- Wednesday, June 19, 2024

Southern California Trails

  • Mount Wilson Trail - #MountWilsonTrail

    Socal - Los Angeles County - Sierra Madre NickNames: #MountWilsonTrail don benito's trail

    The Sierra Madre Trail head is located approximately 2.0 miles from the Mount Wilson Toll road along the Winter Creek Trail. This trail is best done starting from Altadena and ending in Sierra Madre. The City ride back to your vehicle is easy.
    210 freeway exit Altadena Dr. and head towards the mountains. Turn right on Crescent Dr. & turn right on Pinecrest to the Mount Wilson fire road trail head marked by two locked gates and an access gate. ***Please observe the enforced parking restrictions *** While you are observing, kindly be courteous to my neighbors and avoid blaring your radios loudly and changing in public. THANKS!

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    • Trail UpdateIf you want to avoid the major slide by the bridge you'll have to detour and hike a bike across the wash and the cruise up the horse trail. Once on the Mt. Wilson toll road you have to HAB over two very small landslides. After that you're into Henninger Flats and then on up to Mt. Wilson via the toll road.

      The major slide slide is supposed to be cleared next year according to an article that was published in the Pasadena Star News earlier this year.


    • Trail UpdateLandslide Closes Trailhead-I went up to this trailhead today, and it was closed due to landslide. Does anybody know the best place to tie into the trail after the landslide?
      moodray a 37 year old Die-hard Enthusiast riding a Santacruz Superlight


    • Trail Update4 of us rode this trail today the 27th. Unlike Oliver it took us 3 hours to ride to the top. We encounter fog half way up and by the time we made it to the top it was frezzing. From the top of Mt Wilson we rode down to Red Box in almost zero visibility at some spots. By the time we made it to Red Box we had frost on the knuckles of our gloves. IT WAS COLD !!!. Halfway down to switzers campground it started to drizzle and then rain. I was supprised to see there was not much water in the creek. I was expecting more but was glad there wasn't. Some sections were super tricky and rideable. Some others were a big no-no.... We started at 9:15 AM from Pine Crest and were back at JPL at 3:50 PM. After this awesome ride we drove down to Continental Burger (great place to grub)for some much needed calories intake.
      Ride rating: Expert
      Ride distance: 27 Elevation change: 4500
      Singletrack=50% Dirt Road=35% Paved Path=15%
      Tecun Uman a 35 year old Weekend Warrior riding a id from USofA


    • Trail UpdateMt Wilson Toll Road-Rode this on 11-26-2004, day after Thanksgiving. The rock slides along the upper section are the worst I've seen - had to get off quite a few times. Still, managed to stay close to my usual time - 2 hours 9 minutes this time. Lots of kids playing in the snow at the top. Like many others I ride back down the Mt Lowe fire road - just be sure to take lots of layers up with you this time of year - the windchill on the road down the back is Freeeezing! Upper sections of Mt Lowe dirt road also have 1-2" of snow.
      Ride rating: Intermediate
      Ride distance: 15 miles Elevation change: 4700ft
      Dirt Road=100%
      Oliver a 44 year old Weekend Warrior riding a Gary Fisher Mt Tam from Studio City


    • Trail UpdateToll Road-Sounds like you rode up the Mt. Wilson Toll Road not the Mt. Wilson Trail which starts in the Sierra Madre area and leads to the Winter Creek trail and the Toll Road. Good time to ride the Toll Road though, less foot traffic and cool, maybe too cool for some.
      Ride rating: Intermediate
      Ride distance: 9 miles Elevation change:
      Truck Trail=100%
      mtbcl a 42 year old Cross-Country Rider riding a SC SL from Covina


    • Trail UpdateMount Wilson Trail-Rode this trail from Pinecrest to Mt.Wilson on 11-20-04.
      Man was it a workout!!! We had a group of 3 guys. They wanted to turn back 2 miles past Henninger flats. We started at about 8:30am and got to the summit of Mt. Wilson at about 3:00pm. Overall I think this is a great ride, but carry enough supplies if riding to the top!! My buddies learned the hard way. About 1 mile from the top, a couple of landslides force you to hike your way over it. Saw a couple of bear droppings on the way up. Keep your eyes and ears peeled!!!
      Just starting a 24 year old Weekend Warrior riding a '05 Specialized Rockhopper from Alhambra


    • Trail UpdateReally Good-Ride today.I've never done the Mt Wilson Trail before and I can't believe I've been missing this gem.It was a really good one.The singletrack is similar in technical difficulty to Tunnel,not as difficult,but similar.Lots of exposure,but the trail is fairly wide or there is a line through most of the rock gardens.Steep in some places with a substancial penalty for failure.The switchbacks at the top are some of the tightest I've ever seen and I'm not sure if they are even makeable but I'd love to try them again.Seen no other riders on this trail and only a few hikers.We climbed the Toll Rd to get there.Well worth the effort.The only down side is having to ride the street back to the vehicles,but you can stop for some really good pizza on Baldwin on the way back.We had a group of 7 today with some of the guys experincing a real trail for the first time so I got a real good look at the trail.These poor guys really worked hard today.Maybe not the best choice for a beginner,although they weren't really beginners,just hadn't experienced that type of ride yet.I rode up to my truck and drove back to pick them up.And it was summed up by one rider as "Thank God".He earned his mountain biking wings today.
      Pain Freak riding a Surly Turner from The 909


    • Trail UpdateI don't think any of these routes will work for the guy who asked the original question- he's on a Demo 9 for chrissakes!
      So no, Jay, you can not connect the Mt Wilson trail to El Prieto!
      Yes, you can connect the Merrills and Sunset with EP as described below.


    • Trail UpdateMt. Wilson To JPL-I agree with the last post. Mckcy's directions are correct. Because if you ride "down" the Sam Merrill trail from the junction of the Idlehour trail-Mt. Lowe railway-Sam Merrill trails you will end up at the Echo Mtn. Ruins. Then you would have to ride over to the paved Chaney trail, and then down it to the Millard campgrounds or you could ride up the paved Chaney trail to the start of the Sunset trail and follow it down to the Millard campgrounds and then over to El Prieto. A couple months ago I rode from the parking lot by JPL up the El Prieto trail then over to Millard campgrounds. From there I rode up Sunset trail to the dirt portion of the Mt. Lowe railway and then up to the Idlehour trailhead. I continued up to inspriation point and while resting talked to a couple hikers that had hiked up the Idlehour trail the day before. They basically told me it would be downhill for 3 miles to the Idlehour campgrounds and then just up another 1.5 miles to the Mt. Wilson tollroad. They said it was very shaded and the trail was easy to follow. They also said they probably wouldn't take a bike on it, but then they said they weren't very good mt. bikers...I decided to ride down the Idlehour trail to the toll road and then back to my car on the road. Personally I found the Idlehour trail to be a very tough trail. There were a ton of bugs. It was overgrown, like a lot of singletracks. And I'd probably be happy never to go on it again. I wouldn't ride "up" from the toll road. Riding "down" from the junction to the toll road took me all of 1.5 hours. I can't remember exactly, but that ride took a little over 4 hours. The entire ride is definitely possible, but you better allow all-day and then some. Good luck with that adventure!
      Ride distance: Elevation change: a lot
      MtbCL a 41 year old Cross-Country Rider riding a Superlight from Covina


    • Trail UpdateMt. Wilson To El Prieto-Don't know about the first part of your directions, but this part:
      "At the junction you need to go on the trail leading north uphill to a paved road(0.8 miles) Take the paved road down to Millard Campground (2.4 miles)."

      I can definitely say that rather than taking the paved road down to Millard Campground, you'd be much better off taking the Sunset Trail down to Millard Campground. Once on the paved road, heading down (this is actually part of the Mt. Lowe Railway), the Sunset trailhead will be on your right hand side, not very far down.
      Just keep a look out for any singletrack that takes off down the right hand side of that paved road (as you are going down it) and you'll end up down in Millard Campground. Once in Millard Campground, cross the creek and follow the fireroad a little more than a mile up and you'll see El Prieto on your left.


    • Trail UpdateMt. Wilson Trail To El Prieto-I just bought a Mt. Wilson map at REI yesterday so it's funny that someone would ask what was asked in the last post. I'm not sure if it's practical but according to the map you can do it. I'm not 100% sure if the is really possible so if someone finds some errors in this post please feel free to correct me.

      Start on the Mt. Wilson Trail to Mt. Wilson Toll RD. Take the Toll road DOWN(South) to Idlehour trail(4.1 miles). Take Idlehour trail north to Sam Merrill Trail(4.5 miles). From here you can go down Sam Merrill to a trail junction near Echo Mt.(2.7 miles). At the junction you need to go on the trail leading north uphill to a paved road(0.8 miles) Take the paved road down to Millard Campground (2.4 miles). On the north end of Millard you should find a fire road (maybe Brown Mt. Fire Road). Take this up 0.9 miles and turn north and continue up the El Prieto.

      I found all this info on the Mt. Wilson map. I HAVE NOT TESTED THIS ROUTE so I am not 100% sure if it is passable. As far as I can see on the map all of the trails hook up. If you want to do this ride you really should get the map I have because there are some parts that look a little hairy(lots of zigs and zags). I got my map for $8.50 at REI. If anyone has done this or knows of a better route please post it. I am kind of curious now. Looks like an epic ride. From my map I get about 26 miles from the start of the Mt. Wilson Tr. to the end of El Prieto. Here is an elevation profile: 960, 4980(toll road), 3140, 4480, 3200, 3450, 1870, 2020, 1210(Arroyo Seco). CRAZY STUFF, MAN!
      Ride rating: Advanced
      Ride distance: 26 miles Elevation change: 4020
      Singletrack=70% Dirt Road=20% Paved Path=10%
      Mrkcy a 27 year old Cross-Country Rider riding a Giant-Iguana from Temple City


    • Trail UpdateDoes anyboby know if you can connect the Mt. Wilson trail to el prieto? Thanks in advance.
      Jay a 33 year old Weekend Warrior riding a demo 9 pro from granada hills


    • Trail UpdateMt. Wilson Toll Road-go up toll rd. for 7.5 miles, then head down mt. wilson singletrack. is in great shape and offers much technical singletrack riding. definitely worth making the steep uphill grind on wilson toll road. bugs were a pain in the shady areas. after singletrack ends (6-7 miles) take streets back to start of toll road. is about 20 miles roundtrip and approx. 4,000' elevation gain.
      Ride rating: Advanced
      Ride distance: 20 miles Elevation change: 4,000
      Singletrack=50% Dirt Road=50%


    • Trail UpdateRode the Toll Road/Mt. Wilson Trail loop on 3-21-04. I prefer to park near the bottom of the Mt. Wilson Trail, at Mira Monte Park (corner of Mira Monte and Mountain Trail in Sierra Madre). This way you get the pavement ride over at the beginning, and finish on a nice downhill note. The route over to the Mount Wilson Toll Road is actually a little over five miles. Head west on Mira Monte to Baldwin - Left on Baldwin – Right on Sierra Madre – Right on Sierra Madre Villa – Straight on New York – Right on Altadena – Right on Crescent – Right on Pinecrest.

      The Toll Road climb was its usual self - Steep and smooth to Henniger, less steep the rest of the way, but with intermittent sections of rocks and deep sand to negotiate, and of course, clouds of annoying gnats buzzing around your face. Reached the summit to find Skyline Park gated, locked and signed “closed until spring”. Fortunately, a gentleman who works up there opened up the gate for us. Water is currently available inside the park, but don’t rely on it.

      The uppermost section of the Mt. Wilson Trail singletrack, between the Skyline Park parking lot and the Toll Road/Mt. Harvard junction, is in pretty good shape. This section is usually very brushy, but right now it’s all passable. The next section, from the Toll Road to the Upper Winter Creek/Mt. Wilson Trail junction, is in fine shape – great flow and lots of fun! Continuing on down the first stream crossing, the trail is very rough, requiring a few dismounts. Heading down to Orchard Camp, the trail is in great shape, as is the rest of the trail on down to Sierra Madre. The re-routed section near First Water is a definite improvement.

      This trail sees a lot of hiker traffic on the weekends, especially between Orchard Camp and the bottom. Please ride in control and be courteous to other trail users. Definitely use a bell if you have one.

      Ride rating: Advanced
      Ride distance: 23 miles Elevation change: 5,200 feet
      Singletrack=35% Dirt Road=45% Paved Path=20%
      JimN a 38 year old riding a Seven Sola from La Crescenta


    • Trail UpdateThiefs...watch Out-Bad News....read the link below
      OCTOMAN a Downhiller URL: http://www.mybikesite.com/socal/messages/messages/123470.htm


    • Trail UpdateMt. Wilson Trail To Sierra Madre-Only my third time on this trail and I always amazed at how exciting it is to ride it. Traction was great !!! Weather was really cool on the shade but nice whenever the sun was on you. Thee was water on the creek south of Orchard camp. North of O Camp this trail has some sections that have changed slightly. Past First Water the trail has been re-routed a few feet higher (the old trail has been fenced off) and it actually works better sice you can stay on the saddle longer and work your way through. There is some marked spots at the very bottom of this trial past the stair case where some errosion has happened.
      Ride distance: 6 miles I think.. Elevation change: 3700 ft loss
      Singletrack=98% Dirt Road=2%
      TECUN UMAN a 35 year old Cross-Country Rider riding a Color Naranja from Califas.....


    • Trail UpdateHey Gordo-I'm not sure what route you took coming down, but there are a number of options.I rode Mt Wilson Toll Road 3 times this year the last time about 3 weeks ago and we add a little road to it to make it more like a 30 miler and I've seen at least 5 to 10 other riders every time I went up.The routes down are all great,but the San Gabrielino is my favorite followed real close by the Upper Winter Creek trail.I just hope you had a chnce to do these two.Yeah, we are a little spoiled down here.
      Pain Freak a I dont want to talk about it year old Cross-Country Rider riding a Renrut 02/Surly 1X1 (Mighty Whitey) from Fontana


    • Trail UpdateMount Wilson-sierra Madre-This trail rocks!!!!!
      Advanced ride up mount wilson but unreal veiws and BIG payoff at the top!
      I'm from San francisco and grew up riding Mount Tam.This fire road is challenging and you do gain some elevation but theres a good rythym to it.Felt just like home.:}
      If you dont do the last mile and 3/4,then your not only a wuss but your missing out on one of the most spectacular views in all of L.A.
      Once you go back down to the sierra madre trail, Gel it up ,strap it down and get ready to ride baby!!
      This singletrack thrill a minute ride will get you pumped.At least it did me.
      As good as it's gonna get without going to Downieville.
      In some ways comprable to Downieville.Its amazing how this trail is cut.
      Technical,fast,exposed.Over an hour looonnnnggggg.
      Thats it in a nutshell.
      I rode it 3 times in two months and saw-------1 rider,RIDING DOWN MOUNT WILSON!!!!
      If you live in L.A. and you haven't done this ride,your missin oput.
      Get on it!!!

      Ride distance: 20 Elevation change: over 4k
      Singletrack=50% Dirt Road=40% Paved Path=10%
      GoGoGordo a 42 year old Die-hard Enthusiast riding a 2000 Santa Cruz Superlight from San Francisco


    • Trail UpdateMt Wilson Toll Rd-Lit SA Canyon-Mt. Wilson Toll Rd.-Mt Wilson-Little Santa Anita Canyon Loop: Did this ride early this summer but just now getting into posting trial descriptions. I parked my car at the Little Santa Anita Canyon trailhead in Sierra Madre. (Take 210 FWY, Exit Baldwin Ave go north, Right Sierra Madre Blvd., Left Mountain Trail Ave, follow around curve, park at park.)

      I rode from the trailhead to the beginning of the Mt Wilson Toll Road on the streets then jumped on the dirt toll road. Very long and hot slog up to the top of Mt Wilson, approx 9 miles and 4450ft. of elevation gain. I then headed back down the Toll Road to the Little Santa Anita Canyon trail, near Mt Hayward.

      This trail is not for the faint of heart. Very steep and technical in the upper sections leading to just very technical lower section. All single track hiking trail. Be cautious of other hikers, you will likely see plenty of them in the lower section.

      Great loop, not something you do every weekend though. I lost like 2 pounds that day even after a Double Double for lunch. All in all, the ride is a hair over 20 miles.
      Ride rating: Expert
      Ride distance: 20 miles Elevation change: ~5000
      Singletrack=40% Paved Path=10% Truck Trail=50%
      MtnFiend a 27 year old Die-hard Enthusiast riding a Specialized Enduro S-Works, homebrew 2spd hardtail from Torrance, CA


    • 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

      SPREAD THE WORD!!!!!!!!!!


    • Trail UpdateMY FIRST-im 17 and new to mountian biking. i biked to the top of chantry, found the mount wilson trail and followed the 6.5 mile trail. i made it about 3 miles then fell off the side, wich is a cliff and landed in Hogee Campground. I spent 3 days in the hospital and had to be airlifted out of the spot... what an adventure.. cant wait to climb the trail agian that almost claimed my life. I had no helmet, no pads and fell over 100 feet down the side of the mountian and survived with no broken bones.. just a hell of alot of abrasions a f'ed up hip and nerve damage to my back.. i made front page news though in the sierra madre paper ;)
      Ride rating: Advanced
      Russ a 17 year old Die-hard Enthusiast riding a Trek Alpha from sierra madre


    • Trail UpdateMt Wilson Trail-10:20 AM Started my ride from Sierra Madre. Right about 1 block down from the MT Wilson TH in Sierra Madre Rode the streets all the way to Mt. Wilson Toll Road TH. Ugly experience that of riding on the streets. 1¾ miles short of the top to the TV and Radio anttenas I turned right on to Mt Wilson Trail. Make sure you keep it to the right and about half a mile down you turn left keep going straight down till you find the itersection to Winter Creek and Mt. Wilson Trail. Yeah the dude below its right this trail is a smasher. 7+ miles of pure technical down hill. I ofcourse did not clear all the obstacles, that is why Im still alive. But it sure was worth all the climbing up Mt Wilson TR. Only ecounter 5 hikers and 2 trail runners. Cool !!! Im not sure what the milage or the elevation gain but who cares. I made it back to my carro at about 2 PM. I wouldn't suggest doing this trail on the weekends, for safety's sake.
      Ride rating: Expert
      Ride distance: aboot 14 +/- miles Elevation change: Plentiful
      Singletrack=51% Paved Path=6% Truck Trail=42%
      TECUN UMAN a 33 year old Cross-Country Rider riding a Pumpkin colour bike from LOS ANGELIS


    • Trail UpdateMt Wilson Trail-Yikes!! What a smasher. Earlier, I had posted what I THOUGHT was the Mt Wilson Trail but it was actually Sturtevant combined with Mt Zion and Upper and Lower Winter Creek Trail, an awesome ride in itself. This particular trail however is incredible. Took the advice from the previous guy and parked off of Sierra Madre. Actually, it was off of Baldwin street directly at the base of the trail. This is the perfect place to park although I'm sure it's a zoo on the weekends. Anyway the 5 mile pavement ride is OVER before you know it as you end up at the base of the historic toll road. With fresh legs, the climb really isn't that bad but the previous day I had just done a 15 miler so I was hurting a bit. At any rate there's much to look at and think about and enjoy along the way. There had better be as there's a good 7-8 miles of UP. The singletrack trailhead sign is a welcome sight. I collapsed here for a bit, took off my SOAKED, freezing jersey, and slapped on the kneepads and jacket which both proved to be much needed. This trail is amazing. Sure, the Santa Monica's are great. Wouldn't trade em' for anything. Orange County has its share of awesome rides as well but for my money, the San Gabriel's are the goddam funnest of the bunch. They simply offer the most fun, beautiful, technical and challenging trails in the area. To top it off, for me anyway, they also offer the least amount of DRIVING time. Glorious! Any-way, the time came for 6.5 miles of DOWN. A sheer blast! Sharp switchbacks, imbedded rock sections, shady green forests, psycho stairstep hairpin turns, yes my friends, it's all here. Is it all ride-able? Well, no--not for me anyway. I walked some of the crazier sections but then again I like my spine the way it is. In reality, it would take some trials skills to clean it all. With some good fundamental skills under your belt though, you should be fine. Nearing the end, it's easy to see how this trail probably becomes heavily utilized on week-ends and holidays. Do yourself a favor; call in sick on a weekday and tear it up then. You won't regret it.
      Ride distance: miles 20 Elevation change: Yes, it sure does change.
      Andy a 32 year old Die-hard Enthusiast riding a GTi-drive from Hollywood


    • Trail UpdateStart This One From The Top-This is a great ride! Rode up the tollway starting at about 7:00 and made the top at 10:00, just as the observatory opened. Got what amounted to a private tour of the 100 inch telescope, then started down the Mt Wilson trail, which does have an upper section that starts inside the Skyline Park. It's to the right in a break in the red split-rail fence. It is marked. It will dump you back onto the tollroad, which you ride another about 1/2 mile then catch the main 7-mile segment down.

      This trail is a beauty! It reminds me of a combination of the Santa Ana River trail and the San Juan trail, although it is probably more technical than either one. Lots and lots of cliffside traverse and great rock gardens that are challenging but not life threatening.

      My only advise is if you do the loop we did without a shuttle in the summertime, you should park over in Sierra Madre near the low point (exit point of the Mt Wilson Trail) and do all the road work at the beginning. The road work was not that much vertical (~500 feet) but on blacktop in smog and traffic and 95-degree heat it is brutal, especially after a long ride.
      Ride rating: Advanced
      Ride distance: 22.7 miles Elevation change: about 6000
      Singletrack=40% Dirt Road=40% Paved Path=20%
      Pete a 43 year old Cross-Country Rider riding a Cannodale V-200FR from Los Alamitos


    • Trail UpdateGood Job Drew!-Drew, I think I was one of the DHers you encountered (I was on the black/blue GT DHi). If you are who I thought, you had a 2000-model XCR 2000 with discs added. I know of the other trail you did, and it's a lot of fun too. Although we mostly ride our DH bikes up there, I've done it all on my XC bike. However, on the DH bike, I can hit rocks much harder and faster - in fact aiming for them. I wear full gear to help prevent injuries. Soon after you saw us, one of our riders messed up his hand in a rocky section.

      Weather at Wilson was perfect: not too hot or of course not too cold. There were a fair amount of hikers, but not as many as the previous Sunday. Please be nice and come to a complete stop for them, and they'll be equally nice and, in fact, surprised that you're so nice (perhaps because a few bikers have blazed by them at speed.

      Sure we shuttle the rides, but that doesn't mean we don't get the opertunity to get a workout riding our 45+-pound bikes up some of the hills. (I've even climbed out of Chantry on the paved road on my DHi with a 44/30-tooth gearing - now that's an accomplishement!

      Drew, email me if you're interested in doing some fun shuttle runs (usually 3 seperate runs, taking nearly all day).
      Ride rating: Advanced
      Singletrack=95% Dirt Road=5%
      LFB a 32 year old Weekend Warrior riding a GT DHi/ GT XCR LE from Fullerton


    • Trail UpdateMount Wilson Trail-Started at the bottom on Saturday morning and did the eternal climb up the toll road. There was much trail traffic but once I reached Henninger Flats I hardly saw anybody for the remaining 6.5 miles. Almost at the top I encountered a group of DHer's fully clad in body armor with thousand pound rigs. Damn those bikes are cool! I felt rather wimpish sitting there in lycra with a single crown fork! Anyway they zoomed down a singletrack and I started to wonder if I was ill-equipped for what was to come. I continued to the top and entered Skyline Park. By the way I'm following the directions from the book, Mountain Bike Southern California which calls this ride one of the most challenging in the book and after experiencing the singletrack I wholeheartedly believe them! Found the beginning of the Sturtevant Trail and began the descent. The switchbacks at the beginning are extremely tight and loose. After much dismounting and portaging I finally decided to take the advice in the book and lowered my saddle. Ahh, what a revelation! Suddenly I felt invincible (really I was just lucky) as I began cleaning some of the switchbacks and zooming down rocky drop-offs. As long as your ass is way back and you don't slam on your front brake in the middle of the drop-off you should be fine. Of course, full suspension helps too. Made it down in one piece to Hoagee's Camp and the singletrack feast keeps on going! Finally made it back to the road but I still had 11 miles to go to get back to the car. Fortunately,
      it was mostly downhill.
      Ride rating: Advanced
      Ride distance: miles 29 Elevation change: alot
      Singletrack=40% Dirt Road=40% Paved Path=20%
      Drew a 31 year old Cross-Country Rider riding a GT i-drive from Los Angeles


    • Trail UpdateDude --

      What you say?

      Ride rating: Intermediate
      Ride distance: 20 miles Elevation change: 6000
      chirs a 32 year old riding a superlight from french


    • Trail UpdateMt. Wilson Trail-
      Hey Chris from French (shouldn't that be France).
      A few corrections 4 U...
      From the bridge of Eaton Canyon in Altadena, it is 9 miles to Wilson, but not 6000 feet, try more like 4300 feet and what shade, accept around mile 3.5 to 5.5 miles, it's all exposed in the sun.
      The Trail the guy told you to come down is Mt. Lowe Railway and then Sam Merrill ST, yes they are very loose, sandy and helluvah exposed.

      JoeTruth riding a Ellsworth Truth from Altadena


    • Trail UpdateMt Wilson Good Up-

      9.1 miles 6000 total verticle. No middle chain ring for me this time.

      Steep climb, beautiful view of Pasadena. A lot of shadded areas along the up. I think we did in less than 2 hours and we not push it all. Me do it in 1.30 I am sure.

      From the top we found Mt Wilson single track that cross fire road we took go up about 800 verticle feet below. We talk to Vietnamese dude about single track. He offer guide us on some killer single tracks. Had to go back to top (1 mile from top). Then keep going on road 2 miles, then up again on fireroad. Then down started. 1st fire road ultra loose (small rocks, not what we used to). Very prety up there. Look like Carizzo a little bit. Very rocky, not many tree. then single track down all the way. Not my kind single track. Same loose shit on 2 feet wide off camber trail with a cliff on side.

      I hate trails with cliffs on the side. Especialy these cliffs, way more gnarly than san juan. I always fall off cliff with clipless. Not bike just poor rider. Anyway, I make it alive, not take any risks. No techno drops, only a few hairy switchbacks, that I tripoded for obvious safety reason.

      That's it. You guys I sure enjoy this trail a lot more than me.

      Ride rating: Intermediate
      Ride distance: 20 miles Elevation change: 6000 verticle
      Singletrack=50% Dirt Road=50%
      chirs a 32 year old Racer riding a superlight from french


    • Trail UpdateMount Wilson-This trail is for those special riders who love to
      punish themselves on scorching hot days. The ominous
      ascent up Mt. Wilson Toll road is a grinder with no
      shade and no relief. The stunning views, however, may
      distract you from your inevitable discomfort. At 7.6
      miles you come to a well marked junction. This is the
      beginning of Mt. Wilson trail head. It's killer single
      track and all downhill. Be careful of the many angry
      rattle snakes! I encountered one rattling reptile
      protecting it's territory in the middle of a
      switchback. My first and only reaction was to dismount
      away from the snake and off the face of the trail. I
      tumbled violently and shreded my skin, but, avoided a
      potentially fatal bite. Bring bug spray, poison ivy
      deterent, and a snake bite kit. This trail may sound
      intimidating but the downhill makes it all worth
      it.... very fast, very technical,
      Ride rating: Advanced
      Ride distance: 13.5miles of dirt Elevation change:
      Singletrack=45% Dirt Road=55%
      HighRider a 27 year old Cross-Country Rider riding a Schwinn Homegrown elite from LA


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