Explore the best trails near Mt Baldy with detailed reviews, photos, trail maps, and driving directions curated by hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.
dogs on leash
I recommend trekking poles for this hike because there are portions where it is wet year round because of small feeder creeks crossing the trail. There are also some quite tall steps up and down where the poles help a lot. The elevation gain is constant but really picks up in the last half mile. It is also quite cold in November because most of the trail doesn't get any sun. A few places exist where the trail isn't really clear so be careful not to end up off trail by accident.
Hiked Thanksgiving day 2016. The hike was beautiful the entire way, the stream played the soundtrack nicely for the first leg of the hike and when you start going up the switchbacks turn and look back down the canyon or up to the peaks to get some good pictures. Just be careful as the trail gets narrow and there aren't any railings for protection. I get a little nervous when I see kids on this section or when meeting other hikers as many people don't follow proper trail etiquette. Had a little ice on the trail close to the saddle but a few moments of being cautious and I didn't slip. This was different from a spring hike where there was ice and snow early on and I didn't make it to the saddle due to bad trail conditions. Turned up to Timber Peak where there are some fantastic views. This is a great trail, those who do the upkeep in the trail have done a fantastic job. I'm sure the weather doesn't make it easy.
I came in at Maker Flats and hiked to the summit via the Baldy Bowl Trail. After summit I exited the Devils Backbone which was a very nice relief as the trail isn't steep, and is much flatter ground. I had a 40lb pack with enough provisions to last me 3 days. I camped at 8k feet the first night on the Baldy Bowl trail. My pack slowed me down and there are a few little sketchy areas on this trail where people have fallen to their death in winter icy, snowy conditions. I met one hiker, kid probably 18, or 19 on his way to the summit with only a tshirt on and said he had a flash light. I met him about 4pm at dusk. It would be dark by the time he summited, and I stopped him to make sure he had a flashlight at least. Weather conditions at the summit were about 30mph winds and the first mile of this trail were winds gusting 30/40mph, and it was cold.
I hiked in with a 40lb pack, and enough provisions for 3 days on the mountain. I started at Maker Flats, and it's a steep incline all the way up. I started my hike at 3pm so by 5pm it was dark. I found and helped rescue one lost hiker who lost the trail and ended up the top of the falls, and was stuck. I was able through our headlamps talk him back up to the trail. After I hiked on up in the dark to camp the night at the Sky Hut. It was literally the first flat ground I saw where I could throw my mattress and sleeping bag and bed down for the night. It got down to about 27 degrees. I was up by 7am and pushing for the summit. I reached the summit by noon, and was on my way back down via Devils Backbone which is a much flatter and easier hike even though there are some sketchy parts where people have fallen to their death. It's a much easier exit out. My pack severely slowed me down, but it's always a good feeling to know I have everything on my person I need to survive on the mountains for days at a time if need be.
Beautiful trail, it's not a walk in the park but the scenery is top notch. Started at 8:30 and got back around 1:35. That was moving somewhat casually. Overall it's worth doing it at least once if not more. I didn't give 5 star because it is not "as good as it gets" but it is "great" and I would like to do it again sometime.
Mount S. on Mt. San Antonio & Mt. Baldy Notch T...
my fav hike close to LA
10/24/16: We waited 30 minutes for the rain to stop then headed up toward the saddle via Chapman trail with plans to return Icehouse Canyon Trial. We started at 10:05 a.m. and finished around 2 p.m. The weather was nippy and the air wonderfully fresh! It was definitely fall, with all the beautiful colors! The Chapman trail can get narrow in spots(maybe 1' wide, but that don't last long). The narrow spots could be a problem for those fearful of heights. I feel it is safer to ascend the narrow portions than descend ( Up Chapman and down Icehouse). The fog got so bad that we decided to head down at the junction of Icehouse and Chapman rather than make it to the saddle. It was very windy and we could hardly see each other, and there would be no view. My Garmin GPS clocked it as 8.5 miles. I hike quite a bit, and I'm 64. I found the most difficult part to be the trail surface. There are some spots that are kind under foot and then it becomes rocky. I did not find it nearly as difficult as Mount Baldy (Ski hut trail- not Devil's Backbone). I definitely recommend boots with good tread, poles (they can save you from a nasty fall), plenty of snacks, water and perhaps an additional layer of clothing for the top when your sit to eat. Don't ever trust mountain weather this time of year...it can change quickly! I plan to go up again and try to make it to Cucamonga Peak before the snow flies! It is a beautiful hike.