July 21, 2012

Photo Essay: Corral Canyon Loop (Updated for 2021)

[Last updated 5/12/21 11:14 PM PT—Corral Canyon has reopened with a new, improved trailhead. Stay tuned for a new photo essay from the restored trail.]

circa 2021 

[Update 11/22/18 9:40 PM PT—The Woolsey Fire wiped out the Corral Canyon hillside all the way down to the salt march at the creek bridge. The trail is currently closed. For photos of the burn area, click here.]

coastal salt marsh

In my quest to conquer the under-appreciated hikes of Malibu, this week I stopped by Corral Canyon—the last undeveloped canyon that flows freely to the ocean.

It's not very long, very high, or very far (its trailhead is right off the PCH), but it's deserted—a rare patch of pristine wilderness, right off the beach.

What starts off as a relatively easy, shaded walk across a dry creek...

...(on that day, wet only at the coastal salt marsh by the PCH bridge)...

...turns into a spectacular stroll past wildflowers that are still in bloom...

...and an old chimney...

...with a cool breeze coming off the Pacific.

Although it's dry as you climb higher...

...there don't seem to be signs of the devastating 2007 fire that destroyed over 50 Malibu homes.

The loop trail winds around...

...and if you take a left at the fork, you get a nice view of the ocean for part of the way up...

...and the entire way down.

I only passed a couple of people on the trail, and only heard the wind whipping through my earrings mixed with the white noise of the sea.

On my way out, I heard some rustling in the bushes and saw a hat poking out, indicating a bit more human activity in the canyon that I initially thought.

Ah, the secret lives of canyon folk...

Related Post:
Corral Canyon, Malibu: Where the Fire Reached the Sea

Nearby Hikes:
Tuna Canyon
Solstice Canyon
Temescal Gateway Park
Los Liones to Parker Mesa (Topanga State Park)
Will Rogers State Park

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