I had a very interesting hike today and I am excited to share with you! With Xena having the black coat, it is very important for me to find trails offering shades (at least the majority of the trail) in the summer and it is not that easy in southern California. While having my breakfast, I was searching for such trails on Alltrails.com and came across Bill Cull Trail in Monrovia. It sounded promising so I got us ready quickly as possible then headed out.
Monrovia is about 41 miles away from my house so my excitement had to be put on hold temporarily while sitting in the LA traffic. Once you get off the exit from I-210, there are signs for Canyon Park. Finding the trailhead was easy. Some people parked near the residential area and walked up to the trailhead to avoid paying a $5 parking fee in the park. I thought about it briefly then decided to forego. It’s already 11 AM and all. It is about a 1-mile walk on the pavement on uphill. No thanks. Xena would pass out by the time we get to the trailhead. Today being a weekday and all, there were plenty of parking spaces which was nice. When I went inside the Ranger Station to pay the fee, the lady ranger told me Xena can come in too. She said it’s a dog-friendly place. Love that!
The trailhead is little north of the Ranger Station and there are two trails, take the one on the left. For about 0.6 miles, it’s exposed to the sun. Xena was not happy and looked at me as if I was crazy. (“Sorry Z, it will get better”, I promised) I begged her to keep moving. The power of treats! The rest of the trails to the waterfalls was mostly shaded and pleasant.
It is a great hike for all levels. The trails are well maintained and the climb is gradual. It did not feel like we gained 725 feet in elevation. You have to cross over 3 little streams which are always fun!
We got to the waterfalls in an hour including a few stops due to Xena’s temper tantrums (I didn’t take a photo of it even though it was funny because I don’t think she would appreciate it) and stopping for water breaks. When we got to the waterfalls, we both were happy! 🙂 It’s time for snacks!
On the way back, we were about 0.6 miles from the trailhead (we were almost out of the shaded area) on Bill Cull Trail when we ran into a rattlesnake. Eeeeeeeekkkk!!! I screamed like a little girl! My gosh, just look at it! Wouldn’t you?? Luckily, Xena was on a leash and I was able to protect her.
We gave it plenty of space but it didn’t move for 5+ minutes. Being a sensible hiker and all, I googled what we are supposed to do. It said to avoid it if we can. Go around it…ok…hmm… Unfortunately, Bill Cull Trail is narrow and there was no space for us to go around the creature. Reluctantly, we turned around and had to retrace a little bit. When we met up with Waterfall Trail again, we turned right (turn left if you are going to the waterfalls) and headed toward the Nature Center and the picnic area. Thank goodness for the park guide I picked up at the Ranger Station earlier!! From there we walked to the Ranger Station which was less than a 1/4 mile. What an adventure! We hiked 3.57 miles due to the bit of retracing we did. Otherwise, it should’ve been 3 miles in total.
Details on the Hike:
- Trailhead: 1200 North Canyon Boulevard, Monrovia, CA
- Distance: 3 Miles RT
- Elevation Gain: 725 ft
- Restroom: One near the Ranger Station and another one near the Nature Center
- Notable: waterfalls, lizards, horses, rattlesnakes, kid-friendly