Blog San Bernardino National Forest Hiking Trails The Best LA Hikes

The Best Deep Creek Hot Springs Hike

In This Guide
  • Turn by Turn Directions & Video To Deep Creek Hot Springs
  • Free Path or Pay Path?
  • Deep Creek Hot Springs Trail Maps
  • Easy methods to Get to the Deep Creek Hot Springs Path
  • How Protected Is the Water?
Distance5.6 miles (9 km)
Hike Timethree Hours (Complete)
Complete Ascent (?)1,500 ft (457m)
Highest Elevationfour,370 ft (1332m)
Fees & PermitsNone
Canine PleasantLeashed
Park WebsiteSan Bernardino Nationwide Forest
Park Telephone909-382-2600

In contrast to the route from Bowen Ranch, this Deep Creek Hot Springs hike takes you on the free and less-traveled Bradford Ridge Path to the popular scorching springs. The hike along the Bradford Ridge Path is a deal with in itself, winding its method alongside lush valleys tucked into the pristine wilderness of San Bernardino National Forest till it joins the PCT, the place you hike above Deep Creek. And then, in fact, you arrive Deep Creek Hot Springs, a collection of jacuzzi-temperature pools subsequent to the river. The scene at Deep Creek Hot Springs may be fascinating, to say the least, however plan your journey right and you may take pleasure in a phenomenal hike and a pleasant soak without any craziness.

Methods to Get to Deep Creek Hot Springs

There are few ways to hike to Deep Creek Hot Springs, so don’t just put “Deep Creek Hot Springs” in your GPS as you’re more likely to find yourself some other place. These instructions will convey you to the Bradford Ridge Path trailhead. This trailhead is a bit simpler to succeed in from most of LA and Orange County because you possibly can come up by way of Arrowhead Lake; you don’t have to go across the mountains as you do for Bowen Ranch.

Use this trailhead tackle:
Bradford Ridge Path / Deep Creek Trailhead, CA-173, Lake Arrowhead, California

Parking is restricted to the aspect of the street, however there’s an honest quantity of shoulder within walkable distance to the trailhead. Just don’t block the street and you’ll be okay.

Deep Creek Hot Springs Directions 2There’s parking on the aspect of the street and more areas additional up the place the paved section of CA-173 ends. It does get full right here, so that you may need to walk a bit on the street should you can’t find a spot shut.Deep Creek Hot Springs Directions 3Search for this path and sign on the aspect of the street. You’ll should climb over the guardrail.

Trailhead Notes

  • There are not any loos at the trailhead.
  • Don’t depart luggage or electronics out in your automotive, cover the whole lot. There are have been automotive break-ins.
  • If there’s snow and ice, affirm that CA-173 is open before you allow.
  • You’re fairly close to a gun range at the trailhead. Typically you’ll hear gun photographs through the starting of the hike.

Why I Like Bradford Ridge Higher Than Bowen Ranch

Party Guy At Deep CreekIf you wish to do beer bongs and ludes, Bowen Ranch is perhaps a greater transfer for you. Photograph losangelesswimmin

If you wish to do the hike from Bowen Ranch, you definitely can. It’s a shorter route and a much bigger, simpler to comply with trail. I’ve executed it prior to now however I can say for sure the Bradford Ridge Path is far nicer and more of a “hike hike.”

The Bowen Ranch route has a number of downsides:

  • Money solely parking payment
  • Plenty of crowds, including most people who come here to social gathering
  • Closed at night time
  • Trails are dirtier (together with not-so-graceful rest room leave-behinds)
  • The proprietor, Mike Castro, offers with loads of jerks, and isn’t all the time in one of the best temper

If you want to do the hike from Bowen Ranch, here’s a information.

In case you choose to do the hike on Bradford Ridge Path, please deal with the trail, land, and guidelines with respect. Don’t turn this hike right into a scorching mess.

Gear For the Hike

Although near Lake Arrowhead, this can be a high-desert hike. It will get cold within the winter, scorching in the summertime (typically over 100F). Deliver loads of water (like 2-3L) and sunscreen. The route is completely uncovered. Trekking poles assistance on the steep part of the hike. And naturally, you’d be sensible to pack in a showering go well with and towel if you wish to hit the water.

Maintain your eyes open for rattlesnakes on the bottom too.

Deep Springs Hot Springs Hike Temporary

Slackline At Deep Creek Hot SpringsYou may need to rethink falling off the slack-line or jumping within the water after reading this part.


  • Deep Creek is probably the most biologically numerous drainage in all of San Bernardino National Forest. It’s the place the mountains meet the desert (they usually meet Deep Creek), so there’s a lot of wildlife and vegetation.
  • Deep Creek can also be designated as a Wild Trout Stream, and you may often see them swimming round within the water.
  • Another resident of the world is the endangered Southwestern Arroyo Toad, which burrows within the sand through the day and comes out at night time.

The Scene

  • The scorching springs are clothing elective. In case you’re not snug around naked individuals, don’t go.
  • Typically the thought of naked individuals attracts different more creepy bare individuals who like to absorb the sights.
  • You’ll be able to wear your bathing go well with and not using a drawback.
  • Individuals come right here to get together as properly. Meaning consuming and probably drug use.
  • In the spring you’ll get an honest quantity of PCT through-hikers overnighting right here.
  • A gaggle of devoted volunteers comes right here frequently to look after the swimming pools and clear up. Be a mensch and pack out trash.
  • I often depart at sunrise to get to the springs early. I never have an issue with rowdy crowds then, just a few people having fun with the quiet. I extremely advocate you do the hike this approach to keep away from any craziness.


  • You’re not allowed to camp within 1 mile of Deep Creek Hot Springs, although individuals do. No open fires or stoves allowed. No glass containers inside a mile.
  • Individuals break these guidelines on a regular basis. For those who select to interrupt the principles, know that if a ranger finds you, you’ll get a high-quality and need to hike out (probably at night time).
  • In case you break the principles, pack your crap out, be respectful, and don’t start a forest hearth. Don’t destroy this lovely place please.

Risks in the Water

  • Because of the popularity of Deep Creek Hot Springs, the fecal coliform counts in the scorching springs are the very best measured in San Bernardino Nationwide Forest (informed to me by a ranger). Don’t get the water in your mouth if attainable.
  • Oh, and there’s a brain-eating amoeba, main amoebic meningoencephalitis (PAM). The way it works is that the amoeba swims up your nostril and eats your brain. The excellent news is that it’s very uncommon. The dangerous news is that the majority instances are fatal. And a fatality has occurred after contracting it at Deep Creek Hot Springs. My recommendation is to benefit from the water with out submerging your head.
  • Deep Creek can flood with heavy rains and snow melt.

Deep Creek Hot Springs Path Map

Deep Creek Hot Springs Hike Map Downloads

Download the Hike GPX File

View a Printable PDF Hike Map

Right here’s How I Navigate The Hike

Individuals ask me all the time, so here you go. I have a couple of backups which you could see on my gear page, however usually I exploit a mixture of those instruments.

Fenix 5x Hiking Nav

Garmin Fenix Map Watch

This thing does the whole lot: maps, GPX tracks, compass, barometer, altitude, heart price, blood oxygen, fitness tracking, sleep tracking, and the record goes on. I maintain a GPX route on the watch so I can shortly look down and ensure I’m in the proper place.

Fenix Costs & Critiques

My In-Depth Evaluate

Gaia Gps

Gaia GPS

I load a number of varieties of offline maps onto my smartphone once I have to work together with the map in detail. I additionally use it before my hikes as a planning device for all types of things, including finding free authorities land to camp on. The benefits are many, I highly advocate it.

Gaia GPS Benefits

HikingGuy Low cost

Don’t just rely on a cellphone, especially in case you are climbing in the backcountry.

Deep Creek Hot Springs Hike ElevationThe hike on the Bradford Ridge Path has you descending to Deep Creek in about 2.6 miles. Save power for the climb back out, which is a troublesome uphill at first after which a mellow up-and-down back to the trailhead.Deep Creek Hot Springs Hike 3d MapYou’ll be able to clearly see the steep descent on the end on this 3D view.

Deep Creek Hot Springs Hike Instructions

Video Directions

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Flip By Turn Instructions

Deep Creek Hot Springs Directions 4Start the hike on the path by the sign.Deep Creek Hot Springs Directions 5Head by means of the gate and on the larger path that bends left and down.Deep Creek Hot Springs Directions 6The trail is a bit sandy at first but straightforward to comply with.Deep Creek Hot Springs Directions 7Quickly the path follows Kinley Creek, which is on your left. Within the spring the world is an explosion of colourful flowers and fauna; it’s a great time to do the hike.Deep Creek Hot Springs Directions 8Stay on the primary trail. There are a number of little aspect trails to viewpoints, however Bradford Ridge Path is usually straightforward to comply with.Deep Creek Hot Springs Directions 9After a few mile or so the trail starts winding away from Kinley Creek.Deep Creek JunctionIf you get to this junction, make the onerous proper and continue alongside the fence. The path straight is one other route down however has turn out to be overgrown these days. Both approach you’re taking, you’ll attain the PCT.Deep Creek Hot Springs Directions 11Shortly after that junction you’ll go through the opening within the fence. This starts the steep downhill section.Deep Creek Hot Springs Directions 12There’s a cool little tent website shortly after the gate.Deep Creek Hot Springs Directions 13Now you could have a steep downhill for some time. Have good footwear, take your time, and don’t be scared to go down on your butt. I do it on a regular basis.Deep Creek Hot Springs Directions 14After the steep downhill you’ll be in Family Canyon. Maintain heading down.Deep Creek Hot Springs Directions 15You made it to the PCT, virtually there! Make the best towards Mexico on the PCT. In case you by chance make the left, it can take you to Canada.Deep Creek Hot Springs Directions 16The PCT follows Deep Creek, which shall be in your left.Deep Creek Hot Springs Directions 17If you reach the intersection, bear left and go straight to the seashore/water space, you’re at the scorching springs.Deep Creek Hot Springs SignThe massive sandy space has a nice sign that people seize selfies with.Deep Creek Hot Springs Directions 21There’s a small sandy space where some individuals camp, however they’re not imagined to.Deep Creek Hot Springs Directions 22Here you’re, the recent springs. There’s a scorching spring proper in front of you right here, and there are some extra scattered across the website.Deep Creek Hot Pool LocationsA few of the swimming pools are again to the left once you attain the creek. A number of the greater ones are circled here in pink. The springs differ in temperature but normally are like a jacuzzi (100-105F). You can even swim in the river which is usually chilly. Again, depart early to keep away from the crowds. It’s not uncommon to have the pools be utterly full with soakers.

That’s it, you’re on the scorching springs. From here you simply head back the best way you got here. You’ll need to climb that steep hill, however when you clear that, it’s fairly straightforward going again to the trailhead.

Did one thing change on this hike? In that case, please contact me and let me know. I’ll replace the guide.

In the event you see trash on the path, please decide it up and carry it out. Be a superb egg and follow no trace rules.

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