follows a small creek down the mountain.

    The trail comes to a sudden end as the creek, the west fork of the Arroyo Sequit, passes through and beneath large rocks. Continue downstream, passing over big boulders. The water can be seen between the boulders some ten feet below.

    There are several ways where you can get down between the rocks and explore the grotto. Continuing over the rocks, to the point where the creek makes its exit. At the base of the grotto, water tumbles off a rock like a shower head, dropping twelve feet into an enclosed pool. Here a ring of shallow water around a tall boulder creates a semi-circular cave.



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    2013 Activities:

    Trekker Series: On the 1st Saturday of the month and will be 6 miles or less.
    Explorer Series: On the 2nd Saturday and will be 7- 8 miles.
    Adventurer Seires: On the 3rd Saturday and will be 9 miles or more.

    Mountaineer Series with elevation gain of 4000' and more will be scheduled for 3rd and 4th quarters for seasoned alpinists.

    Exploratory hikes are available off schedule. To participate, you must be a strong and seasoned hiker. Please email me if you are interested.

    Waiting list priority: People who hike with me or with Los Angeles Hiking Group frequently will be given priority when they are on the waiting list.

    No show policy: If you sign up for an event and no show, you will either lose your waiting list priority or not be able to sign up for the next event.



    If you have prior medical condiction or a family history of illnesses pertaining to heart, lungs, brain, etc. that can be aggravated by heat and physical exertion, this is not the hike for you.

    If you have never done a hike of this distance or difficulty before, this hike will be very difficult for you. It may well be your death march. The mountain is not going anywhere. We will schedule this event again in the future. Do it when your mind and body are ready.

    Hiking is a recreation, not a suicide mission.

    Release of Liability:

    The organizer (me) of this trip is a volunteer and is not a professional guide. The function of the organizer is only to organize this trip. Each person who signs up for a trip/hike/or outing is responsible for his or her own safety and the safety of his or her guests.

    By signing up for this trip, or any other event organized by me, you are acknowledging that you are aware and have made your guests aware of the risks, dangers and hazards associated with any outdoor activity and freely accept and fully assume all such risks, dangers and hazards, and further agree to release and discharge the organizer (me) of this hike from and against any and all liability arising from your and your guest's participation in the group activities.

    In addition, you and your guests are acknowledging that you agree to the Meetup terms of service especially paragraph 6.2:

    Profile Photo:

    Members interested in joining this hike must have a profile photo showing his/her face. This is a requirement of the L.A. Hiking Group. Without it, you will not be allowed to sign up.

Join or login to comment.

  • Craig

    Sorry I have to work now.

    May 2, 2013

  • Rimona

    Mike I'm not sure I will do the hike. I'll let you know tomorrow.

    May 2, 2013

  • Heather

    Yeah.... I'm in. Finally! Now I have to think about carpooling. Is anybody coming from the South Bay (Torrance, to be exact)? If so, we can meet somewhere off of the 405 fwy and carpool.

    May 1, 2013

    • Heather

      Ok. Thanks. I'll call you.

      May 1, 2013

  • Lynda

    I hate to give up my spot because bouldering has become my favorite type of hike...... but my daughter decided to move this weekend. kids. :-)

    May 1, 2013

  • Rimona

    Mike, how much is the parking? do we need a Recreation Pass?

    April 30, 2013

    • Luis

      small unmarked bills are prefered... or gold dabloons.

      May 1, 2013

    • Luis

      to be put into an empty grande Starbucks cofee cup with the name. Luis written on it. Said cup should be left unattended by the boulder that it's between the willow tree fifty paces due east from the station. if a person of Hispanic decent gives you the code word "seahawk" then you can consider the payment made.

      May 1, 2013

  • Angela

    I've made other plans.

    May 1, 2013

  • Heather N.

    darn it. I'm moving this weekend. next time...

    May 1, 2013

  • Alise H.

    Anyone coming from the Santa Clarita area?

    April 26, 2013

    • Anna B.

      Alise, I am coming from the the Santa Clarita area.

      April 30, 2013

    • Alise H.

      We can ride together. :). I don't mind driving, we just have to minimize parking.

      May 1, 2013

  • Luis

    I'm guessing that soon the question will come up about carpooling as it did on the original hike. I'm open to picking up two people. I live in Arleta... think 5fwy meets the 170 fwy area. I also backpack and will bring my ceramic filter to give us water filtering capabilities on the trip.

    January 3, 2013

    • olivia c.

      Lius I want to carpool? I can meet you on the 101 and Reseda. I can help with gas$.

      April 29, 2013

  • becky (ngoc bich) l.

    Very sorry, I can not make this hike. hope that I will be able to go the next time

    April 27, 2013

  • Eric L.

    Still up for this one!

    April 23, 2013

  • Katie Elizabeth A.

    I really wanted to go, but now I have a work trip out of town :(
    So I'm opening up a spot for someone.

    April 3, 2013

  • Pau M.

    Can't make it to this one. Bummer.

    January 3, 2013

  • Rimona

    Hope to make the cut! LOL

    January 3, 2013

  • Cindyroy

    Is it this coming Saturday, JAN. 5th?

    January 3, 2013

    • Luis

      No, it seems to be a second trip for the over flow of participants for the Feb 2 trip. It takes place on may 4th. same time and location as the original trip.

      January 3, 2013

  • Russ

    Letting another have the space.

    January 3, 2013


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