San Bernardino Peak Trail via Angelus Oaks

HARD 237 reviews

San Bernardino Peak Trail via Angelus Oaks is a 15.7 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Angelus Oaks, California that features a river and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from June until November. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
15.7 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
4625 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

backpacking

camping

hiking

mountain biking

trail running

forest

river

views

wildlife

bugs

rocky

snow

One of the best-kept secrets of Southern California is San Bernardino Mountain. Just five miles away from the highest peak in SoCal - San Gorgonio - San Bernardino tops out at a respectable 10,649 feet. Hiking from Angelus Oaks, this 15-mile out-and-back trail climbs over 4,700 vertical feet. It makes for a very long day hike or a great weekend backpacking trip. This trail has amazing views that begin very early in the hike. San Bernardino Peak is one of the lesser known (and lesser traveled) peaks in SoCal, providing a nice break from the more crowded trails like Mt. San Antonio. There are three distinct sections to this trail. The first section climbs steadily up well-engineered switchbacks through oak and pine forest. You gain a lot of elevation quickly, but the trail is smooth and not too steep. The second section gently climbs through manzanita, with beautiful views to the north towards Big Bear. The trail beings to climb up the final slope as you near Limber Pines. There is a small seasonal creek that you'll cross about 1/2 mile before Limber Pines. Limber Pines is where the weekend backpackers often setup camp, and it makes a great place for a break before your final climb. The third and final section follows switchbacks up the steep slope to Washington's Monument, then parallels the ridge to the top of San Bernardino Peak.

hiking
13 days ago

The trail is very easy to follow and well maintained.

backpacking
13 days ago

So me and my wife did this trail thanksgiving weekend. The weather was great! Surprisingly warm for the elevation. This was my wives first time backpacking. So it was pretty intense for her since she hasn’t done it before. I would definitely say if this is your first or one of the first times backpacking I would say to start as early as you can to give you plenty of time to take breaks along the way. However there aren’t too many steep parts of the trail it’s pretty steady most of the way. Great views the whole way up! WHEN WE WENT UP THERE WAS WATER AT LIMBER PINES CAMPSITE HOWEVER THERE WERE SOME PARTS LOWER THAN THE CROSSING THAT HAD STARTED TO FREEZE HOWEVER IT WAS FLOWING PRETTY WELL. I WOULD DEFINITELY RECOMMEND THIS TRAIL AND DO IT AGAIN. HAVE FUN. AND MAKE SURE TO TRY TO GET TO THE PARKING LOT EARLY TO GET A SPOT.

hiking
26 days ago

Great hike and weather couldn't have been better. the first 2 1/2 miles are hard but the rest is a steady uphill except for the manzanilla section. Levels off for a good breather around 3 1/2 mile mark but then it's up again. Good workout. Hard to say if it's easy, moderate, hard, etc because everyone is their own person and have different skill levels. I hike quite a bit and it's difficult at times. I average about 20-21 minutes a mile going up if that's a good yardstick. Saw a couple campers at Limber Pines area. Loved the hike and met some really good people from HikescapeLA at the summit. Hikers are good people! Don't forget to get your permit for San Bernardino Peak and all the other local hikes at the Mill Creek Ranger Station which is about 14 miles before the trailhead. They open at 8am but the forms are outside if you get there before that.

hiking
1 month ago

This is an excellent day hike. There is nothing technical and the trail is extremely easy to follow. The first 2 1/2 miles are the most physically challenging part, with a 15% + grade. But by the time my body really started to feel the elevation, the grade relaxed and I locked my pace in all the way to the summit. Of course there are a few steep areas here and there, but they are spaced far apart and don't beat up your quads too bad at all.

Once you break out of the forested section, the view is nearly continuous all the way to the summit. The view at the summit is lackluster in comparison to the rest of the hike, so really enjoy that view during the climb and at "the bench".

I would compare this hike to Cucamonga via Icehouse Canyon. It is not as physically challenging imho, but the elevation challenge is of course much more significant. I absolutely loved this hike and I would probably do this very frequently if I lived close by.

A permit is NOT required for a day hike. Visit http://sgwa.org/wilderness-permits/ for more info.

Also, if you have a low ground clearance/performance oriented car, you may want to consider taking a different car or finding a different place to park besides the trail head. The drive from the fire station to the trail head is "offroad", with shallow ruts/loose and sharp rocks.

1 month ago

Great hike. Awesome views with lots of differing landscapes. I would highly recommend this hike to anyone showing an interest.

hiking
1 month ago

I had an off day on this hike, and it totally kicked my butt. The views are beautiful, and the trail is very easy to follow, probably among the easiest I’ve been on.

hiking
2 months ago

Beautiful scenery, fantastic views. Strenuous hike, but nothing technically challenging. No water at the crossing of Limber Pine Creek. There is a trickle higher up. I am sure there would be plenty of flow in the spring time. Wilderness permit required. It is available at the Mill Creek Ranger Station. Adventure pass required for parking.

How can somebody leave a 1 star rating and not give a comment?

hiking
2 months ago

Beautiful views

Challenging with a variety of terrain.

3 months ago

Beautiful trail!!

hiking
3 months ago

Great hard hike! Up, up, up! Make sure you stop at the bench because the views are spectacular. Clear trail and well maintained all the way and this hike rewards every tough step with tremendous beauty!

3 months ago

Best hike in So Cal
Did this on a Thursday and only 3 hikers on the trail all day.

backpacking
3 months ago

Back yesterday from an overnight at Limber Pines.. Amazing camp, maybe the best in SOCAL.... Nice hike to peak in morning left camp set up packed up on way down. Then a full descent , creek flowing nicely about .2 miles beyond camp, it's uphill and rocky for water so be prepared if making a run at sunset... great overnight and could go on to Vivian Creek trail and summit San Gorgornio for a longer trip...

hiking
3 months ago

love this trail. from the bottom of trail until the peak have signal and data. But extremely difficult. never ending up and up and up

hiking
3 months ago

This is the most strenuous hike I've ever done. It took me about 6 hrs to reach the peak and about 3 to go down again. The trail is well marked and easy to follow but it is about 90% uphill. I began to doubt if I would reach the top but when I finally did my legs were so tired! But I felt so accomplished to reach the peak. The views were amazing!

backpacking
3 months ago

Cool.

hiking
4 months ago

GORGEOUS hike-switchbacks in the beginning for an hour? But not bad at all. Once you come out switchbacks the terrain opens up to a majestic Manzanita blanket with giant boulders scattered throughout the valley. I was speechless, it was a view out of Narnia books/movie...A MUST SEE!!! the climb to the top is less green but the view continues to amaze. There is a flowing creek halfway up, we filled up no filter and I'm still alive didn't get sick. When you pass monument, you're going to come up to a Y , head rt, theres little rocks accross it making it appear as if wrong oath, not so. The PEAK is beautiful with spectacular views. If you keep your eyes open and stop to look around you may see wildlife, i saw a deer bedded down under a tree shade.

4 months ago

Divide into 3 parts: forest traverses ~ 3 mile steady climb, gorse traverses ~3 mile flatter portion, then high traverses ~ 2 miles including a few false summits. Was cool in early am but heated up quickly on way back down. I didn't see water described one week ago but may have just missed it. Brought 2L and electrolyte flask that was sufficient. Great trail with varied terrain, highly recommend. My Garmin listed 16.0 miles to lot and back with 4521 elevation gain.

hiking
4 months ago

This trail is a special treat less than a week after going up San Gorgonio, it was relatively easier to do. Starting in the early dark, I got to the summit around noon, taking pics and video along the way. There was a spring with very refreshing water in the last third of the hike. There were also spectacular views of the surrounding area of SoCal as well as a great view of Forest Falls and the Vivian Creek route up San Gorgonio, giving me flashbacks of the week before. Mid way in the hike the trail flattens out some for a rest in the pace, and it looks like the campground is really nice. Recommended.

hiking
4 months ago

Dirt road to get to trail head is a bit tough with a tiny sedan but just go slow! Found a creek about 3/4 of the way up on the hike. We stopped and filtered some ice cold water, delicious! Beautiful trail, took us about 10hrs to complete.

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