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Bridge to Nowhere - East Fork Trail #8W13

Intermediate/Difficult
 4.5 (75) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

A great out-and-back to a large solitary bridge.


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Map Key

9.8

Miles

15.8

KM

96%

Runnable

2,792' 851 m

High

2,016' 614 m

Low

814' 248 m

Up

814' 248 m

Down

3%

Avg Grade (2°)

18%

Max Grade (10°)

Dogs Leashed

Features River/Creek · Swimming · Views · Wildflowers

Trailhead parking requires an Adventure Pass and a self-issued Wilderness Permit needs to be obtained from the trailhead.

Overview

This trip takes you along the banks of the East Fork of the San Gabriel River. While the river banks are wooded and quite lovely, most of the trail traverses the rim above the high water line as runners travel through low scrub brush. The highlight of the run is a mysterious bridge built over the East Fork in 1936, which has no road leading to it. Actually, in the 1930's a road did lead to it, but it was swept away by floods in 1938.

Most of the road is gone now, but the bridge still stands, and is full of bungee jumpers on the weekends. A short trail down from the bridge leads to some top-notch swimming holes, making this a perfect run on a hot, summer day.

Description

Route finding is a bit challenging with many day-use trails mixed in with the main trail, washed out sections of trail, and over a half dozen stream crossings (bring waterproof shoes even when the water is low). I was also astounded at the number of swimming holes. This place must be a zoo in the heat of the summer!

The trail along the East Fork of the San Gabriel River to the Bridge to Nowhere is not only one of the best trails in Southern California, but it's also one of the most unique running experiences you'll ever have.

After you leave the crowded (and overused) trailhead area, you'll increasingly find yourself awed by the rugged canyons deep in the Sheep Mountain Wilderness. Multiple river crossings and shaded glens await you on this trek, with the final destination a 130-foot concrete span bridge leftover from an attempt to build a road north through the canyon.

There are some small trails that lead down to the stream just after you cross the bridge. This is a stunning setting with sheer pink tinted granite walls, roaring cascades, and the lovely bridge in the background.

Flora & Fauna

Wildflowers, cacti.
Lots of lizards, huge grasshoppers, chipmunks, Nelson bighorn sheep!

Contacts

Shared By:

Sameera Kommidi

Trail Ratings

  4.5 from 75 votes

#1

in East Fork

#59

Overall
  4.5 from 75 votes
5 Star
60%
4 Star
32%
3 Star
5%
2 Star
3%
1 Star
0%
Recommended Route Rankings

#1

in East Fork

#4

in California

#59

Overall
161 Views Last Month
22,453 Since Oct 14, 2016
Intermediate/Difficult

2%
0%
61%
5%
32%
0%

Photos

Trail sign
Apr 9, 2021 near Mount B…, CA
Area map sign
Apr 9, 2021 near Mount B…, CA
Bridge to Nowhere, Angeles National Forest
Jul 30, 2016 near Wrightwood, CA
09•21•2019
Oct 6, 2019 near Mount B…, CA
The John Seales Bridge, the bridge to the Bridge to Nowhere, renewed in 2009.
May 14, 2018 near La Verne, CA
Bridge to nowhere.
Jun 17, 2019 near Wrightwood, CA

Weather


Current Trail Conditions

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All Clear 9 days ago See History
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Check-Ins

May 22, 2020
Jay Salazar
3h 00m
Sep 11, 2018
Catherine M