Summit Mt. Baden-Powell

8 miles 2800 ft gain  - Out-and-Back Trail

Added by Brenda Lin

Summit one the most popular mountain climbs in the San Gabriel Mountains. Earn amazing views of the San Gabriel high country. Hike amongst 2000 year old limber pines. 8 miles roundtrip with 2800' elevation gain.

This well maintained and well traveled trail is a popular route with day hikers, backpackers, and Pacific Crest Trail through hikers. Since the trail is on the face of the mountain, snow may linger late into the season.

The Pacific Crest Trail is clearly marked on the western corner of the Vincent Gulch parking lot. The trail is mostly shaded by pines as it switchbacks up the mountain at moderate but consistent grade. The only water available is at 1.5 miles from the trailhead at Lamel Spring. As the trail tops 8000', the views open up to the north towards the Mojave Desert. At 9000', the forest thins and old gnarled limber pines dot the landscape. A short unmarked use trail around the 3.9 mile mark will lead you to a small ancient grove of limber pines, some of which have been sitting on this windswept ridge for thousands of years.

After soaking in the views, continue on the main trail where you'll reach a junction. The summit of Mt. Baden-Powell veers to the left of the Pacific Crest Trail. It is quite obvious as it looms ahead of you. Make sure to stop and visit the "Wally" Waldron tree, a seemingly hardy limber pine estimated to be more than 2000 years old. From here, some short but steep switchbacks takes you to the summit. Take in the expansive 360 degree views of mountain, desert, and lowland scenery. You may even see the faint skyline of downtown Los Angeles on the clearest day, especially after a rain or snow storm. After taking in all the views, retrace you steps back to the trailhead.

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Tags

Photography
Hiking
Easy Parking
Forest
Scenic

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One Of Best Hikes I've Ever Done

I went up this mountain in early December, and it was amazing to see the transition from desert at the bottom of the mountain to the two-foot deep snow all the way to the summit. Start early and take your time.

First Backpacking Trip

Absolutely beautiful views. I went early November and there was snow and ice on the shaded side of the mountain. I went just after a rain and hail storm and I could see Catalina island and ships in the harbor. Be careful of altitude sickness. Bring a flash light if you feel like watching a beautiful sunset.

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