Blackstar Canyon - Hidden falls of Orange County
by John Nguyen
(Tustin, CA, United States)
Blackstar Canyon Falls
About a year ago, I was given a newspaper article describing these hidden falls in Orange County.
The article itself did not specify the exact location, so I did some hunting online. Based on random websites and blogs, I managed to calculate the directions to this spot.
Let me just say that this was NOT an easy hike. You are looking at a solid 3 to 3.5 hours of steady hiking, then boulder hopping.
HOWEVER, wait a few after the rain, the waterfall is well worth the hike! Surprise your friends and take a picture or video with yourself in it. Nobody will believe this is in Orange County!
Directions to Blackstar Canyon Falls
Coming from LA:
Take the 5 south and exit Chapman in Orange, CA. Go left into Santiago Canyon. The street turns into Hwy S18/Santiago Canyon Rd. Take the left onto Silverado Canyon Rd then the first left onto Black Star Canyon Rd. Park at the end of the road where the road block is located. From there begins the hike.
Coming from San Diego:
Take the 5 north and exit El Toro Rd. Go right and follow all the way into Santiago Canyon. The street turns into Santiago Canyon Rd. Take the right onto Silverado Canyon Rd then the first left onto Black Star Canyon Rd. Park at the end of the road where the road block is located. From there begins the hike.
Follow the dirt road that will lead you to the squatter camp which is roughly an hour's hike. There will be a larger house on the right. Walk past that. You will approach a set of large concrete pipes. THIS IS IMPORTANT, you take a right that leads down to the creek. Follow that creek and that will lead you to the falls. Be warned, there are many boulders that you will need to overcome to make it to the falls, but it's definitely worth it.