Summary: This is an enjoyable and relatively easy day hike along Newton Canyon in the Santa Monica Mountains. Most of the trail is shaded by small oak trees, and the sun filtering through the trees is quite lovely. There was also the music of countless birds as I hiked. The trail slowly drops down into Newton Canyon, the climbs back up to meet Latigo Canyon, this hikes turn-around point. For some additional mileage and elevation gain, continue past this point on the Backbone Trail to the Castro Crest Motorway, adding an additional 3 miles to the hike.
Another option for extending this hike, is to take a short trip down to Newton Canyon Falls from the parking lot. Hike west, away from Kanan Road, Take two forks to the left that drop you down into the Newton Creek Streambed. Head upstream for a few hundred feet to the base of a 30 foot seasonal waterfall. This bonus hike is about 1.5 miles round trip.
Trailhead: From the Ventura Freeway (101) in Agoura, take Kanan Road towards the beach for about 8 miles. The parking lot is on your right between the second and third tunnels. There are two trail heads in this parking area. Take the trail towards Latigo Canyon. (Lat:34.07591 Lon:-118.81533)
Trail Guides for Newton Canyon:
Day Hikes Around Los Angeles
by Robert Stone (Day Hike Books, Inc.)
On The Trail - Malibu to Santa Barbara
by Cathy Philipp (Cathy Philipp Publishing)
Best Seasons: Year-Round
User Groups: Hikers, Dogs
Ranger Contact: Santa Monica Recreation Area - 805-370-2300
Localhikes Reporter: This hike was submitted by Jim Zuber, who has posted 104 other hikes on this site
Trail Reviews Page 1 of 2 Submit your own review
Reviewed by Samantha on 10/21/2012
Wonderful Rainy day Hike :-) my first, 5hrs. in the Rain. We really enjoyed our private "Rain forest" the rain, made the trail seem so different. The droplets of rain from the Trees, the sweet smell of fresh, it felt like we were the only two humans alive :-) It was so quiet & peaceful, in a very quiet moment, we even saw 3 Deer, they traveled beside us for awhile amoung the Trees, as we Hiked along. We ran to keep warm at times, and it was slippery at times, but great FUN, can't wait to go again.....go play in the Rain :-)
Reviewed by Samantha on 9/17/2012
Wow today was Amazing!!! My friend and I Hiked into the Backbone trail for 6 & half hours :-) Beautiful day!!! We started at Newton Canyon, then Hiked up the Backbone trail. Turning around, and heading back, we enjoyed Trail Running back down hill. Returning to the parking lot, we decided to continue onto the Back bone trail, we went back up hill again to cross over the tunnel, It was so peaceful, shaded in most places with large Trees, the Creek beds were dry though, but it was very nice, a sweet forest feeling. We crossed the Latigo Canyon & continued onto the Backbone. It was getting late so we called it a day and headed back the way we came, ending up back at the Newton parking area. We will do this Hike again, for sure :-)
Reviewed by Melinda on 9/9/2012
Steady inclines the whole way up but really nice down hill on the way back. The trail gets pretty small at some points (fits only one person) but it's mostly shaded. I went 9/8/12 with my boyfriend and our dog and it was fairly warm but there was a nice breeze. I would come here again.
Reviewed by Nicole on 6/22/2010
I would like to inform all other potential hikers about my experience that I had towards the end of the hike because it is very helpful and would not want this to happen to anyone else. I did enjoy the hike with my dog, however upon returning to my vehicle which was parked in the parking lot I encountered two completely blown out windows from my Volvo. I was shocked along with infuriated. Ironically my purse was not stolen or anything as a matter of fact. So I believe it to be kids, who do not have a conscience, that think vandalizing is a fun thing to do since nothing was taken from my vehicle. I am very disappointed because I love hiking in Malibu but I think I will give it a rest for now. So please be very careful.
Reviewed by celeste on 1/23/2010
Went and hiked the trail today (01.23.2010). The waterfalls were awesome!! We couldn't find the trail to the falls so we started walking along the creek. We could tell how bad the rains had been by the demarcation of how high the creek had gotten. The falls were AWSOME!! Got soaked up to my knees from traversing the creekbed trying to get to the waterfalls. Little did we know that there was a trail up there, we couldn't find it. We only found it later because some hikers came up as we were coming down. We hiked beyond the very small trail that led to the falls by about 1/2 to 3/4 of a mile. Yep, it was wet, it was awesome and I am definately going back before the hills dry out.
Reviewed by David on 9/21/2008
Hiked Newton Canyon Sept. 20th 2008. As mentioned by others, quite a bit of poison oak. Red leaves were falling off the plant everywhere this time of year (sometimes growing through trees overhead as the trail snakes back on itself at places.) Sumac grows along the trail as well. The trail has some great views of a waterfall, however the streams and waterfall were all dry during this trip. Fun hike, but probably better when water is flowing.
Reviewed by DJS on 5/29/2007
Interesting terrain, and a good trail. A lot of poison oak/ivy. Nice creek crossing 2/3 in for the dogs to cool off it. Good look at the falls (if there was water). Many small trails snake off from the main one at the start, most don't go very far.
Reviewed by B. C. on 9/25/2006
This was by far one of the best Hikes I have been on. It was surreal. You immediately notice a temperature drop and are soon surrounded by ferns. You do not feel like you are in LA and you can hear a waterfall eventually. It is gorgeous. There was alot of poison ivy around the year I was hiking - if you are allergic make sure to have something to cover up with. This trail wasnt that bad...but down by the waterfall I remember needing to cover up. :) Dont be scared off though...it is worth it.
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