Trail Run Project Logo

Zuma Ridge/Canyon Loop

  4.0 ( 11 ) Favorite


11.1 mile 17.9 kilometer loop
79% Runnable


Ascent: 2,696' 822 m
Descent: -2,718' -828 m
High: 1,775' 541 m
Low: 116' 35 m


Avg Grade: 9% (5°)
Max Grade: 35% (19°)


Driving directions Take a virtual tour
Zoom in to see details
Map Key

Trail shared by Perry Cortell

A couple of hardy climbs on fire roads above Malibu will reward you with stunning ocean views and serene canyons.

Perry Cortell

Features Views · Wildlife


This loops features a mildly challenging climb up Zuma Ridge, then down and up the other side of Zuma Canyon. There are great ocean and virtually unspoiled canyon views along the way. There are also many options to extend your run or deviate from this route.

Need to Know

This is a popular equestrian route so watch out for horses along the way. Aside from the watering spigot for horses at about mile 7.2, there isn't any potable water on this trail. The trail along the ridge is exposed, and it will be hot in summer. Bring water. The creek will likely only be flowing in winter and spring after a good rain.

There are multiple options to extend your run and even connect up to the Backbone Trail at the Kanan-Dume Trailhead.

Runner Notes

There is nothing technical. The loop is 60% fire roads with the rest on well-groomed singletrack.


A mildly challenging loop easily accessed from PCH in Malibu. There are two trailheads: one at the end of Busch Drive, the other Bonsall Drive, both with parking (take your pick.) This loop can be done in either direction.

Going clockwise, follow the Zuma Ridge Trail to where it meets the Zuma-Edison Fire Road. Turn right and go around the closed wire gate. Descend all the way to the end, passing the equestrian watering station, to the bottom where the trail will lead you across the creek on your right. This is the beginning of the second long climb.

After a long left-hand turn, you'll take the singletrack Zuma Canyon Connector Trail on your right. It is easy to miss but it is marked. If you find yourself going up the top of the ridge over Kanan-Dume, turn around. Follow the singletrack in a long, steady descent for about 2 miles then take a hard right up and over to the Canyon View Trail. Alternatively, you can also continue straight down to the Ocean View Trail. There are trail signs at this junction.

At the bottom, turn left then right to return to the Busch Drive Trailhead or run straight ahead if you came from Bonsall Drive. The trails loop in this area so it is easy to get turned around. There are trail signs and probably more than a few people so you know you are close to the trailhead(s).

For more info, see Jerry Schad's "101 Hikes in Southern California".

Run this trail?

We need help with the following missing trail information:

Flora & Fauna, History & Background

Is something wrong? Let us know. Have photos to share? Help fellow runners know what's here.


Rate This Featured Run

Rate Quality

   Clear Rating

Rate Difficulty

Share This Run

Check In


Aug 19, 2018
Matt Uramoto

Trail Ratings

  4.0 from 11 votes


  4.0 from 11 votes
5 Star
4 Star
3 Star
2 Star
1 Star
Featured Run Rankings


in California


29 Views Last Month
2,257 Since Dec 5, 2016



Traversing the Canyon View Trail overlooking Malibu and the Pacific Ocean
Dec 5, 2016 near Malibu, CA
Zuma-Edison Fire Road offers visitors great views of Zuma Canyon and the ocean beyond.
Dec 5, 2016 near Malibu, CA
The view from Zuma-Edison Fire Road looking east
Dec 5, 2016 near Malibu, CA


Trail Run Project is part of the REI Co-op family,
where a life outdoors is a life well lived.

Shop REI Running