Last Chance Canyon - Red Rock Canyon State Park

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4.7/5 (14 reviews)
Randsburg, California (Kern County)
Last Updated: 12/07/2018
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Trail Information

Highlights

Only 2 hours north of Los Angeles, lies one of the most amazing collections of canyons in the El Paso Mountain range. Last Chance Canyon in the Red Rock State Park is one such canyon. Known for its steep canyon walls, and challenging rock obstacles, Last Chance Canyon has continued to be a favorite among intermediate to advanced off-road enthusiasts. Several other 4x4, motorcycle, hiking trails, and historic sites can be accessed from this trail. The Dutch Cleanser Mines, Bickel Camp, Cudahy Camp, Burro Schmidt Tunnel, Holland Camp and Holly Ash Mine are just a few of the attractions.

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Trail Reviews

4.7/5 (14)
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Open
Visited: 02/17/2024
Difficulty Accuracy: Spot On

Just got back from running this with a group of 7 Jeeps. The rains from the last storm definitely washed out the trail but it's definitely doable. We had one 4dr on 33s but everyone else was on 37s. The 4dr on 33s was able to take bypasses. A lot of the bypasses are washed out though. Really fun trail and everyone made it through without damage.
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950
Open
Rated 4/5
Visited: 12/31/2023
Difficulty Accuracy: Harder

Solid fun trail. Trail is rutted and obstacles were challenging. Some of the bypasses are washed/rutted out. The first 2.7miles were the hardest and it took us about 2.5-3hrs to get through. The guys in the 80 series w/ 6" lift and 39s" tires had the easier time and said it was a 3/10 (comparing to the Rubicon trail). The folks in the 100 series w/2" lift and 33s" tires said it was a 7/10 (had to stack rocks to clear the differential). The jeep guys did well since they were on 35s" and 37s". Rock sliders is a must. I would not take a long wheel based truck here.
Trail Review: Last Chance Canyon - Red Rock Canyon State Park - Jon Lam
Trail Review: Last Chance Canyon - Red Rock Canyon State Park - Jon Lam
Open
Rated 4/5
Visited: 05/28/2023
Difficulty Accuracy: Harder

Great trail! We wanted to try this trail before it got too hot and I am glad we did! This trail was definitely harder than I was expecting. I am not sure if it was because of the rain this last winter, but there were a lot more obstacles than a "3" level trail. Even the bypass areas were a challenge for the less experienced folks in our group. I would definitely not take a stock vehicle on this. You're going to want skid plates and at least a mild lift and 31" + tires. There were a handful of significant off camber drops even on the bypass. The most significant was on the bypass for the v notch. I don't have any lockers and I only thought they would have been handy on the very steep hill climb area just after Cudahy Camp. The Cudahy Camp area is technically closed, so if you bypass this area you will avoid the hill climb. The gates were open and you could tell that a lot of people still went through the area. I highly recommend you also visit the talc mines and Burro Schmidt tunnel while you are in the area!
Trail Review: Last Chance Canyon - Red Rock Canyon State Park - Anthony Arroyo
Trail Review: Last Chance Canyon - Red Rock Canyon State Park - Anthony Arroyo
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4900
Open
Rated 5/5
Visited: 04/01/2023
Difficulty Accuracy: Harder

I had a blast on this trail! Super fun, even though I did take a few of the bypasses. I would definitely say this trail is harder than a 3, its at least a 4, maybe even a 5. The obstacles themselves aren't super technical, but there are lots of them, for a non-experienced driver, it would be overwhelming. I would absolutely not take a stock 4x4 on the trail, the first half of the trail is basically one long rock garden, with the bypasses only being slightly less rocky. I used my locker often, I scraped on my skid plate multiple times and was on my sliders once or twice, and still managed to get caught on my rear diff a few times. Someone in a stock 4x4 with no sliders or skids would probably damage their vehicle in some way. That being said, I will absolutely run this trail again, it was a lot of fun, and the scenery in Red Rock state park was beautiful.
Trail Review: Last Chance Canyon - Red Rock Canyon State Park - JT Carey
Open
Visited: 03/17/2023
Difficulty Accuracy: Harder

We headed up Last Chance on St. Paddy's day and followed fresh tracks all the way up. It was my second time running the trail and I find the overall experience more challenging than a TRAILS OFFROAD intermediate rating normally brings. I don't think we were in any of the optional places, but the prolific rains this year have probably rearranged some of the rocks. It's a true testament to the strength of the modern tires as so much of the trail can be called a rock garden. It's very stunningly beautiful there right now as the park is usually pretty dry and the plant life is hibernating in the heat. It was very green with some small flowers at the south trailhead!
Trail Review: Last Chance Canyon - Red Rock Canyon State Park - Jeff Siegel
Trail Review: Last Chance Canyon - Red Rock Canyon State Park - Jeff Siegel
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