Explore Angeles National Forest - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

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Hiked this trail for the first time this morning and it was great. Parking was a little thin by 8:30am on a Sunday but not completely full. Beautiful scenery and plenty of birdwatching to be done throughout this hike, especially near the trailhead. The trail was in good shape most of the way. It became a little more sketchy after the turn toward the summit (away from Claremont Wilderness Park). The sun kept us plenty warm, even in mid-November! Enjoy!

Always a great hike. Got there at 6:30am and got the last parking space. Go during the week if you have that option. It was a great day on top, no wind and sunny. Lots and lots of dogs today but they were all well behaved.

35 degrees at the summit. The Devil’s Backbone was the easier trail coming down.

I find the app description lacking so I’ve decided to put my own experiences here:

Difficulty: 6/10 (intermediate-hard)

Duration: 1.5 hrs up, 1 hr down

Distance: 5+ miles

Parking: lot at Islip saddle (need nature pass)

Views: 6.5/10; Antelope Valley, (N, NE), beautiful Angeles Forest Valley (W), Mt Wilson south, 350 degrees at peak, worth the climb!

Incline: 500 - 700 ft/mile, fairly steep, not easy

Technical: single track dirt/little sand

Equipment: hiking shoes (Merrill mesh), north face convertible pants, Underarmor T-shirt, (camelbak w water), leather gloves, north face wind breaker, cotton hoodie, cotton beanie

Weather: 40s, windy, gusty in spots

Shade: some shade

Environment: forest pines

Wildlife: birds

Bugs: none

Details: intermediate to steep uphill most of the way, PCT most of the way, branch off near the top

TIPs: near the top past PCT, you can go right up to short peak with cache log or left to MT Williamson.

PROS: a good work out and great views on the way up and at the peak.

CONS: none

Scott H (aka Swiper)

Beautiful hike, many river crossings and scenic sights. Bring lots of water and keep track of your steps because it’s easy to get lost since there’s almost not a single sign

I liked this hike but it was a bit more difficult than the trails I have been hiking lately. It was 46 degrees out and a strong wind when we began our hike at about 9 am. There was also ice on the side of the road on Angeles Crest Highway. The trip up to the summit of Mt. Williamson is almost entirely uphill. The PCT portion is in very good shape. The cutoff to the summit was a little bit more difficult to follow, slightly steeper, and a significant portion was over loose rocks and gravel; however, the views are worth the effort. I took off one star only because of the difficulty, for me, of the uphill climb.

One of the most beautiful hikes I have been on. It gets challenging at times but it is well worth it.

I clocked exactly 8 miles. I arrived at 6pm and the entrance to the parking was closed. I think they open at 8. We parked just before the first gate and walked .9 miles to the trail front. Look out for a yellow gate. Pretty hike. Seemed longer than you would expect.

hiking
5 days ago

Did this hike with some friends and my two dogs. A very challenging hike, pushed my limits. The weather was cold and windy at the summit. I'll do this hike again.

Beautiful hike, many river crossings and scenic sights. Bring lots of water and keep track of your steps because it’s easy to get lost since there’s almost not a single sign

Beautiful hike, many river crossings and scenic sights. Bring lots of water and keep track of your steps because it’s easy to get lost since there’s almost not a single sign

We hiked this trail on Saturday 11/10 and tracked about 12.3 miles RT. The trail is well marked relatively busy. For me, the altitude and gradient were very doable, but I got pretty tired at about 10 miles. The other hikers were very friendly and were willing to step aside on narrow parts of the trail. The view was a little smoky due to wildfires but the visibility was still decent. The weather is perfect this time of year!! Cool in the morning and at the top, so bring a light jacket. We got a late start at about 9am and had to walk about 8 minutes from our car to the trailhead. It took us 4 hours to summit and a little under 3 to get down. Overall tiring and fun hike! (And of course, stopped at the Buckhorn for nachos and beer on the way back ;-) )

I underestimated this hike a bit. It is definitely harder than I thought. But depending on the trail you take it could be easier. Landslides have removed part of the old trail so you have to travel on the dried up river bed which is fine. A lot of shade. Towards the end there was a clearing for sun but it is overall shady. Lots of river crossings. Bring some good boots or waterproof shoes. Some extra socks would be good too. Lots of fun! Very beautiful. Chances to see mountain goats which I saw none. Bungee jumping at the end. Expensive! $120. Wear some good pants. Wasn’t a lot of people there. There are some camp sites there as well. Next to a shooting range too.

Hiked this on Sunday 11/11/18. It was beautiful and not as hard as I expected. What made this beautiful hike difficult was the freezing cold winds.

Terrific challenge really pushed myself starting at 6:25, made the summit 7:55am
Breathtakingly views!

Do It People One Of The Best Hiking Trails

Fun, but hard! Don’t under estimate. From the peak you can see from the Mojave to the pacific. We could also see Catalina island, and even past Catalina island - to San Clemente island. STUNNING!

THE PEAK WITH THE BEST VIEW.

Very nice hike. Most of the hike was through the forest and therefore shaded. It was fun talking to the through hikers on the PCT. Spectacular views of the Mojave Desert and the ranges of the San Gabriels. Significant elevation gains at the beginning of the hike and as you approach the summit of Mt. Islip. The middle of the hike is much more gradual.

This hike is pretty easy compared to its rating. I did it at night, while recovering from a cold. Going uphill sick wasn’t a joy, but the views are worth it! Most of the trail is well maintained with little rock issues. Once you get to the last half a mile it becomes lose, but still walkable. If you are looking to work on your cardio or sweat out a cold, this is a good hike. I didn’t see “shortcuts,” but from the map, they look similar to the path. The part that would make this rated hard would be the uphill motion, but it’s not difficult. It just pumps your heart. This is good practice for anyone looking to strengthen their heart.

hiking
12 days ago

One of the best hikes I’ve been on in a while.

hiking
13 days ago

The views on the way up and especially at the top are simply outstanding. Overall this is a much easier hike than C2C, but the long steep ascent is total murder on the legs. Quads in particular get hit quite hard. Hiking poles would probably help give the legs a break. Going back down is a little tricky in spots, due to the loose sand and rocks, but nothing careful foot placement (and grabbing on to surrounding brush) can't solve. On a Sunday I saw lots of people of varying fitness levels at the summit, so this is a doable hike as long as you do it at a pace that's right for you. In terms of water, for me 5 liters was perfect.

I love this trail. It is never crowded. The views are most optimal. The switchbacks up Telegraph are gorgeous and the Peak is lovely with a small area between the rocks to grab a bite and look at Mt. Baldy. You can see the green ski hut and just wonder at the Bowl.

Phenomenal hike. Great views and very fresh air. Loved it.

Nice trail moderate to easy. Beautiful views.

This hike should be rated easy. It’s pretty much a strain hike with a little here and there incline. An excellent hike to take a dog. Lots of water through out the whole hike. It’s just long but not hard. However the drive to get there is a different story. It’s about 5 miles through winding rounds that you have to share with a lot of bicyclists. It’s only a two lane road. Which feels like forever when your trying to leave.

This is an awesome hike that I have done and loved so much. However today it is closed due to a fire!!!

This is great training hike for those wanting to do bigger peaks. SoCal has several extreme hikes that reach the tallest summits that are way more demanding. So this is a great hike to dial your gear and strategy for success.

This hike was intense. I will for sure do it again. The view is amazing .

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