Leading family and friends up a two-mile trail into Angeles National Forest on Saturday, Sheree Reed had only one goal in mind: to see Switzer Falls.
Of the 28 waterfall hikes in the Los Angeles area, Reed said Switzer Falls is the most family-friendly and, unlike the seasonal waterfalls in Malibu, Switzer flows all year.
“I knew [the forest] had been burned, but this area hasn’t really been affected that much,” Reed said. “This one is intact.”
With just a 10-mile drive from La Cañada up the recently reopened Angeles Crest Highway and a right turn at Angeles Forest Highway, picnickers and hikers can find the newly paved Switzer Falls Picnic Area parking lot off to the right. Due to its moist, riparian environment, the popular picnic area and hike to the falls was one of the few places in the forest left untouched by the 2009 Station fire.
Like Reed’s waterfall meet-up group, hikers, bicyclists and camping enthusiasts from the La Cañada community and beyond have returned to limited recreational use of popular forest destinations since the June 3 reopening of Angeles Crest Highway.