Hiking Solstice Canyon! Malibu’s Nature Trail! A Waterfall! The Remains Of Roberts Ranch! Hiking Straight Up The Rising Sun!

The Pacific Ocean Cradled In The Santa Monica Mountains!

If you are looking for a great, energetic hike that takes you to this view of the Pacific Ocean, then Malibu’s Solstice Canyon is for you!

Solstice Canyon is literally just off of Malibu’s Pacific Coast Highway…there is plenty of parking, and multiple routes to take you up into the hills…

We headed out in mid-morning: we had our masks with us, and there were few others there, who all wore masks and safely distanced as well…in fact, the only thing we got close to were the various trees that were all along the trail!

Solstice Canyon features several options for easy, moderate, or strenuous hikes through what their website calls “coastal sage scrub and riparian plant communities.”

Yes, this hole in the ground is home to SOMETHING!

the parks website lets you know that “along the way you might encounter acorn woodpeckers, alligator lizards, fence lizards, or a red-tailed hawk soaring overhead.”

There are plenty of other places for wildlife to live as well…nature offering up lots of photo opportunities as you hike up towards one of the coolest spots on the trail:

Welcome To Roberts Ranch!

Wildfires left behind some architectural ruins in the park, and this site has a fascinating history.

These are the stone and brick ruins of The Roberts Ranch house, which was designed by Architect Paul Revere Williams in 1952. In 1929, Williams became the first African American member of the American Institute of Architects!

This homestead site had a history of fires, so Owner Fred Roberts insisted that fire protection be incorporated into the design. The visually striking pools supplied water for an elaborate pump system to protect the home from fires.

However, the pumps and pipes were not maintained after Fred’s death and the home was lost in the 1982 Dayton Canyon Fire.

The Park has left the surviving features, which they point out provides a unique opportunity to walk through a blueprint of a Paul R. Williams design.

Just past the ruins is the Solstice Canyon Waterfall!

Not much water makes it’s way down the mountain but it’s peaceful regardless…

Hiking Straight Up To The Rising Sun!

As you can see from the sign, we are 1.3 miles from the parking lot…but if we want to extend our return, we can go by way of the “Rising Sun” trail…Alex loved that idea, so we did – and here’s what we encountered:

It was literally straight up! Apparently, The Rising Sun Trail is designed to take you back to the parking by going OVER the mountain we skirted on our way to the waterfall!

Yes, our trip back took us OVER this ridge – I looked it up later and it elevated about 350 feet – here’s what I recorded when we got to the top:

It was a bit grueling at times, because it was a series of switchbacks designed to take you higher and higher…well above the trail we took to the waterfall – that said, when you got to the top, this was the view:

And then it was time to head back down:

After all that, we ended up back at our car – a full 2-1/2 hours of hiking behind us…it was great!

There are so many great places to hike in Los Angeles, including Beverly Hills!

You can hike to the top of Franklin Canyon, located in Beverly Hills, and see all the way to the Pacific Ocean!

Oh, you can also see this:

That’s a Rattlesnake!

We survived our encounter, but click here if you want to see how close we came to this wildlife:


I also have shared this book about an incredible hike that was also a life-changing journey:

This is a fascinating book I dubbed:

“Eat. Pray. Hike.”

Click here to see how Author Ninya ended up in the Scottish Highlands with a stranger:



Also, why not subscribe and never miss out? It’s easy, and there are NO ads of any kind, just stuff I like, so click on the main page and “follow” me on the upper right!


Thanks so much for reading! If you liked this, please share on social media!

Categories: Exotic Travel, Los Angeles, Memoirs, nature, Real Estate, Sports, Travel, Travel Adventures, Travel Memoir

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21 replies

  1. An interesting old house, John, I would enjoy looking around it. I see what you mean about not much water, the waterfall in the video is a trickle. I do like how you caught the light in some of these pictures.


  2. What a beautiful place to hike. The felled tree is stunning. What a shame that the pipes and pumps weren’t enabled when the Robert’s ranch caught fire. Yet, things happen for a reason. Because of the fire, people can now walk the blueprint.


  3. This hike seems a great day out. A good length too to challenge you.


    • It’s great. The walk to the waterfall is a gradual slope upwards, really easy…then you can do the “over the mountain” `1.6 miles back that gives you a nice workout for about 20 minutes before you get the beautiful view and the easy walk down…it’s a nicely maintained park as well! Thanks for commenting!


  4. I wouid love to do that hike with you. But as there were only you and Alex, surely no need to wear a mask?
    Best wishes, Pete.


  5. Wow amazing views, I love canyons..


  6. Hi John
    Wow! Great to hear your voice again, (even with all the huffing and puffing). Then again, it has been 40 years since I last saw you and I myself was having trouble catching my breath just watching the video of you going up the mountain.
    Keep em coming.
    I love the stories!!!
    John S.


    • Thanks for reading and I love hearing from you! Still to come is a 454-foot climb Alex talked me into a few months ago – straight up the inside of a plateau in Utah! It was great fun and my first time using climbing Carabiners…it was a blast and a bit nerve-wracking, especially crossing a suspension bridge at the top over eternal nothingness…the bridge of 18″ wide!


  7. Awesome spot! Feels like spring is here.


  8. What a wonderful hike! I can feel the warmth of the sunshine, unlike here in the Pacific NW where the first day of spring is cold and rainy!


  9. That trail and hike look great


  10. What a great hike! Next time I’m in LA…


    • It’s literally a quarter mile off of th ePacific Coast Highway, and you can stay down in the canyon or climb to the top for the view of the ocean…which isn’t as great as some other hikes but that’s not what this one is known for…so many in these Santa Monica Mountains!


  11. You should have worn your Agogie Resistance pants…now that would have been a work out



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