Bridge to Nowhere via East Fork Trail

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Angeles National Forest

Bridge to Nowhere via East Fork Trail is a 9.5 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Azusa, California that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Length9.5 miElevation gain1,246 ftRoute typeOut & back
Dogs on leashHikingForestRiverViewsWaterfallRockyNo shadeHistoric siteFee
Description
Waypoints (17)
Contact
Tips
Getting There

This trail requires an Adventure Pass. This pass can be bought at many small shops in the area. Several hikers have reported getting ticketed when parking along the road leading up the the trailhead. Please note that although the area/bridge are private property, it is open to hikers. This trip takes you along the banks of the east fork of the San Gabriel River. While the river banks are wooded and quite lovely, most of the trail traverses the rim above the high water line and most of your travel is through scrub brush. The highlight of the hike is a mysterious bridge built over the east fork in 1936, which has no road leading to it. Actually, in the 1930's a road did lead to it, but was swept away by floods in 1938. There are some small trails that lead down to the stream just after you cross the bridge. This is a stunning setting with shear pink tinted granite walls, roaring cascades, and the lovely bridge in the background. Route can be a bit challenging with many day use trails mixed in with the main trail, washed out sections of trail, and over a half dozen stream crossings (bring waterproof boots even when the water is low). There are many swimming holes. The trail along the East Fork of the San Gabriel River to the Bridge to Nowhere is not only one of the best trails in the San Gabriel Mountains, but it's also one of the most unique hiking experiences you'll ever have. After you leave the crowded (and overused) trailhead area, you will increasingly find yourself awed by the rugged canyons deep in the Sheep Mountain Wilderness. Multiple river crossings and shaded glens await you on this trek, with the final destination a 130-foot concrete span bridge leftover from an attempt to build a road north through the canyon. Most of the road is gone now, but the bridge still stands - and is full of bungee jumpers on the weekends. A short trail down from the bridge leads to some top-notch swimming holes, making this a perfect hike on a hot, summer day. Plan on getting your feet wet and bring bug repellent.

Angeles National Forest (626) 335-1251

Get to the trailhead early, especially on hot days. The San Gabriel River is a very popular spot for locals to cool off, and the parking may fill up quickly. Although dogs are allowed on this trail, users have reported that there are many rocky sections that may be hard on dog's paws. This trail has a LOT of river crossings. Wear boots you don't mind getting soaked, or even better - wear rugged water sandals instead. Hike in a bathing suit to enjoy the cold swimming holes near the Bridge to Nowhere and pack a picnic lunch before your hike back!

From Interstate 10 or the 210 freeway, exit on Azusa and head north 10 miles or so, paralleling the San Gabriel Dam on your right. Turn right on East Fork Road and continue 8 more miles to the East Fork Station, where the road dead ends. Note that if you go around a hairpin 180 degree turn on East Fork Road, you missed the road into the Sheep Mountain Wilderness. The trail head is short distance down an obvious service road.

Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (3,331)
Photos (3,538)
Recordings (2,550)
Completed (7,655)
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Tyler Watson
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Hiking

Hit the trailhead at 6am and reached the bridge by 9am. Nice hike. Water crossings were manageable, but it’s often hard to figure out where the trail is. Non-trail areas look like the trail, and there are time where the trail doesn’t look like the trail. There are arrows and markings throughout the hike, but there could be more in some of the water crossing sites.

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mark keidel
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Hiking
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Julio Hernández
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Nature tripsGreat!Private property

I really liked this trail, the 50 min drive from DTLA was worth it. I begun relatively late (10:45 am) you should get there early though. I was lucky that I didn't get a ticket after parking on the side of the road #YOLO. Water shoes are nice to have, I didn't need a hiking pole but it would have been helpful. Bungee jumping available at the bridge for $120, I got my adrenaline rush for free from taking a dip in the freezing river water.

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Adriel Robles
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HikingGreat!

Great hike, definitely keep an eye out for the red arrows to follow the actual trail but if you like trailing the river, go right ahead lol

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Yvette Murray
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HikingGreat!

Beautiful views as you hike. Start early to avoid the heat and crowds

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Ruben Flores
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HikingRocky

Grate hike. Would not recommend for small children. To long and difficult with crossing water lots of times and rocky. You will have no cell phone service  once you are up there. So would recommend downloading map or printing out before going up to hike. Can go off trail easy on this hike. Also hiking stick is highly recommend for this hike and water proof shoes of boots. Be careful wear you park once you get to parking lot. It’s small and fills up quickly. Cops give tickets to cars pulled over to the side of the road so park at your own risk.

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John Wensel
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HikingGreat!

Great hike, went out past the bridge for another 3 miles before turning back, saw a family of mountain goats, not a lot of direct sunlight during the hike witch was nice, bridge is underwhelming but the hike is the real attraction here, I recommend bringing a water filter with you, who doesn’t like cold water to drink on a hike?

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David Gonzalez
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Hiking
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Lena Mireles
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Hiking

Didn't get shoes wet! Crossed 6 water crossings in (and same out).

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Juan Zambrano
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Hiking

It’s a 12.5 hike not 9 as it states. The hike was great, amazing, crossing streams.

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Nick Wright
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Hiking

Water is currently low enough to keep your feet dry the entire hike as long as you have decent balance and some poles . Took the river pretty much the entire way back, which has its own mini trails but will require many crossings and some minor scrambling. If you take the river there or back be sure to add at least an extra hour each way

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Rusty Griner
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Hiking
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Nox Rose
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Hiking

I lost my Queen Mary Dark Harbor Hat on the trail yesterday (Jan 14 2021) and it’s sentimental, if anyone finds it and returns it I can compensate! @noxthefox on IG Trail is pretty rocky and steep and not well marked in some areas. Make sure to leave earlier in the day. It got dark and hard to navigate the trail.

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SexyLexie .
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Hiking

The hike was fun the the bridge is not spectacular. Also be careful my car was almost broken into. My door was jammed so keep your valuables at home

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Kyle Hodgdon
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HikingRocky

Easy to understand why this trail is so popular, as it's probably the prettiest hike in the close-to-LA area. I forgot to buy a pass on my way out & only remembered just about when I got to the parking lot. But I was not going to drive back to get one, so just risked it. I looked at other cars & I'd say about half of the people had one. Happily, I did not get ticketed. About an hour into the hike is when the obvious trail stops being so obvious & it is easy to find yourself off it. There are footprints all over the banks of the river from when other hikers got confused; so just because you are following those does not mean it's the true trail. I stayed very close to the water the whole way to the bridge, which ended up not being the actual trail, which made my trip a little more difficult & rocky. The real trail was a little further back from the river itself. About five minutes after I started walking back I happened upon around a dozen mountain goats up on the rocks.

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Hector Hernandez
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HikingFeeGreat!No shade

$5 permit required Fun hike but long! Water level is about shin high, crossed like 4 times There are red markings to help guide the path

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Charley Taylor
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Hiking

Great hike. Definitely not for beginners. Wear appropriate shoes for both water and unsteady terrain at times.

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Monica Hedrick
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HikingGreat!

Nice hiking along the stream, lots of shade. Path was mostly clear, some hard spots but worth it.

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Sage Maier
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HikingFeeGreat!Private propertyScramble

Definitely get ready to get wet! You'll have to cross the stream several times. the hike was beautiful and not too difficult. a few places are tough because of unstable ground, and most people wore masks but everybody respected each other's space. Could be better marked too.

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Dylan Powell
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I loved the trail. Be careful with the crossings and get ready to get wet!

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Ivanna Llibre Dominguez
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HikingGreat!RockyScramble

My favorite trail of all times so far.

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mario ayala
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Hiking
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