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Zuma Ridge/Canyon Loop

Intermediate/Difficult
 4.1 (18) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

A couple of hardy climbs on fire roads above Malibu will reward you with stunning ocean views and serene canyons.


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Map Key

11.1

Miles

17.9

KM

Loop

1,775' 541 m

High

116' 35 m

Low

2,696' 822 m

Up

2,718' 828 m

Down

9%

Avg Grade (5°)

35%

Max Grade (19°)

Dogs Leashed

Features Views · Wildlife

Overview

This loops features a mildly challenging climb up Zuma Ridge, then down and up the other side of Zuma Canyon. There are great ocean and virtually unspoiled canyon views along the way. There are also many options to extend your hike or deviate from this route.

Need to Know

This is a popular equestrian route so watch out for horses along the way. Aside from the watering spigot for horses at about mile 7.2, there isn't any potable water on this trail. The trail along the ridge is exposed, and it will be hot in summer. Bring water. The creek will likely only be flowing in winter and spring after a good rain.

There are multiple options to extend your hike and even connect up to the Backbone Trail at the Kanan-Dume Trailhead.

Description

A mildly challenging loop easily accessed from PCH in Malibu. There are two trailheads: one at the end of Busch Drive, the other Bonsall Drive, both with parking (take your pick.) This loop can be done in either direction.

Going clockwise, follow the Zuma Ridge Trail to where it meets the Zuma-Edison Fire Road. Turn right and go around the closed wire gate. Descend all the way to the end, passing the equestrian watering station, to the bottom where the trail will lead you across the creek on your right. This is the beginning of the second long climb.

After a long left-hand turn, you'll take the singletrack Zuma Canyon Connector Trail on your right. It is easy to miss but it is marked. If you find yourself going up the top of the ridge over Kanan-Dume, turn around. Follow the singletrack in a long, steady descent for about 2 miles then take a hard right up and over to the Canyon View Trail. Alternatively, you can also continue straight down to the Ocean View Trail. There are trail signs at this junction.

At the bottom, turn left then right to return to the Busch Drive Trailhead or hike straight ahead if you came from Bonsall Drive. The trails loop in this area so it is easy to get turned around. There are trail signs and probably more than a few people so you know you are close to the trailhead(s).

For more info, see Jerry Schad's "101 Hikes in Southern California".

Contacts

Shared By:

Perry Cortell

Trail Ratings

  4.1 from 18 votes

#2185

Overall
  4.1 from 18 votes
5 Star
33%
4 Star
44%
3 Star
17%
2 Star
6%
1 Star
0%
Recommended Route Rankings

#292

in California

#2,185

Overall
46 Views Last Month
4,365 Since Dec 5, 2016
Intermediate/Difficult

0%
5%
55%
20%
20%
0%

Photos

Traversing the Canyon View Trail overlooking Malibu and the Pacific Ocean
Dec 5, 2016 near Malibu, CA
Zuma-Edison Fire Road offers visitors great views of Zuma Canyon and the ocean beyond.
Dec 5, 2016 near Malibu, CA
The view from Zuma-Edison Fire Road looking east
Dec 5, 2016 near Malibu, CA

Weather


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Check-Ins

Oct 24, 2021
Marc Corona
Sep 22, 2019
Kristof Mattei
With breaks 4h53. All clear. 11.1mi — 4h 53m
Aug 11, 2019
E C
Dry and clear.
Sep 3, 2018
Terry Alvarez
Started at about 7:30 am.
Jul 29, 2018
Daniel Wong
11.1mi — 6h 30m
Jul 28, 2018
Don Sta
11.5mi
Jun 24, 2018
Robert Z
5h 00m
May 5, 2018
Jin Yang