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El Prieto to Brown Mountain Loop

 4.1 (7)

8.2 Miles 13.2 Kilometers


89%

Runnable

1,254' 382 m

Ascent

-1,254' -382 m

Descent

6%

Avg Grade (3°)

17%

Max Grade (10°)

2,385' 727 m

High

1,152' 351 m

Low

Shared By Justin Jasper

Conditions


All Clear 93 days ago
Dry, Mostly Dry, Some Mud History

Getting forecast...

A challenging wooded climb, great views, and a fast descent.

Justin Jasper

Dogs Leashed

Features Fall Colors · River/Creek · Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife

Overview

The best moderate loop in the Pasadena/Altadena front range of the San Gabriels. Although the El Prieto climb is a bit challenging, it's wooded, crosses multiple streams, and is pretty. The descent on Brown Mountain Road and Fern Truck Trail isn't too steep, has nice views, and can be done pretty fast.

Need to Know

Rocky, rooty, and a challenging uphill.

Runner Notes

This loop has a challenging ascent. Watch out for mountain bikers descending the El Prieto Trail. It is generally easy to let them pass, and they are always friendly, because it's a great trail.

Description

From the parking lot near the JPL entrance, follow the paved trail that turns to a dirt road for about 1.25 miles. Take the right fork towards El Prieto/Brown Mountain for about 0.25 miles, then stay right onto El Prieto.

Follow this steep trail for about 2 miles until you reach Brown Mountain Fire Road. Turn left here and climb up to the saddle between Brown Mountain Fire Road and Fern Truck Trail. Descend down Fern Truck Trail (also called Brown Mountain; the left-most trail when you reach the saddle) back to the junction where you took El Prieto, and head back the way to came to the parking lot.

You can also do the loop in reverse, but running down El Prieto is a little less desirable. You can also add an out-and-back from the Brown Mountain Saddle towards Ken Burton Trail if you are looking for a longer run. El Prieto has a few off-shoots, but they'll all reach Brown Mountain eventually.

Flora & Fauna

Might see some coyotes, deer, and rabbits.

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Your Check-Ins

Check-Ins

Jan 3, 2018
Kyle Feig
Beautiful hike. Was scared to death a biker was going to hit me but going up the trial to the right and coming down on the left seemed to prevent that 6.8mi
Jun 15, 2017
Andrew Velasquez
Apr 2, 2017
Jose Hernandez
Pasadena Trail Race Series 10Mi 10mi — 1h 41m
May 14, 2016
Andy Kiehl
poison oak over trail on prieta — 1h 11m

Trail Ratings

  4.1 from 7 votes

#1

in Pasadena

#2059

Overall
  4.1 from 7 votes
5 Star
43%
4 Star
29%
3 Star
29%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%
Rankings

#1

in Pasadena

#313

in California

#2,059

Overall
220 Views Last Month
2,453 Since Nov 4, 2015
Intermediate Intermediate

0%
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71%
29%
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