UPDATE (May 5, 2016): Public access to the Corral Canyon Cave (aka the Jim Morrison Cave) has been closed after California State Parks officials said the graffiti is out of control.
Deep in the heart of Malibu, you’ll find a cave covered in pink paint and graffiti. There’s a rumor going around that Jim Morrison, lead singer of The Doors, used to come here to escape and write.
To really appreciate this space and its alleged history, it’s important to know about the rebellious and poetic soul of Jim Morrison.
He became a rock and roll superstar with bouts of unpredictable and unusual behavior, like that time producers on the Ed Sullivan Show didn’t want him to sing the line “Girl, we couldn’t get much higher” (gasp) but he did it anyway because he was Jim Morrison.
While he may have been drinking and doing a lot of drugs like several other rock stars we know, Morrison was also highly intelligent and a writer of poetry.
According to Bio, his goal as a songwriter was to “open the minds of those who listened to his words, to encourage them to leave behind the familiar in search of the new.”
He was a rocker that wanted to leave a lasting impression on the world with his eternal poetry.
“Nothing else can survive a holocaust but poetry and songs,” he told Rolling Stone in a 1969 interview. “No one can remember an entire novel. No one can describe a film or a piece of sculpture, a painting. But so long as there are human beings, songs and poetry can continue.”
Today, there are dozens of online claims that he came here to evade his rockstar life in Los Angeles and write.
While I can’t find any credible sources as proof, the Jim Morrison Cave certainly feels like a place to escape.
He supposedly wrote many of his lyrics on the walls (which, even if he did or didn’t, the walls have since been covered with paint). There’s even a claim that he carved a creepy skull into the sandstone floor, which is still there today.
HOW TO GET THERE:
Just so you know, it’s not the easiest place to find. Bring water, sunscreen, a Doors music playlist and an adventurous attitude.
From Pacific Coast Highway, turn onto Corral Canyon Road by the 76 station. You’ll drive for 5 miles along a windy road going up, up, up with incredible views of the mountains and Pacific Ocean. Keep going until the road transitions into a dirt road, which will lead you to a free parking lot.
Now, take the trail BEHIND you that leads to a lot of cool sandstone rocks. NOT the trail pictured in the photo above.
You’ll walk just under a mile until you see an overgrown trail on the left side, which leads to a large rock with graffiti (facing the valley side). Follow the trail to the left side of the large rock.
The cave is in there.
If you reach this rock thing signaling aliens, you’ve gone too far.
Watch the video on my Facebook page for a better look at accessing the cave and the view from inside.
Happy trails. And long live the Lizard King.