Mount Thom and Tongva Peak Loop

HARD 234 reviews
#2 of 4 trails in

Mount Thom and Tongva Peak Loop is a 6.7 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Burbank, California that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
6.7 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
2306 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Loop

dogs on leash

birding

hiking

nature trips

trail running

walking

forest

views

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

Perhaps one of the toughest hikes in the San Fernando Valley, this trail can be used as a training course for harder hikes (such as Mt. Whitney or Cactus-to-Clouds). The sharp elevation gain is recommended only for experienced hikers. For those who endure the challenge, you will be rewarded with some of the best views in the valley. Be sure to bring plenty of water...and even more willpower.

hiking
28 days ago

Definitely my favorite hike in SFV. I’ve been doing it three days a week and have explored most of the variations.

Despite what the map here shows, I would suggest an alternate way down. If you follow the loop shown on the map, everything after Tongva peak is pretty boring. It has some nice views but it’s about 4.5 miles of slow downhill on the wide fire road. It takes a while and doesn’t present any challenge or burn many calories. You’re just walking for a long time.

My favorite alternative is to cut the loop short and head down at Tongva peak. As you get to the radio tower, you will see a small path that doubles back along the fence line and leads you to the south side of the fence. Here you will find a stone bench and just to the left of it there is a small trail.

Take the small trail / path next to the bench for a much more direct way down. It’s quite steep and quite technical at parts but it’s much faster and is a much better workout! Taking this trail will cut about 3 miles off the whole loop (while still being a better workout) and will drop you out behind the dam, right next to where the main loop does.

hiking
1 month ago

Great hike.... worth the view - no pain, no gain.

hiking
1 month ago

Great hike. Many others trails connect once you’re at the top ( the tougher part). Stick to the App if u want to get back to your car:) it’s an adventure!

hiking
1 month ago

Very steep at the beginning. Very nice urban hike with views.

2 months ago

Nice trail recently widened and with loose gravel in steep areas creating more difficult patches.

hiking
2 months ago

For sure the toughest hike I’ve ever been to so far. Been hiking for a while but mostly stay with the “moderate” difficulty ones, so I decided to give myself a challenge by taking a “hard” one. It would actually be an easy hike if it weren’t for the first hour or so. The first 1.5 Miles are all crazy uphill with one steep slope after another, some of them are so steep I’ll have to lean over and semi-crawl for a minute. But after the first hour it’s all pretty flat & easy. Went over towards late March so the temperature is cool (65-ish), can’t imagine anyone would want to challenge this on a hot summer day.

Be sure to track your hike with this app or GPS. There are several tricky fork that might lead you the the wrong direction, especially the one towards the end of the loop - take left towards seven trees (i think it’s this name) and walk up the small narrow road. If you don’t wanna stick to this map take the big road on the right side, which would lead you back to the parking lot too.

Also the trail head is kinda hidden. I wasn’t sure until I tried & walked up towards the drainage-like entrance with no sign at all.

trail running
3 months ago

Excellent climb / trail run. I recommend starting on the steep incline because you will be rewarded with a 3.5 mile moderately technical downhill for the second half. I did not see signs for this trail but head up the concrete towards Seven Trees trail. This trailhead is just off to your right but you have to be looking for it. After you reach the summit you'll be up by some power line/poles....this continues for a bit but no more crazy climbing. When you reach the bench that is your turning point. Go right at the bench. If you stay on what looks like Verdugo Motorway (I think that's what they called it) thinking that the trail continues...well, you'll just tack on extra mileage like I did. So if you want to hit the 7.5....don't continue, but there's definitely a trail that continues.

hiking
4 months ago

The best hike I’ve been too! Definitely one of the toughest. Beautiful views! Very incline hike in the beginning. Once you reach the peak, it’s all worth it. Great workout! I totally recommend it to any hike lovers. I took my dog and she also loved it.

4 months ago

Really steep at the beginning or end depends which way you go

4 months ago

It was a really great hike, but it is very steep so be prepared to huff and puff all the way to the top!

trail running
5 months ago

5 months ago

The hike was a good workout. We were scaling the hillside on all fours at one point. there is a 1,600 foot elevation gain the first mile. The rest is pretty much chaparral. Start early, bring water, a big hat and sunscreen. This is non shaded.

hiking
6 months ago

It’s hard , but worth it.

6 months ago

Took the back road behind the library. It's a steady incline to the top. At the top there are 2 benches and a huge circular structure. There's also a small radio tower with a cool view and photo op

7 months ago

Very steep incline the whole way to the top. Takes you to a radio tower with a graffiti boulder at the edge. Most difficult hike I've been on so far

7 months ago

Hard hike, but so worth it!

hiking
7 months ago

It was a great hike. Perfect for a cloudy day!!!!

8 months ago

Good Trail

hiking
9 months ago

Did this bad ass hike, and it was a challenge, oh ya. Be in good shape do this awesome steep incline to the top and then flat across one pole to the other, and then crazy steep decline to the end. I went on a very hot day, and started at around 9:15 am, and I was in the middle of this hike when things got a bit crazy. It was really hot and I felt that heat. Made it back down in 1 piece, but the sun really did a number on me. I ignored the heat wave and punished my body by going through the hike and not returning back. If you want to do this hike, be in decent shape and be ready for a challenge. I don't recommend going in the middle of the day. Either early in the morning or late afternoon. Give yourself some good time to complete this challenging hike.

9 months ago

Tough trail with no shade, but also very few people and stunning views at the top. If you want a really good workout and some privacy it's one of the best trails in the LA area.

11 months ago

very hard I try to run it all the way to the top. I had to stop several times, once you get there I just kept going down. just about 7 miles done today 7/8/17.

11 months ago

Very challenging inclined hike but so worth the beautiful path and scenery.

hiking
11 months ago

The trails that start at Brand park vary. There are multiple trails that start from the parking lot next to the Library. I've hiked this mountain many, many times and I've taken various paths to various end points, always making the goal to reach the peaks or the poles. This review will be the one which starts at the following place. Park your vehicle next to the library. Take the paved road to your left, and not the paved road that leads to the Doctor's House. Ok, start walking on the paved road and pass the road block pole and after a few steps the incline hike starts on your right. It's a nice cardio, that will take you to the seven trees point, with bleachers. Once you're here, continue onward and upward to a zig zag looking path that will lead you to the fire road, right below the pole. This hike from the seven trees to the pole is touch, no doubt about it, but it's an awesome cardio session. Once you get yourself to the paved road, you can take 3 paths to reach the pole at the top. Don't stop here, just make it happen. Either continue on your left side and head up, and then make a right turn and head to the closed fence area, or walk straight up and make an initial climb over some rocks and then hike on straight and you'll make it to the fence, or make a right, and head downwards for a little bit on the fire road and as you make a circular left turn, you will see a trail on your left, as your making your circle turn downwards. Once you locate this trail, start hiking and you'll make it to the top in a little bit. Once you're at the top, it's the greatest feeling of accomplishment on this mountain, hands down. Well, once this is accomplished head back down, but going down that steep downward hike is dangerous. Take your time and don't rush, you will fall or slip. You want cardio, this is it. There are other trails in this area as well, and I'll review them as well. Have fun and be safe.

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Great trail

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Love it.

hiking
Saturday, May 06, 2017

Went last night around 5:30 and did the loop. The first 1.5 miles is like being on a stair master for an hour. My legs were burning the entire time. Once you get up to the radio towers, it evens out a bit and the scenery is great. The downhill is a nice reprieve but then your legs start burning again from constant downhill. The views at sunset are spectacular so it was well worth the hard work. Not a lot of other hikers on the trail, but numerous lizards and wildlife after the sun goes down (saw an excited skunk and a coyote). If you park near the playground, there are bathrooms. Bring lots of water and avoid in the middle of the day because it's hot and hardly any shade. We did the counterclockwise route so we hiked UP the steepest part. Hiking clockwise and DOWN the steepest part looks like it could be quite treacherous without the right shoes and potentially hiking poles.

Saturday, April 29, 2017

At the trailhead I veered left which is an extremely steep way up connecting to the fire road. At the halfway point I took skyline going down which is a bit tricky as the trail is extremely narrow with drops on both sides and overgrown vegetation. Very steep as well, and kind of tricky if you don't stay on the main trail coming down. Very short trail but excellent cardio considering the grade at the onset and coming down.

hiking
Wednesday, April 19, 2017

The way up was beautiful, taking partly the motor road and then following the 7 trees path to the top. Unfortunately I took the super steep trail back down which was pretty challenging and I'll probably will just take the trail I took up back down next time.

hiking
Friday, March 24, 2017

Beautiful and strenuous hike

hiking
Sunday, February 26, 2017

This is delightful for folks who like to combine hiking and running. The first 40 min or so are the steepest, then it evens out a bit and you can combine hiking and light running up to the highest point, at which you'll hit an intersection with "brand motorway" and that'll take you back down to the bottom, with a perfect amount of downhill grade for effortless running (flatter than the way up).

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