San Antonio Falls - Sierra Club Ski Hut - Devil's Backbone
ElevationAscent: 3,810' 1,161 m
Descent: -3,813' -1,162 m
High: 9,991' 3,045 m
Low: 6,178' 1,883 m
GradeAvg Grade: 13% (8°)
Max Grade: 72% (36°)
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“A fun but strenuous run around some key features in the area.”— John McKinney
Return to the road and continue on; at almost one mile, there is a junction with Baldy Bowl Trail #7W02 which heads north. Take a left to follow Baldy Bowl Trail #7W02 as it ascends steeply along the edge of the San Antonio Canyon. The trail is steep but at least it is shaded by white fir, oaks and Jeffery pine trees. The right turn for the Sierra Club ski hut is two miles from the junction with Baldy Road #3N01. There is a spring near the hut.
Return to Baldy Bowl Trail #7W02 and continue to climb up steep switchbacks to a shady ridge that overlooks the headwaters of the San Antonio Canyon. The trail continues to be quite rugged, but on a clear day the views from the summit of Mount San Antonio (aka Mt. Baldy), reached four miles into the run, are fantastic. The Devil's Backbone, Mt. Harwood, the San Gabriel and San Bernardino mountain ranges, and the Mojave Desert are all visible.
Runners of course can return the way they came, but a somewhat easier (though longer) way down is to follow the Devil's Backbone Trail off the summit. The grade this direction is much gentler, especially as you get further from the peaks. At mile six, Turkey Shoot trail splits off to the right; continue on the Devil's Backbone Trail until you reach Mt. Baldy Notch and the junction with Baldy Road #3N01 at 7.1 miles. Head down the easy grade of the fire road enjoying the views as you descend back to the parking lot or take the ski lift from the notch.
Thanks to John McKinney, The Trailmaster, for sharing this trail description. To learn more about trails in California, check out his guides at The Trailmaster Store.
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Land Manager: USFS - Angeles National Forest Office