ElevationAscent: 4,763' 1,452 m
Descent: -4,762' -1,452 m
High: 5,677' 1,730 m
Low: 1,043' 318 m
GradeAvg Grade: 13% (7°)
Max Grade: 47% (25°)
Current trail conditions
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“Looking for a hill to conquer in the Los Angeles area? Look no further!”— Swire Ho
The trail is challenging, and the first part can be very hot during the summer. This trail is not recommended for beginners.
The first mile of the trail is on a sandy singletrack with little shade. It passes a fork to First Water (stay left) and contours around the side of the mountain, and in 2 miles enters an oak and bay shaded section of trail. At 3.5 miles are the remains of Orchard Camp next to a seasonal stream. This shady spot is a good place to take a rest.
The trail then climbs a series of switchbacks through forest then open chaparral finally reaching Manzanita Ridge at 4.8 miles. There is a nice bench with a good view and a junction with the Winter Creek Trail #11W20 on the right. Stay left and continue up the trail to a junction with the Mt. Wilson Toll Road #2N45 at 5.5 miles. Turn right and continue up the road for half a mile enjoying the fine views of the high mountains to the east. At the Mt. Harvard Saddle, turn right onto the Mt. Wilson Summit Spur Trail which leads to the a parking lot. Cross the lot and go up the trail to the pavilion where there are picnic tables and restrooms.
Cosmic Cafe offers food and refreshments. Hours vary by season. There are also tours offered of the Mt. Wilson Observatory grounds. Water may or may not be available, so bring plenty.
Return down the same way you came. This is when the fun begins!
Land Manager: USFS - Angeles National Forest Office