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Needles Lookout Trail

 1 vote

2.1 Miles 3.4 Kilometers

 

85% 

Runnable

Singletrack

591' 180 m

Ascent

-289' -88 m

Descent

8,103' 2,470 m

High

7,765' 2,367 m

Low

8%

Avg Grade (5°)

41%

Max Grade (22°)

Unknown

Update

A steep climb with great views along the way and especially at the top.

Mario Zamora

Overview

Normal snowfall will make the trip not passable or extremely dangerous.
Features: Views

Description

Starting from the trailhead, you have a couple of mountains to navigate up and down with the final climb up the switchbacks to the lookout. The trail is typically 4-5 feet wide, but narrows to just a couple feet in many places. Snow, which lasted until at least May in 2016, can make the trail difficult to pass in several areas where the trail is a single path and the drop is quite steep. In the summer months, snow will not be an issue. You may have to jump over a few downed trees measuring 2-3 feet in diameter.

Just before your ascent up the last peak, there is a small campground where you can take a breather, as well as an area up the peak, but before the steps where you can circle up. The final climb is all singletrack up the switchbacks to the lookout steps and is rocky.

The lookout is no longer there, but the steps up to where it used to be are still there and safe. Once at the top, you can see Dome Rock (which you can get to via a less intense trail which you can access along the same highway) to the south.

Depending on the time of year that you visit a gate may block your entrance to the upper parking area. If the gate is closed, you'll need to park lower, adding mileage to your outing. Additionally, the trail may have parts where snow remains through the spring and it can be difficult to pass. You may also run into several spots with down trees. Expect a longer outing under those conditions as you'll often have to navigate your own trails.

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#12371

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Rankings

#1,597

in California

#12,371

Overall
18 Views Last Month
575 Since May 20, 2016
Intermediate Intermediate

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