SoCalMtB

  • Mt. Lowe Railway - #Mt.LoweRailway

    Socal - Los Angeles County - Altadena NickNames: #Mt.LoweRailway

    1. Take the Lake Ave. off ramp off the 210 Frwy. in Pasadena. Drive north to the end. Go left for a few miles to a yellow light that marks Chaney Trail. Turn right and drive up to a junction. You can park there if there is room or turn right and park at Millard Campground.
    2. Going West on the 210 Fwy, Exit Lincoln (R). Go North on Lincoln, turn (R) on W. Loma Alta Dr., then (L) on Cheney Trail, the gate and trailhead will be on your right after a short climb.
    Thomas Guide page 535 H2



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    • Trail UpdateStill Steep-I rode this for the first time in twenty years today. That paved part(From Chaney Trail) is still steep, but just like in the old days, once you hit the dirt, it gets mellow. Quite a few hikers out on the road.
      climber1 a 58 year old Weekend Warrior riding a Specialized Carve(Pro) from Alhambra, California

      Posted:07/28/2012

    • Trail UpdatePhoto Is Finally Uploaded-I finally got this photo uploaded so here is the route to it. Sorry for the run around. Click Photos above this post. Click So Cal Trail Photos. In the Trail Photo Albums click Mount Lowe Railway. It is the 11th one, a great practical joke that someone did'nt appreciate and has since removed.
      Michael L a 62 year old Cross-Country Rider riding a Yeti ASR from Pasadena, Ca.

      Posted:11/07/2011

    • Trail UpdateHere's The Photo-http://www.socalmtb.com/socal/trails/photos/16d11x193608.mt_lowe_0241

      I hope that this works, I have tried a few times to download into the photo gallery and it shows that it was entered yet is not visible when re entering the space, Staff has not returned my inquery. It's too good to not share with you all. If this attempt fails i'm open to brief tutoring.
      Michael L a 62 year old Cross-Country Rider riding a Yeti ASR from Pasadena, Ca.

      Posted:11/02/2011

    • Trail UpdateRE; The Uptight Poster In #63-Pay no attention to Sperm Breath, AKA Randy Boy. He has zero credibilty around the CA mountain bike scene and has more than worn out his welcome. Do yourself a favor and steer clear of this loser. Consider yourself forwarned.
      Punchin the Fuzz a 79 year old Weekend Warrior riding a Schwinn Apple Krate from Cloudburst Summit, CA

      Posted:10/26/2011

    • Trail UpdateWhere's The Photo?-Okay, I'll bite. Where's this photo you are referring too? Can't see it in the Trailhead Photos section.
      bubbadoc

      Posted:10/02/2011

    • Trail UpdateOkay, I'll bite. Where's this photo you are referring too? Can't see it in the Trailhead Photos section.
      bubbadoc

      Posted:10/02/2011

    • Trail UpdateParty Pooper - Inspiration Point-Back in May 2011 I took the attached picture (see the Trailhead Photo Album for this trail) of one very clever prankster's joke at Inspiration Point.Nothing was removed from the historical site as that particular site tube assembly was completely missing including the support post. Today I saw that some offended party pooper has removed the rear view periscope part of the assembly effectively killing the joke. I'm sure it was not a biker but rather a Sierra Club type, up tight hiker.I hope the originator puts the tubing back with Loc Tight and JB Weld.Namby pambies can't take a joke!

      Michael L a 62 year old Cross-Country Rider riding a Yeti ASR from Pasadena, Ca.

      Posted:10/01/2011

    • Trail UpdateMt. Lowe And Sunset Open Now-Finally the forest service opened the whole Mt. Lowe area including Upper Sam Merril and Sunset Ridge. The fire road is open all the way to the Wilson tunnel and in great shape up to that point, The tunnel road is badly washed out at both ends and is closed for good reason. I know some have but I wouldn't risk it. Sunset Ridge trail has been expertly repaired.Good times are back.
      Michael L a 61 year old Cross-Country Rider riding a Yeti ASR from Pasadena, Ca.

      Posted:05/23/2011

    • Trail UpdateSunset Ridge And El Prieto-Sunset Ridge and El Prieto are closed. Do not get caught on either one. Saty out of the closed areas and let the forest revitalize itself. There are plenty of other places to ride other than illegal trails.
      Randy Boy a 53 year old Cross-Country Rider riding a Niner from Granada Hills, CA .com

      Posted:11/22/2010

    • Trail UpdateStill Closed?-Does anyone know if it's still closed? San Merril to Sunset to El-P closed? I'm coming down for work in a few weeks looking for some epic runs during my stay. Anything else arond the greater Los Angeles?
      a 48 year old Racer riding a Yeti from San Luis Obispo

      Posted:11/03/2010

    • Trail UpdateChaney Is Open-I called the forest service and a gentleman named Howard told me Chaney is open but Echo Mountain Road was closed after Cape of Good Hope (although I didn't see a sign, and a mountain biker was descending it when I was at the cutoff), so I rode to it and then over to Echo Mountain. Sunset Trail is still closed.
      UrbanKnight a 30 year old Die-hard Enthusiast riding a K2 Razorback from Pasadena, CA, USA

      Posted:06/30/2010

    • Trail UpdateDid Mt.Lowe Railway from Echo Mnt. Since Chaney is closed, they sopposedly have a security guard at the gate, i dunno. But from where i took it up to Mt.lowe/Sam Merrill its fine riding all the way! A couple burnt rocks/boulders from the station fire are laying around, but that just makes it interesting. Awesome views on the canyons and burnt trees. Haven't takin it downhill...yet.

      Posted:11/05/2009

    • Trail UpdateWanted By Police & Forest Srvc-6-28-09 At the Mt.Lowe Fire Road trail head there is a sign w/ a picture of a Mountain Biker saying "Any information regarding 2 mountain bikers and a large white pitbull please call the police department, forest service & forest service volunteer" at this #. Does anyone know what this is all about?

      I was reading the concerns of trail users below regarding excessive speed on the trail. Has the idea of a volunteer mountain bike patrol been floated around? And while I'm on a suggestion role here, does anyone want porta potties at the trail head? (For people like me who drive 60 miles to ride at Brown or Mt.Lowe) :)
      charlesinoc a 41 year old Cross-Country Rider riding a Nuclear powered self propulsion. from Laguna Niguel

      Posted:06/28/2009

    • Trail UpdateGreat Conditions-I forgot how great of a view there was from up top. Don't know what the last person was raving about. The trail has its points but it's really not that technical. Enjoy the upper San Gabriels now before the summer heat begins to cook.
      a 46 year old Downhiller riding a Santa Cruz Blur from OC

      Posted:06/25/2009

    • Trail UpdateAll you pussies who don't like technical trails should find a new trail to ride.

      IF YOU CAN'T HANDLE IT, DON'T RIDE IT!

      Stop whining, and ride somewhere else...
      a 37 year old Weekend Warrior

      Posted:06/12/2009

    • Trail UpdateThe trail is getting torn up, and half the bikers ride way too fast. Some hiker is gonna get hurt bad one of these days of the bikes don't slow down, and we know who loses access after that! I bike and hike all over the San Gabriels, and would like to co-exist!
      bikeandhike a 43 year old

      Posted:06/08/2009

    • Trail UpdateI think the guy with the other intense has it backwards. Just ride.
      a 45 year old Racer riding a Intense Spider XVP from Gabriel's

      Posted:04/29/2008

    • Trail UpdateErikqjames-The XC rider are your enemy. Not the big bike crowd.
      a 27 year old Downhiller riding a Intense Uzzi from Durango, CO

      Posted:04/29/2008

    • Trail UpdateSunset Trail Repair-3-11-08 Hats off to whomever repaired Sunset this weekend. You undid so much of the damage rain and DownHillers did.

      Let's see how long it takes for the DH'ers to f**k it up again :-)

      THANKS STUD(s)!!
      erikqjames a 36 year old Die-hard Enthusiast

      Posted:03/12/2008

    • Trail UpdateSunset Trail-Volunteers are the ones who maintain the trails in the forest. The trail has a new group working it. Check out lowest section. We know about the damage being done. Any help in getting these destroyers to stop tearing the trails up would be a great help. I work these trails every Saturday. We are trying to get Freeriders to get with Forest Service to set up and design a trail just for them. Not many stepping up yet. Want to volunteer? mrgy33@hotmail.com
      Goat a 51 year old Cross-Country Rider riding a Trek Fuel EX 9.5 from Pasadena

      Posted:05/14/2007

    • Trail UpdateThis Trail Is A Dust Bowl Now...-Started @ Millard, up lower Sunset ST to pavement. Up pavement and down Sunset and back to Millard.

      I use to really love this trail and rode it about once a week, at least. I haven't been on Sunset in about a year and man, has it changed. The only thing it's missing is the ice and you can have a full on luge course, burms and all. The break ruts are so deep it's ridiculous. You can’t help but to ride in it. Gone are the days where you have to navigate and try to find clean lines. This trail has been taken over and completely abused. The side shoots and short cuts are almost as wide as the trail itself. I think the foresty dept. has grown tired of attempting to block them or repair them and it's obvious an attempt hasn't been made in a quite some time.

      Sunset used to be such a fun and technical trail. What more can you say and what hasn't been already said?

      What an effin shame!!!

      JoeTruth a 43 year old Cross-Country Rider from Sierra Mamma

      Posted:05/12/2007

    • Trail UpdateLook-Out To Trolly-Great Ride Technical & sketchy which made it all the more enjoyable!...did it on a Tuesday & not one other rider besides us!..I can't believe I did this ride over 15 years ago with no suspension & disk brakes little own V-Brakes!....How did we do it "In The Day"!?? We were real men then hah-hah!
      Matt W a 47 whew! year old riding a Ellsworth Moment from Chapin , SC

      Posted:03/10/2007

    • Trail UpdateNice Climb, Poor Singletrack-I have hiked the lower portion of Sunset Ridge to the fork that leads to the Dawn Mine. I was expecting a nice fast single track form the paved road 2 miles from the gate. What I got was lose rock and terribly rutted switchbacks. The upper portion of Sunset ridge has been completely used up by other riders dragging their tires through all of the technical sections. All of the sections with steps intalled are unrideable because of careless riding down around the sides of them. It's too bad because this looks like it was a great trail once. I guess it's just overused. If you are an advanced rider this trail is doable but I think you will be disappointed by the conditions. Make sure you pick up an Adventure Pass as they are required for parking at the trail head. I have seen most of the cars parked up there with out them. Shame on those folks. It only cost $3 or $27 for an entire year and the money goes to maintenance on the trials we use. Ride responsibly and do your part to make our trails better.
      Mrkcy a 29 year old Cross-Country Rider riding a Giant Iguana from Temple City

      Posted:08/16/2006

    • Trail UpdateEasy Climbin'-First time riding this trail. Took the paved road to the Cape of Good Hope and then came back down Sunset. Climb was smooth and easy (a paved climb usually is). Sunset had some great single track, but also had lot's of loose gravel which made for some treacherous downhill riding. Overall, a great ride. I'll definitely be back!
      gojmoney a 34 year old Weekend Warrior riding a Diamond Back Vlink from pasadena

      Posted:02/28/2006

    • Trail UpdateWet Weather Ripping..-Team T.K. rocking on the Lowzie with no one to be seen. Condition was smooth and tacky, little slippage on the boulders. rained the whole time not to cold. some fog but Phukin fun!
      a 100 year old Die-hard Enthusiast riding a many from The pride of the Foothills

      Posted:01/14/2006

    • Trail Update"if I continue up the fire road to the summit of Mt.Lowe, what is the best way to descend from there? "

      You could either take Upper Sam Merrill back down to Mid Merrill and the route you just took back, or continue climbing to Mt. Wilson Rd. and hang a left to Red Box where you'd take Gabrieleno down to JPL. I'm not sure what the latest conditions on Gab are right now.
      Endo Verendo

      Posted:10/19/2005

    • Trail UpdateSUMMIT Descent?-
      Road Mt.Lowe from JPL to Inspiration Point. Down Sam Merrill and Sunset and El Prieto. Hard to beat that combination of trails.

      Question though, if I continue up the fire road to the summit of Mt.Lowe, what is the best way to descend from there?
      a 30 year old Weekend Warrior

      Posted:10/19/2005

    • Trail UpdateT.K RICH RIPP$ MT. LOWE....-ROdelowe this mornin. Conditions could not have ben better.Temp in the mid 70s.fire Rd good,some rocks hear and there but manageable until I reached to the lower section wear the trail was washed out for about for about 8ft.Hiked my bike across and continued my ride down I met up with a forest ranger.we discussed the conditions I offered my help on repairing it but he asured me his guys wear takeing care of it.Rode down to EL PRIETO wear the fun began.Swithbacks good with no riders to be seen.Lotsa oak... so if your one of those guys who has a problem with it this is not a place for u.

      El TroQuero a 29 year old Die-hard Enthusiast riding a TREK BRUISA from Friendly foothills of Glendora ca.

      Posted:09/04/2005

    • Trail UpdateMt. Lowe/mt. Wilson/sturdivant-went up mt. lowe railway to peak of mt. wilson (approx. 12 miles). dropped sturdivant trail. was in great shape. was approx. 9 miles of technical singletrack. took this out to chantry and rode down closed road. we had set car shuttle to eliminate 10 mile road ride back to start of mt. lowe. highly recommend this trail. since road to chantry is closed right now there are very few people/hikers in the area. we did not encounter 1 hiker in 9 miles of the sturdivant trail
      Swilson a 39 year old Cross-Country Rider

      Posted:05/16/2005

    • Trail UpdateSunset Ridge-The Chaney Trail Rd. now open! Rode up the asphalt road to the entrance of Sunset Ridge singletrack and it was in great condition. Had a lot of fun.
      eat a 34 year old Weekend Warrior riding a Kona Dawg Primo from Los Feliz, CA

      Posted:03/07/2005

    • Trail UpdateLA Public Works now thinks Chaney Trail Rd. will open today (3-2-05). It should be open this weekend.

      Posted:03/02/2005

    • Trail UpdateSunset-Sunset is still in great shape after the rains.

      Posted:02/28/2005

    • Trail UpdateLA Public Works says Chaney Trail Rd. was damaged during the storms. It is scheduled to reopen 6-30-05.

      In addition, the Lower Sam Merrill Trail at the end of Lake suffered a major landslide around the half-mile mark. Passage is possible but dicey.

      There appears to be no easy access to the Mt Lowe Railway from Altadena at the moment, unless walking up Chaney Trail Rd. is possible. URL: http://www.ladpw.org/mpm/roadclosure/pdf/TG_535.pdf

      Posted:01/28/2005

    • Trail UpdateMiddle Sam Merril/sunset-My friend and I rode from the gate at the top of cheney trail up to inspiration point and then down the sam merril and sunset trails. The trail is in pretty good shape with only a few sections where loose rock and dirt have slid onto the trail. It seems like the longer we go without rain the more the rocks get exposed. The entire trail is completely rideable including the gnarly section with the big drop off on your left. The entire ride takes about two hours if you dont stop to take a break.
      Ride rating: Advanced
      Ride distance: Elevation change: 2400ft.
      kaptan metalbuns a 29 year old Weekend Warrior riding a stumpjumper pro disc from Huntington beach CA.

      Posted:09/06/2004

    • Trail UpdateMt. Lowe-Did this one for the first time today. We went 5.2
      miles from the trailhead to a campground. No
      really bad sandy spots.
      Ride rating: Advanced
      Ride distance: 10.4 miles Elevation change: 2K +
      Dirt Road=60% Paved Path=40%
      Gringo a 51 year old Cross-Country Rider riding a Ellsworth Isis from Chatsworth

      Posted:07/05/2004

    • Trail UpdateSunset Trail Update-Just a quick update: Sunset trail it very sandy, loose, and very overgrown.

      From top to bottom, the trail is considerably loose and sandy. Loose rocks and gravel conditions would be a little more descriptive. Though still very rideable. Just adding to the fun. The overgrown section I'm referring to would be the located around the middle portion of the trail. Ride slowly and cautiously, for visibility is quite restricted.

      We rode lower Merrill, Sunset, and El Prieto. Good times!! so get out there and ride.

      enjoy, tep
      tep

      Posted:05/16/2004

    • Trail UpdateThe Merrills-Lower Merrill has quite a bit of damage from the
      last rainstorm, mostly in the form of numerous
      landslides and rockfalls, but nothing that doesn't
      require more than a short walk over. Middle Merrill
      is in great shape and is lots of fun right now. The
      scarey, exposed right hand turn 2/3 of the way
      down has been sanitized for your protection (I
      guess?) and doesn't exist anymore. Seriously, it's
      like they just zapped it away. Sunset is in it's usual
      good shape despite the rain.
      Endo Verendo a Weekend Warrior riding a 4 Spot from The Valley

      Posted:02/28/2004

    • Trail UpdatePlease Note!!!!!!!!!!!!!-I'm posting the follwing with permission from Martin Gomez, President of The Pasadena Mountain Bike Club. Shape up out there, people. The San Gabriels are one of the most treasured riding areas in Southern California. It would be a crime to lose access there.
      Friends and fellow mountain bikers,
      I have to pass on some urgent and potentially incredibly BAD news from fellow PMBC (Pasadena Mountain Bike Club) member and mountain bike patrol guy, Mark Gage. He said that at the last Forest Service Volunteer meeting (at which he is usually the only mountain biker and is prone to catching the flak for all of us with zero back up from anyone else) the other local trail groups are pushing the District Ranger to close at least the Middle Sam Merrill and potentially ALL OF THE LOCAL SINGLETRACK TRAILS!!! That would mean all the good stuff on the front range of the Angeles National Forest above Pasadena and would leave us only the fire roads and pavement to ride. This is due to certain groups of drop off artists that cut the trail above the Circular Bridge area on the Mount Lowe Road to ride a steeper face onto the Lowe Road and are actually short cutting right through that historic landmark on the mountain! Please remember that I am NOT saying that all of the people who do drop off runs down from Willie (Mt. Wilson) are responsible for this.

      I've been hearing the complaints for years about these people-even from other bikers-and I have even played Devil's Advocate for these guys, saying that they are just new and don't know any better and I asked that we all try to inform these people when we see them of the error of their ways without being to confrontational and starting fights, but that time now has to be over. Obviously, the message is not getting across. We're now in danger of only being allowed on fire roads-which is exactly what some other trail users want for us anyway and according to Mark, one guy who was complaining at this meeting did so while grinning (at him) the whole time! Even the new District Ranger who at first was ready to work with all user groups including mountain bikers has tired of this problem not going away and is ready to shut us out. They've been hassling Mark at these meetings for months now about the yahoos cutting trails because you know I've said that we all get lumped together as a user group regardless of what good trail users most of us are because of a few knuckleheads that don't realize or maybe don't care about the consequences. Forest Service has wanted to know for a while who these groups are and when they do these drop offs so they could get Enforcement up there to cite them but no one has come up with that information and it seems they would rather close the trails to bikes, then send Enforcement so they can write heftier tickets and silence the hyenas who want us out. It's time to rat out these people who will cost us our trails! The Forest Service is interested especially in the pay shuttle service to Wilson. If you ride these trails and do follow the rules of the trail, don't put that full suspension bike away yet. Please continue to ride responsibly as a good example to these other guys and to the non-bikers who think we are all freeriding, tire-skidding, horse and hiker scaring, Hells Angels. If you know these people I'm talking about, let them know that they're screwing it up for all of us and we just can't let that happen.

      Attending these volunteer meetings would be good-so Mark can have some back up-as well as doing trail maintenance with groups like The Mt. Wilson Bicycling Association and CORBA who are now doing trail work in the local mountains. Join bike patrols like Mark's to help spread the word or maybe keep him company since he works on the Merrill mostly by himself. Sweat equity helps-most of the time-when other groups are trying to show how irresponsible and destructive mountain bikers are. These trail short cutters are counterproductive to what we've been working for in the last 15+ years. I've done way too many hours of trail work with the Mt. Wilson group, on the Merrills, the Burton, Sunset Ridge, El Prieto, Gabrielino and other trails in the last ten years to let myself be limited to the fire roads. If that's all I'm going to be allowed to ride, I'm sure not going to make time for trail work in the future and I might as well get used to my road bike.

      Tell your friends, acquaintances, and everyone else on two wheels to fix this problem and to not cut trails or make new pirate stuff like the lame shortcuts on El Prieto that are only for people who have no skills to ride the real trail and had to go around some of the best, most technical, turns on the trail. If you have friends that drive up from other parts of town to ride our epic stuff, give them the skinny too so they don't inadvertently jack things up for us. It might be normal for downhillers to not give way in other parts of Southern California but not in the San Gabriels.

      Thanks for reading my rant and for being responsible trail users,
      Martin Gomez
      President


      spread the word

      Posted:09/23/2003

    • Trail UpdateMt. Lowe, Upper Sam Merril-This was my first time riding this trail and, to say
      the least, it was difficult. To start off, the paved
      section of the Mt. Lowe Road is terribly steep. It
      doesn't help I was baking in the midday sun (I
      started at 12:30). I would not recommend doing
      that. After the horribly grueling paved section, the
      trail greatly eases up and turns to a gradual fire
      road that offers more shade than the lower half.
      The upper part of the Sam Merril Trail is pretty
      technical. As I stated, this was my first time on this
      trail, so I can't really comment on the conditions
      changing. However, some parts of the trail have
      basically 'washed out' and I had to portage 3 or 4
      times. I consider myself to be a lower-end
      advanced rider, and I had some difficulty on this
      trail. There are a lot of rocks and a couple of
      sketchy sections with a great deal of exposure and
      nothing but a slab of craggy rock to cling to. I found
      myself walking my bike through a couple of
      sections. For those of you looking to expand your
      single track skills and take the next big jump in
      technical riding, I would save this trail for later.
      Although I made it without mishap, there was
      definitely the potential for hazard because of lack of
      skill. One time I nearly endoed over my
      handlebars on one of the tighter switchbacks,
      which would have sent me plummeting off a
      thousand foot cliff.
      After hitting the old Mt. Lowe remnants, the sunset
      trail was is good condition, though slightly
      overgrown in parts. I would recommend to anyone
      doing this loop to hit the lower part of the Sunset
      Trail after hitting the Mt. Lowe fire road on the way
      down. It meets back up further down (on the paved
      part), so you don't have to ride the boring paved
      road back to your car. Good Luck!
      Ride rating: Expert
      Ride distance: 14 miles Elevation change: 2500?
      Singletrack=40% Dirt Road=30% Paved Path=30%
      Jgre

      Posted:05/29/2003

    • Trail UpdateTrail Work?-What happened to the rock garden 2/3rd of the way down middle sam? There are just pebbles left.
      The rest of the trail was pretty normal. Seems like some rain damage, some skidding damage, but nothing way out of the ordinary.
      Ride rating: Advanced
      Ride distance: 12.5 miles Elevation change: 2500
      Singletrack=550% Dirt Road=30% Paved Path=20%
      LCS a 35 year old Cross-Country Rider from LA

      Posted:05/13/2003

    • Trail UpdateMt. Lowe & Down Sam And Sunset-Rode trail on Saturday-everything is in great shape. A couple of sketchy tech sections at the start of Sam Merril, but all else is good livin. Switch backs on Sunset are in the best shape I have ever seen. We all smiled and played nice with the hikers. This has to be one of the best trails in the forrest
      Ride rating: Advanced
      Ride distance: 12.5 Elevation change: 2500
      Singletrack=60% Dirt Road=40%
      Anthony a 32 year old Racer from Whittier

      Posted:03/23/2003

    • Trail UpdateUp The Middle Merril, Worth It-Climbed the lower Sam Merril, rested abit at Mt. Echo and continued climbing the technical, sprint and spin nature of the middle Sam to Inspiration Point. Many sections go anerobic, but its all doable, making it a wothwhile effort at least once for those who love to climb.The highlight is spinning up the long traversing section through the white granite along the north slope of the ridge once past the worst of the switch backs. The slower pace gives one a good chance to see the damage to the trail from the skidding, as well as the awesome scenery inn the other direction. It robbed me of all my water (90 deg)) so I opted to descend the Castle Canyon Trail which is not recomended due to heavily eroded tread and hillside. finished with Sunset ridge to Alta Crest to car.
      Ride rating: Expert
      Ride distance: 12 miles Elevation change: 3400
      Singletrack=100%
      Charles Tanguay a 47 year old Cross-Country Rider riding a I-drive

      Posted:11/21/2002

    • Trail UpdateMiddle Sam Merrill Pic-


      Brother Sean riding the rocks on Middle Sam Merrill Trail

      November, 2002



      Tom Kenney a 35 year old Cross-Country Rider riding a Klein Attitude from Reseda, CA

      Posted:11/20/2002

    • Trail UpdateSkidding Around Corners?-Sounds like a lack of skill to me.

      Posted:08/01/2002

    • Trail UpdateMiddle Merrill/Sunset Trail-
      I would have to agree with both riders that posted below. I rode up Lower Merrill to Inspiration Point and then down Middle Merrill and eventually down Sunset and EP on Sunday morning with a friend. It's pretty obvious from the conditions of the trails on who's been riding them. Complete erosion and washouts due to tires braking away embankments and skidding, the switchbacks are getting a deep, sandy rut up to them, from all the hard brake sliding. We let a group of 7-9 DH riders pass us on Sunset, we stopped right between 2 tight switch backs, every single one carried way too much speed into the turn, locked-up the brakes, slid the rear tire out to re-align their bikes and proceeded to do the same on the next ones. It drove me insane seeing this, but what is one to do? I've spoken up in the past and it nearly turned physical. All I know is, if this looks this bad from a cyclist perspective, imagine what all the hikers are thinking as these guys charge towards them without yielding or regard. It's only a matter of time before we start losing trails due to irresponsible riders like these.



      JoeTruth riding a Ellsworth Id & Truth

      Posted:07/31/2002

    • Trail UpdateI agree with you! We rode that trail on Sat. from the tunnel down (of Coarse We rode up from the bottom 1st!) to Inspiration point & then from Inspiration point to The Hotel (a little over 23 miles) & some MORONS just Skidded on each & every Switch Back (not kidding! EVERY ONE) & then they would completly skid the trail up on perfectly clean sections! AMAZING....Either someone is over their head or they are very selfish!...Sad that we could loose this AWESOME TECHNICAL riding area to a few Brain Dead Downhillers!...Go to Big Bear & ride the Chair Lift!
      Matt Westlake a 43 year old Die-hard Enthusiast riding a Specialized Enduro w/Spynergy Xyclone Disks :) from Santa Clarita, CA

      Posted:07/31/2002

    • Trail UpdateSunset, Inspiration Pt, Merrill-Rode Sunset trail then Mt. Lowe to Inspiration Point, down Upper Sam Merrill to Echo and back to the car. And I’ve got to rant! Downhillers are going to ruin our opportunities to ride! We encountered at least 15 body-armor-clad, full-face-helmeted, skidding morons on our climb up Sunset trail. They’d come down on us out of control, locking their brakes and gouging the trail. Guys, you’ve gotta take it to the ski slopes, Snow Summit, Mammoth, whatever. Your disregard for the trail, and anyone coming uphill, gives the rest of the climbing mountain bikers a bad reputation. Yea, I know, there’s got to be some downhillers who are cool, but they know the type of jerks we saw. Anyway, the Sam Merrill trail from Inspiration Point to Echo Mountain was in great shape. And no 8” ruts entering every switchback!
      Ride rating: Advanced
      LP3 a 45 year old Cross-Country Rider riding a Airborne from South Pas

      Posted:07/30/2002

    • Trail UpdateMt Lowe-Merrill,Sunset,El Prieto-La Cuca and I rode the Mt. Lowe to El Prieto figure 8 ride on Sunday the 23rd. Starting at the top of Chaney Trail the first 2.7 miles of uphill is paved, making a steep ascent a little easier. Once at Inspiration Point, we headed down Sam Merrill to Echo Mtn. The trail was slightly sandy at times, but not as technically difficult as I remembered it a year ago last time we rode- but still fun. Made our way over to Sunset Trail, then down to Millard. The last of the 3 separate sections of the trail is very fast and smooth- lots of fun. Climbed out of Millard to El Prieto (1.5 miles?), and down El Prieto.
      While this trail gets lots of hype perhaps because it's more accessable to riders not willing to put in the extra uphill, I'd say that Middle Sam Merrill, Sunset, and even Idelhour trails are much more fun and technical.
      Ride rating: Advanced
      Ride distance: 17 Elevation change: 4000
      Singletrack=70% Dirt Road=20% Paved Path=10%
      D. Murphy a 31 year old Cross-Country Rider riding a Gary Fisher Sugar 3 from Valencia

      Posted:06/24/2002

    • Trail UpdateMerrills, Sunset And El-Prieto-
      Did a solo ride Sunday early am. Started from the house @ 6:15am (no one is stupid enough to go with me that early.) Climbed Lower Merrill to Echo to Mt. Lowe and eventually to Inspiration Point. The whole way up the climb, there was a thick marine layer that kept you nice and cool. Once @ Inspiration Point (4500 ft. level,) the sun was shinning and warm (63 degrees.) I laid on a bench to get some much-needed heat back in my system, it felt great. I lowered my saddle and started my descent down middle Merrill, once 1/2 way down middle, I re-entered into the thick marine layer. Nothing uneventful to share here, the trail is a blast as usual. Only problem was all the trail erosion and washouts caused mainly by weekend DH crowds. I climbed back up to Mt. Lowe from Echo Mtn. to the Sunset trailhead; Again, same fun as usual, 1-dabbed Silent Bob's graveyard and kept on. Around the middle of Sunset, I ran into the US Forestry Division along with a pack of Eagle scouts building steps with railroad ties and rocks to re-enforce the eroding switchbacks. I stopped and chatted a bit with the Ranger and complimented the whole gang on the great trail work being performed. Although some might complain that these steps take away from the technical obstacles normally presented on these switch backs, let's remember that the trail is not just for us riders and let's not take a one dimensional outlook on them; it's all good and much needed work. Kept on to Millard campground and climbed the short and subtle fire road to El-Prieto. Being that it was now 9:30 in the morning and it was Sunday, I thought for sure it would be a gridlock of riders to pass. To my surprise, except 2 hikers, the trail was empty, cool! I think largely attributed to ski resorts open now to bikes and the BB race over the weekend. Be aware and on the lookout for lots of Poison Oak on El-Prieto and Sunset. At one point on Sunset, I encountered an Asian couple hiking up the trail. Out of courtesy, the female pulled off into the bushes to give me the right to pass. I stopped and insisted on yielding to them (as I usually do,) then proceeded to tell her that wasn't a great idea, that brush she was leaning on was nothing but Posion Oak.
      Reached JPL lot and cruised 3.5 miles back home to meet my 10:00 curfew set by my SO, right on time! All in all, a great ride that can be done in 4 hrs. or less.
      The numbers below are from my residence and not from the trailhead, but if you were to start @ JPL and climb to the trailhead on Lake Ave. and Loma Alta., the statistics would almost be identical.
      Ride statistics: Climbing= 4000 feet
      Distance = 23 miles.
      Have fun and be courteous to others on the trail.


      Ride distance: 23 miles Elevation change: 4000
      Singletrack=65% Dirt Road=15% Paved Path=20%
      JoeTruth from Altadena, CA

      Posted:06/03/2002

    • Trail UpdateIdlehour Loop-I parked near the Mt. Wilson Toll Road, then took
      the Altadena Crest trail to lower Sam Merrill and
      Echo Mtn. Sam Merrill was a bit crowded with
      hikers, but the trail seemed to be one of the gentler
      singletracks for climbing in the S.G.s.
      I continued up the Mt Lowe Railway to Inspiration
      Point, had a snack, then started down Idlehour.
      Idlehour is in good shape. There is a tree down
      near the top, and the trail gets exposed and off
      camber as it descends near the streams, but
      nothing too bad. I had to hike a couple of sections
      as it climbed back out of the canyon, but most was
      rideable. There were a surprising number of
      hikers on the trail, but they might have been part of
      one very stretched out group.
      Coasted down the Toll Road to the car.
      Ride rating: Advanced
      Ride distance: 15 miles Elevation change: 4200 feet
      Singletrack=65% Dirt Road=35%
      LCS a 33 year old Weekend Warrior riding a Cannondale from Hollywood

      Posted:04/27/2002

    • Trail UpdateMt. Lowe-went up mt. lowe railway to inspiration point; down idlehour-beautiful singletrack trail. has plenty of poison oak, though. is downhill for 3.5 miles, then about 1.5 mile climbing and then down until it intersects mt. wilson toll road; up toll road until 7.5 mile marker; took mt. wilson singletrack down to pasadena. is about 6.5 miles. all downhill. nice and technical. is one of my favorite singletracks in san gabriel. ride was 21.5 miles total which included setting up a shuttle from end of mt. wilson singletrack to beginning of mt. lowe railway.
      lots of work (approx. 4,500 feet of climbing but was spectacular).
      Ride rating: Advanced
      Ride distance: 21 miles Elevation change: 4,500
      Singletrack=50%

      Posted:02/25/2002

    • Trail UpdateCastle CYN.-I would not recommend this trail unless you like technical hike'a'bike. Its been a few years since I've tried to ride up Castle CYN. I ended up hike'a'biking at least half a mile or more of steep rock slides litered with fallen trees.It may look good from Echo Mt. or Insperation point but what you can't see is the pain and misery of the middle. Stick to Mt. Lowe FR. for assending and middle Merril ST. for decending. Also Sunset ST. does make a better decent(more tech, less uphill traffic) than lower Merril.
      Swanny

      Posted:02/19/2002

    • Trail UpdateMt Lowe-parked at bottom of chaney trail by flashing yellow lights. climbed 1 mile until i hit road to mt. lowe. went to mt. lowe and then on to inspiration point. 2 choices are possible-castle canyon singletrack or sam merril singletrack. took sam merrill down to echo mtn. (approximately 2.75 miles). was a good intermediate trail. next time i will take castle canyon which is suppposed to be more technical. from echo mtn. i rode down lower sam merrill. needed to go slow 'cause of all the hikers. must have encountered between 25-30 hikers. everyone was friendly on the trail. the trail had too much traffic to be very enjoyable. not very technical either. rode street back to car.
      next time will climb from echo mtn. back to mt. lowe road and try sunset trail. san gabriels have some excellent trails!!
      Ride rating: Intermediate
      Ride distance: 13.4 miles Elevation change: unk.
      Singletrack=50%

      Posted:02/19/2002

    • Trail UpdateMt Lowe-The San Gabriels are a good place to ride after a short rainstorm. The soil composition is grainy and sandy and it packs down nicely (minimal mud) unlike the Santa Monica's or Santa Barbara which basically transform into giant mud hills. Been livin out here for 12-13 years and never even knew this old railway existed. I followed a route from a southern California guidebook which hits up the Sam Merrill trail as well as the Sunset Ridge trail(both awesome). I tell you I am a complete bone-lick for these mountain bike guidebooks. I can plant my ass on the couch and whittle away the hours pouring over the texts repeatedly. Trouble is they're seldom accurate out there in the real world. I was able to follow the route since the landmarks were well represented in the text but the mileages were WAY off, at least by 1 1/2 miles. When you're out there and you don't know where you're going this can be frustrating. Anyway, I can't say enough about the fun factor of these trails. Thrilling, technical, challenging, inspiring, makes you want to be a better rider. There are some rocky drop-offs and some hairy stair-stepped switchbacks. I was able to clean most of them but not all. Some took a few tries and experimentation with different lines. Amazingly, I lost no skin. Next time I'll hook up with El Prieto trail and make this already incredible ride even more incredible. I'm pretty sure I've ridden most of the singletrack in the S.G.'s: Strawberry Peak, Ken Burton, Mt Wilson, Winter Creek, Chilao, etc. If I'm leaving anything out, post it and let me know.


      Andy a 32 year old from Hollywood

      Posted:01/30/2002

    • Trail UpdateMerrill, Sunset, El Prieto-Mr Bear and Mr Truth hit the nail on the head.I can't add anything new to their posts. The trail is in great shape after the work done. Lots of traffic on Merrill but everybody was cool. Give this trail a try

      Ride rating: Intermediate
      Ride distance: 16 miles Elevation change:
      Mother a 38 year old Cross-Country Rider riding a Giant NRS 1

      Posted:08/05/2001

    • Trail UpdateLowe/Merrill/Prieto/etc-Overall the trail is in great shape, and offers one of the better Wilson pedalling descents. The Boy Scouts have cleared brush from Mt Lowe Railway Tr. and connectors (lower Lowe sections), leaving it wider and better than ever. Upper section is typically great. Still lots of technical and rocky stuff on the descent, and Sam Merrill Tr. is the same. Merrill has a couple of oak spots that are very easy to hit.

      Millard is getting a some spots of poison oak into the trail too, and significant narrowing of the vegi's in the upper sections. Trail is getting technically easier. Riders need to stop skidding. Even going fast, there is no reason to. Look ahead. El Prieto is still great and technical, with only a few minor spots of oak or encroaching plants.

      The alternate powerline/horse trail/park descent is also in great shape, and getting a nice bermed line in many places.

      As always, you are sharing the trail with hikers and equestrians. Ride aware and be courteous.

      Have Fun!
      Ride rating: Expert
      Ride distance: 8 miles Elevation change: 3000'
      Singletrack=90% Dirt Road=10%
      Airbear a Die-hard Enthusiast riding a phat double-squishy

      Posted:07/12/2001

    • Trail UpdateLower Merrill/Echo/Sunset/Prieto-
      Last night, my significant other gave me the green light for take off on a ride this morning, for those who know me, you know that's rear for me to ride on weekends, I was smiling ear to ear, I hardly could sleep, like a kid waiting to wake up and open presents on christmas morning.
      Rolled out of bed Sunday 6:15am very excited that I get to ride on a weekend, which is rare for me, made me a pot of Peete's Ethiopian Fancy Coffee, cleared the cob web's, filled up the camelbak and off I went by 7:15am from the pad solo.
      Climbed paved road for 2 miles to the Lower Sam Merrill trail head (Lake Ave. & Loma Alta Ave.), begun the ST climb, I always knew this climb is steep, but did not know how steep till I rode it W/Dabreeze & Tortuga on Thursday, Derek has an altimeter on his rig and he told me that we climbed 1700 feet in 2.5 miles on the ST, wow, now I'm gonna have an excuse for being slow on that climb and not feel bad about it.
      Finally got to the top of Sunset, lowered tire pressure, lowered saddle and off I went on the roller coaster ride, accept, you ever have one of those days where your balance is totally gone to sh*ts, well I was having one of those days today, kept losing balance on the easiest turns and drops, oh well, I'll live.
      Yesterday, 2-3-01, a group of trail maintenance volunteers was up here and had done lots of maintenance on Sunset, as a matter of fact, they have made the trail more difficult, one section on Sunset about 1/2 way down, the part where the trail kind of meets up with the paved road then starts dropping again, well, on the first left rock section, they have re-enforced the trail and have put in square railroad ties and have made steps in this section, at first, I walked it off and tried to find a ride able line, it's tough, the steps are not uniformed one after another, since they're on a turn, they sort of connect then make a "V", I found the left line make able, but still very difficult, it's loose and steep.
      They have also added some steps in some of the switch backs that did not have them before, this is all good maintenance, they did not take away from the trail, they just re enforced it to minimize erosion, plus all this ads a whole different element to the trail by stepping up it's technical difficulty, not that it wasn't an ass kicker already.
      Got down to the Millard ST, bombs away, this section also received some maintenance, cut back brush, etc.
      Of course being that it's Sunday, had to slow down and stop a couple of times due to hiker traffic, it's all good, people were all polite and every single one responded back to me with "good morning" and "have a nice day", Cool!
      Climbed out of Millard to the top of Prieto, by this time it was about 9:00am and the weather was feeling like a warm summer day, had to been at least 75-80 degrees already, felt good.
      As usual Prieto is fun, I stopped and laid down some branches and rocks towards the top where some idiots are cutting switchbacks AGAIN, I swear, I'm looking forward to catching some of these dumb asses to put them in they're place, I'll say it again, don't change the technical difficulty of the trail to meet your lower standard, rise to the the trails technical challenge.
      What was worst today was these huge Horse shoe tracks that had created crater size 1-2" holes, for those that defend horses, I don't about this, I mean I've seen less marks from a group of reckless DH guys skidding around every corner, not that that's any better, but horse backs seem to damage the trail much more than any bike I've seen, but they have the audacity to critise bikes and hold themselves so high and mighty, fu*k that, they are fuc*ing things up more than anything I've seen in all my days with bikes.
      All in all a great day to be out, looking forward to coming back (maybe Tuesday) to conquer some new sections of Sunset that were definitely tricky.

      As Arnold would say.. "I'll be back".

      Isn't life grand!

      Ride distance: 17 miles Elevation change: 3000
      JoeTruth a Cross-Country Rider riding a Ellsworth Truth from Altadena

      Posted:02/04/2001

    • Trail UpdateSnow-There is 4 inches of snow starting a mile below Inspiration point. Some parts are rideable, some parts not. My plan was to ride up the railway to the toll road, over to red box, down gabrielino, arroyo to jpl. The snow jacked that plan all up. I ended up having to go down middle merrill, echo, sunset, and el prieto. A nice ride, but I really wanted a piece of Gabrielino.

      I started the ride by having limit screw problems on my rear derailleur. After fiddling with the screws all the way up Chaney trail to no effect, I had to resort to violence and bent her back into line. Perfect. Now cruising up the pavement, nice cloud cover overhead, hit the dirt and before I knew it...snow. Being the versatile type guy that I am, I instantly turned into a hiker and walked up to Inspiration point.

      Had a couple bites of my chicken ultimo burrito from Baja fresh, I watched a perched hawk of some variety for a minute, dropped my seat and hit middle merrill. It was damn cold up there but the snow subsided quickly. My braking fingers were numb from the cold wind but I paid it no mind. That was a mistake. As I approached "the rocky right turn" I saw my line and prepared to slow to negotiate. I couldn't feel that my right hand fingers were not even on the lever!!! Not stopping in time, I went into a baseball slide to avoid going over the cliff. My Santa Cruz Bullit was hanging over the cliff secured only to my foot by my cleat. Thank god I didn't lube my pedals. I pulled her back up and assessed my sitaution.

      After a meeting with myself I noticed that it wasn't getting any warmer so I'd better continue. Down to the ruins, getting warmer, down to sunset trail, getting warmer. Sunset was sweet with those damn switchbacks. I took a nice digger on the one with the sheet metal hanging out about knee high. Made it to Millard alive, and finished up with El Prieto. It's amazing how adversity changes the complextion of a ride you've done a bunch of times. Great ride...I think?

      Good luck to you.
      Dusty Bottoms

      Posted:01/16/2001

    • Trail UpdateLower Merrill/Echo/Sunset/Prieto-The air was so fresh and crisp today, typical weather after a good rain storm.

      Climbed up Lower Merrill this morning @ 10:00 (1-13-01), after 3 days and 5-6 inches of rain, for most part the trail was in good shape, accept about 1/2 way up there was a section that rocks and dirt slid down on and you have to walk it, should be cleaned up pretty quickly.
      Crossed to Mt. Lowe Fireroad via Echo Mtn. Connector and that also had 1 section that had a bunch of rocks and dirt where you have to hike-a-bike.
      Down Sunset Ridge, I actually saw a couple of patches of snow, since it's a north facing trail, it doesn't get as much sun as others.
      Trail was in pretty good shape considering the recent rainfall, there was a few tracks of some other morning riders that were riding pretty recklessly(judging from the brake slides), some new erosion, a bunch of new rocks that have littered the trail (fun).
      Shot down lower Sunset ST to Millard campground, this little section as always is fun, lots of little jumps and speed shoots.
      Climbed the fireroad for 1 mile to the trailhead of El-Prieto, cruised through it so carefully, trying very hard not to skid, unfortunatly, this trail is so heavily used, it already looked ripped apart, and this just since this morning, I don't understand why guys ride so aggresivly on such fragile trails after heavy rains.
      Other than that, a great 2.5 hr. and 18 mile loop right from my house in Altadena.

      Ride rating: Intermediate
      Ride distance: 18 miles Elevation change: 2000
      Singletrack=60% Dirt Road=20% Paved Path=20%
      JoeTruth a 36 year old Cross-Country Rider riding a Ellsworth Truth from Altadena

      Posted:01/13/2001

    • Trail UpdateMt.Wilson Via Mt.Lowe Railway...-Took the Lower Echo Mtn Trail from Altadena to Echo Mtn. The trail is in great shape! Turned left to get to the Mt.Lowe Fire Road.The Single Track is in awesome shape! Turned right to Inspiration Point and stopped and napped for a bit :-) The fireroad to the Mt.Wilson Road is also in great shape! Very scenic. Reached Mt.Wilson Skyline Park in this very hot day w/ no water in my Camel Back! Sprinted to the water faucet and started drinking the water and cool my self off. Then I noticed the itty bitty sign that say's the water is contaminated, and in the process of being decontaminated. haha!!!! I feel sick.

      Fast ride down. I met a really bitter hiker on the Lower Sam Merril Trail or Echo Mtn Trail. He would not let me pass!!! I finally asserted myself and told him to MOVE NOW!. Sorry.


      Ride rating: Novice
      Ride distance: 24 miles Elevation change: 3,500
      Singletrack=25% Dirt Road=75%
      Charles a OLD year old Cross-Country Rider riding a Specialized Fsr xc from Pasadena, Ca

      Posted:05/29/2000

    • Trail UpdateVisibility...Zero.-Should have brought my infra-red goggles for this spectacular ride. Parked at JPL as you would to hit Brown, El Prieto, etc. Rode through the hood up Lincoln, to Alta Loma, over to Chaney and hit the climb. Thick fog prevailing throughout, however not enough to obsure view of a fairly large waterfall accross the canyon. Once on the dirt you begin your history lesson of the Mt. Lowe railway, I must have read about 20 signs describing the old days. Granite faces abound while you twist and turn your way to inspiration point. Once there I took the hard right onto Sam Merrill.

      Dropped into rolling singletrack through thick woods and nice tech sections here and there until you hit the ridgeline sections. Did I hear you say that you like switchbacks? Well, the ones hear will keep your speed in check as they seem to beg you to take a dive off the side for a nice parting gift... how about an air rescue!!! I hit a Yucca plant while leaning into a switchback and punctured my rear tire. I didn't have a dollar bill handy so I had to resort to McGyver method #2, gool 'ol duct tape.

      Had lunch at the ruins and took my final exam on Mt. Lowe railway 101. Small climb on the Echo trail back to the pavement to hit Sunset trail. This descent just keeps getting better, more drops, rocks, and switchbacks. A couple good speed chutes and your at the bottom for your small climb up Brown Mtn. to El Prieto.

      I must say El Prieto is much sweeter as a dessert, rather than a main course. Water crossings and ultra green scenery end this ride in style. I must say, some of the surfaces up on top make you think you are far, far away from L.A. and with the thick fog covering up the city views I could have been anywhere. Insane ride, do yourself a favor and go ride somewhere you never have before. It keeps you humble and nothing beats not knowing what lies around that next bend. Good luck to you.
      Dusty Bottoms

      Posted:04/24/2000

    • Trail UpdateMt. Lowe Railway Loop-Take the mount lowe trail which is paved for several miles past the echo mountain trail (this trail leads to the ruins of the echo mountain resort). The trail turns into a dirt road. After a couple of miles, you should see the Sam Merril trail on your right. This is a sweet singletrack descent back to the Echo mountain resort ruins. This singletrack is not for beginners but intermediate and advanced riders will enjoy all the dropoffs, protruding boulders and tight turns. Ride up the echo mountain trail back to the mount lowe trail. Start back down and look for the Sante Fe Trail to your right. Trailhead is less then 1/4 mi away. Take the Santa Fe trail back to the complete the loop. The Santa Fe Trail offers more singletrack with tight and steep switchbacks. Total distance approx. 10-12 miles.
      Singletrack=50% Dirt Road=15% Paved Path=35%
      a Die-hard Enthusiast riding a Stumpjumper from Hermosa Beach

      Posted:03/01/1999

    • Trail UpdateMt. Lowe Railway-Rode up from Millard camp ground on 1-30-99. At the 3 mile mark the snow on the road made this a hike. From the Idlehour cutoff to the access road the snow is calf deep. Wait for the thaw or bring your boots.
      Chimm Chimm a 35 year old Weekend Warrior riding a two wheeler from S. Pas

      Posted:02/01/1999

    • Trail UpdateTo Mt Wilson Skyline Park !-For beginning mtn. bikers, Mount Lowe Fire road 2N50 is an easier alternative in reaching Mount Wilson Skyline Park which is the area where all the Radio Towers are located high above Pasadena. (Compared to Mt. Wilson Toll road. Starting at the top of Chaney trail, you will need to ride the first 2.5 miles of steep paved fire road...approx 1600 ft elevation gain.

      The fire road grade eases up tremendously when you hit dirt. At approximately mile 6, is the trail head for SAM MERRIL TRAIL which will take you to Echo Mountain ruins for an easy connection to Mount Lowe Fire road. To the left of this trail is the fire road that will take you to Inspiration point, where you will find a shelter rebuilt by volunteers in 1996 using the old foundation of the Alpine Tavern era. To the left of this fire road is the IDLEHOUR TRAIL which will take you to Mount Wilson fire road..which is 5 miles away. The outer most fire road to your left is 2N50. Turn hard left..and follow until you reach the Paved Mt. Wilson road. Caution: At approximately mile 7-7.5 you need to follow 2N50 by turning hard right. After going through Mueller Tunnel you should reach the paved road to Mt. WIlson and turn rigt. You will reach Mount WIlson Skyline park. Total Mileage to Wilson is approximately 11.5-12 miles.

      Charles a 30 year old Cross-Country Rider riding a Specialized FSR comp from Pasadena / Santa Barbara

      Posted:10/03/1998

    • Trail UpdateInspiration Point-Rode to Inspiration Point and came down the Sam Merrill trail on 5-23-98. The desert broom is in full bloom and the air is sweet, making the grind up the paved section bearable
      The Sam Merrill Trail is in good condition, although the lower section dropping down onto Echo Mtn. demand even more attention than normal.
      Climbing back to Ye Olde Tavern from Echo Mtn, pick up the Millard Trail on the other side of the pavement. The top section is in good condition but the bottom section is pretty rough after the El Nino. It is also covered in POISON OAK - BEWARE! I would recommend popping off the singletrack where it comes out at the water tower and pavement about half way down and taking the pavement the rest of the way. Singletrack=50% Dirt Road=30% Paved Path=20%
      Chris Francoeur a 34 year old Weekend Warrior riding a Ventana from Corona del Mar

      Posted:05/28/1998

    • Trail UpdateEcho Mtn. From Mt. Lowe Railway-The Echo Mountain Trail is a nice side trip from the Mt. Lowe Railway. At the point on the Railway where the pavement ends, there is a junction with the Echo Mountain Trail. Go east on this trail and traverse a crumbling cliff! This trail is not exceptionally difficult, but the exposure will make you quake in your SIDI's!! Near the top of Echo Mountain, the exposure eases and the trail improves, and the occasional whup launches you skyward. On the top of Echo Mountain are the ruins of the Rubio Pavilion and the Echo Mountain Inclined Railway. Return the way you came. Do not ride down the lower leg of the Echo Mountain Trail!! This section is closed to bicycles because it is very popular with hikers and equestrians.
      Singletrack=100%
      Tom Kenney a 29 year old Cross-Country Rider riding a Klein Pinnacle from Reseda, CA E-mail: tkenney@bearcomp.,com URL: Tom's Page

      Posted:07/10/1997

    • Trail UpdateMt. Lowe Rd. To Gabrielino Tr.-The Mt. Lowe Railway makes an excellent loop trip when connected with the Gabrielino Trail, which starts just down the Mt. Wilson Road from the top of the Mt. Lowe Railway. Park at Lake and Alta Loma (parking for Echo Mtn. Trail) and ride down Alta Loma to Cheney Trail. Ride up Cheney Trail to the parking for the Mt. Lowe Railway. Ride the Railway to its end at the Mt. Wilson Road. Ride the Mt. Wilson Road to CA-2 (Angeles Crest Hwy) and Red Box Ranger Stn. From here, the Gabrielino Trail leaves to the west. Ride the Gabrielino all the way to the Arroyo Seco. Continue down the Arroyo Seco Trail until a path leads up and east back to Alta Loma. Ride Alta Loma back to the parking area. This same loop may also be done by riding up the Mt. Wilson Toll Road, but this variation is much steeper and at least 8 miles longer!
      Singletrack=40% Dirt Road=30% Paved Path=30%
      Tom Kenney a 29 year old Cross-Country Rider riding a Klein Pinnacle from Reseda, CA URL: Tom's Page

      Posted:07/10/1997

    • Trail UpdateMt. Lowe Railway-Check Out the May/June issue of Sketchy Trails for a trail map and additional info. This "epic" ride includes some killer climbs, some killer views, and some potentially KILLER downhill singletrack. The singletrack is similar to that on the San Juan Trail in Orange County. To put it into the words of the guys at Sketchy Trails it can be, "clean the chamois scary.." The view from Inspiration Point, on a clear day, can be incredible.
      Singletrack=60% Dirt Road=25% Paved Path=15%
      a Die-hard Enthusiast riding a GT from LA County

      Posted:06/20/1997

    • Trail UpdateMillard Canyon Slide-Start your ride at the closed steel gate. The first 3.5 miles are a steady 1600 Foot climb on an expsed south facing slope (so get there early). At the end of the pavement you come to a small sign that indicates the location of Ye Old Tavern where the Mt. Lowe railway would pick up passangers. To your left is a rock face with the start of the Millard Trail (12W13). Here you will begin the descent down tree shaded single track over moderately technical track wich allows for speed and is blessed by great views. You can practice speed descents on the initial sitchbacks. In About 1 mile you come to a junction with a paved road. This will take you back to the paved road you took on the way up. Notice the water trowel on you left used by horses an humans alike in days of old. Continue on the single track to your right which will eventually bring you to Millard Campground. Look out on this trail for Ratlesnakes (yikes!!) they like to sun around here. From the campground just follow the road south which turns paved at the parking lot. Follow the road for a shortclimb taking you back to your start point. Enjoy!!!
      Singletrack=60% Paved Path=40%
      Serg O a 31 year old Cross-Country Rider riding a Bulldog Hardtail from Pasadena, CA

      Posted:06/14/1997

    • Trail UpdateAltadena To Eaton Saddle-The first 3.5 miles on paved fire road are very steep since you climb 1600 ft. From the junction to the trail to Echo Mountain up to Ye Olde Tavern, the trails is dirt and follows the grade of the Mt. lowe Railroad. This is a very nice trail. It is worth the climb from Millard Canyon. The rest of the road up to Eaton is nicely graded in pure pleasure. From the site of the tavern to Eaton Saddle (at the Mt. Wilson Road) there are only 900 feet elevation gain. If you want to log miles, coast down the Mt. Wilson Road to Angeles crest (Hwy 2) and coast down to Altadena over 20 miles. Hope you have good brakes.
      Dirt Road=70% Paved Path=30%
      Francisco Prieto a 46 year old Die-hard Enthusiast riding a Cannondale F-1000 from Los Alamitos, CA USA .com

      Posted:06/14/1997

    • Trail UpdateMt. Lowe Railway-The trail starts at the junction (right) and ends up at the Mt. Wilson Rd. about 4 miles from the top of the Mt. Wilson Toll Rd. The 1st 2.5 miles of pavement are a real uphill crank.

      Posted:06/14/1997


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