Bailey Canyon Nature Trail: Hike to a Locals Only Falls

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0.9 Miles


1 Hr





Elevation Gain

 328 ft

  • Dogs allowed on a leash
  • Out & Back Trail
  • Restrooms available at the parking lot

Bailey Canyon Nature Trail takes you to a rarely flowing waterfall which has been kept a secret by the locals for a very long time. However, if you pick the right day to visit, you might just see it flowing.

PLEASE READ: This waterfall is a gem to all the people who live nearby. There is no trash or graffiti, and there are many signs of little people playing in the area (children), such as the swing and branch teepees. Please, for their sake, keep the place between yourself and those who you know will respect the area. Thank you 🙂

How to See Bailey Canyon Falls When It’s Flowing

Bailey Canyon Falls is rarely flowing, even during spring. The only time there is water at the falls is the day it rains and the day immediately after.

However, I HIGHLY advice against visiting the area while it’s raining, as my buddy and I were nearly hit by rockslides during our visit. Instead, I recommend visiting the day immediately after it rains.

A local woman told us a story about multiple people drowning in the debris reservoir during flash floods. Play it safe, and wait until it stops raining.

Bailey Canyon Nature Trail Map

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Bailey Canyon Nature Trail Elevation Profile

Download Printable PDF Map

Bailey Canyon Nature Trail Directions

Click the link HERE to be redirected to the Bailey Canyon Nature Trail parking lot via Google Maps.

Bailey Canyon Nature Trail

The nature trail begins in a little parking lot tucked into the foothills of the lovely town known as Sierra Madre.

bailey canyon nature trail parking lot

Since we visited while it was raining, the water was flowing directly into the parking lot, and the crystal clear droplets poured all around us from the tall pine trees.

Surprisingly, one of the houses which borders the road had a waterfall raging down about 15-20ft (if only Bailey Falls had the same flow).

Although it wasn’t raining too hard, you can see from the picture below why flash floods can be a huge danger.


Right before entering the canyon, you’ll notice a bridge traversing the debris reservoir.

I didn’t add it on the the map as it’s a detour, but I highly recommend checking it out.

It leads to a little flats covered by the forest canopy, as well as a couple of shelters and a swing.

Notice the area (and all of Bailey Canyon Wilderness Park for that matter) is extremely well preserved. I didn’t see a single piece of trash anywhere on the ground.

Head back the way you came to return to the main route.

Detour Ends. Back on The Main Trail

As you venture into the canyon, the creek will be located to your right and below you.

However, the deeper you trek into the canyon, the narrower the cliff walls become, to the point where the trail essentially becomes the creek bed, leaving you completely exposed to rock slides and flash floods.

The falls is located in a nice little rocky corner. You can see the Bailey Canyon Falls is barely flowing, even in a storm!

Based on some of the tree trunks at the falls, it seemed like someone was bucking a tree (chopping firewood).

A second cascade is located to the left and resembles a curved playground slide. Unfortunately, it had even less water.

Bailey Canyon Falls measures roughly 30ft. To be able to see it flowing was a real treat, and I hope you get to do the same!



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Hello, There!

I’m Phillip, and just like you, I feel very passionate about California and the outdoors. After many years of exploring amazing and hidden places, I thought I’d share them with you. Life goes by fast so get out there and enjoy it.  

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