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Telegraph Peak via Manker Flat and Baldy Notch

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Angeles National Forest

Telegraph Peak via Manker Flat and Baldy Notch is a 11.4 mile out and back trail located near Mt Baldy, California that offers scenic views and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking and horses and is best used from March until November. Dogs and horses are also able to use this trail.

Distance: 11.4 miles Elevation Gain: 3,431 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dog friendly


horseback riding


Splendid high country, wilderness, and breathtaking peak with a 360-degree view Telegraph Peak (8985') stands as the crowning glory of the celebrated Three T's, with Thunder Mountain (8587') to its north, and Timber Mountain (8303') to its south. This trio of peaks treats you to some of the most superb high country in the San Gabriels. For this hike, you'll be attaining just two of the Three T's, Thunder and Telegraph. Walk the dirt road from Manker Flat 3.6 miles to Baldy Notch. Pick up the trail straight ahead on east edge of the notch and follow the road south 1.5 miles to the marked Three T's trailhead (on the west ridge .10 mile below the summit of Thunder Mt.). Descend southeast into the Cucamonga Wilderness using the single-track trail to the saddle then follow the trail as it steeply climbs the northwest face of Telegraph to the ridge, 1.2 miles. Turn left (east) at the signed trail and climb the ridge .25 mile to Telegraph. You can cut 3.6 or 7.2 miles from your hike by riding the ski lift up and/or down, weekends and holidays.

3 months ago

I could not finish the last section from the saddle due to icy conditions and only having micro spikes. I would suggest crampons for that last section until the snow melts some more. Other than was a perfect home and I put in 11 miles on the trail (too the fore road up and back).

6 months ago

I hiked it this morning. I enjoyed it very much. The section to Thunder Mtn was moderate. The section on 3 Ts was hard but not like Devil's Backbone to Mt Baldy or Ice House Canyon to Cucamonga Peak. After Baldy Notch, there were no other hikers going until someone passed me near the peak. When I got to the top I only had to share the peak with her. Cool.

8 months ago

Until Thunder the trail is fire road, but the final stretch up to Telegraph is gorgeous and quiet. The peak itself is a tiny but with an immense view. A patch of Mountain Mahogany shrubs makes this peak quite different then most other peaks in the area.

Beautiful trail! Easy to follow. Telegraph Peak is beautiful!!! I recorded 16.5 miles though.

8 months ago

The bottom to the ski resort is pretty ho hum.After Thunder Peak, it's fantastic. The Three T's trail was hard to find. The sign is set behind two downed trees. The sign to Telegraph Peak is scratched on the sign at the junction. But the views are 360 awesome.

9 months ago

Great hike today, it was nice and cool in the morning, perfect hiking conditions and made it to the saddle in good time. Decided to add on the 3 T’s and stop at the Baldy Notch lodge for a drink then walked down the fire road. As I parked at Icehouse Canyon I had to walk from the bottom of Manker Flats to my car along the road—super dangerous because of blind hairpin turns which required crossing to the more visible side of the road. I’ll never wLk this road again, just too dangerous for pedestrian hikers!

10 months ago

beautiful trail.

Sun May 05 2019

Did this Saturday May 4th. Great hike. Still some snow you have to go over. But if you have poles and are careful, slow and steady and step in people's existing holes you can make it. Distance was actually 13 miles plus a little extra, depending upon how far you park from the entrance at Mankers Flat.

Mon Apr 15 2019

great trail with scenic views of the high desert careful of high winds....switchbacks are awesome though...soooo peaceful!!!! your legs will feel it though...not for wussies!!!

Tue Jan 01 2019

Easy hike to thunder but dangerous hike to telegraph during winter.

Thu Sep 20 2018

Great hike. A bit steep the last 1/4 mile to the peak but well worth the effort.

Mon Jul 23 2018

Operation on Target - 2018. We used this Peak to signal other mountain tops using mirrors. I have never sweated so much. We didn’t ride the ski lift. It was operating on our way back. Views were great. We saw the tops of Cucamonga, Bighorn , and Ontario Peak. Started at 5:45am and reached the top at 9:05am. Great hike!

Mon Jul 16 2018

Great final peak to this at Thunder Mountain. Very remote with incredible views

Wed Apr 25 2018

Great hike with beautiful views. We made sure to go to both peaks since the trail doesn't go all the way to Thunder Mountain peak. There is an elevation sign there right near the top of the slope and it's a great place for pictures. I was having a rough day so it was a little harder for me then usual, but for my sis it was a breeze. We clocked it at a little over 13 miles.

Fri Feb 16 2018

Awesome climb! Quite beautiful and well worth the day.

Mon Jun 05 2017

This trail has some of the best views of the San Gabriels that I've ever seen (I've been on 40+ trails in the range). We took the ski lift to the notch from Manker Flat and the road down. It saved us about 3 miles. The road isn't very interesting, so next time I might take the lift up and down, but add Timber to the journey and complete the Three T's (Thunder, Telegraph, and Timber). Watch out for rattlesnakes in the sections that are single track. We saw two the day we went. The first was hiding in a Manzanita bush at the beginning of the ascent to Telegraph. The second was on a log near the final .25 mile to the summit. I spotted the snake on the log from a distance, but I almost stepped on the one in the Manzanita bush. Be cautious when you walk next to Manzanita bushes; they're nearly impossible to see through.

Wed Apr 12 2017

Made it all the way to Thunder Mountain peak. Still some snow on the trail. My two sons and I were able to make it with boots and trekking poles.

Sat Dec 31 2016

What an awesome hike today. Proud to have joined Lesley and other SoCal Hikers for a Memorial Hike in honor of Craig Cambras. Beautiful day for this hike.

Mon Jul 18 2016

I did the telegram pic. Via ice house , I did all of the three pic. I went all to Mt Baldy Natch, and then ask for right to come back to the icehouse, it was really nice the weather was perfect.

Mon Nov 07 2011

Hiked this as part of the Three T's. Great trail and it was a ghost town when I was there. There was freezing cold wind and clear as a bell. Great day!

6 months ago

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