OverviewFox mountain is on the north side of Big Tujunga Canyon, directly across from Mt. Lukens, near the western end of the San Gabriel Mountains. Connected to Condor Peak by a long wide ridge, the two form a large massif. The hike up, from near Vogel Flats, follows a semi-well maintained trail with wide open views of surrounding peaks and the canyon. With the trailhead just 15 minutes from the 210 freeway in Tujunga, this trail is a convenient option for a quick work-out, or a full day of hiking. The name "Fox" comes from Fox Creek, on the northeast side of the peak. The creek appears on USGS maps prior to the benchmark 5033' being designated as "Fox". The year round stream drops steeply through a lush riparian canyon, with deep pools and many waterfalls, inaccessable to all but experienced canyoneers.
Fox is often climbed in conjunction with Condor Peak, either roundtrip or as a 12+ mile loop with the Trail Canyon Trail. For a couple more miles of hiking you can add Iron Mountain to your loop for a three summit day.
From the 210 freeway, exit at Sunland blvd. Go east on Sunland (right turn if driving east on I-210, left if coming west on I-210). Go about a mile on Sunland (which soon joins and becomes Foothill blvd) to Oro Vista avenue (Jack in the Box on corner), turn left, after about a mile Oro Vista enters Big Tujunga canyon, and about another mile later at the intersection with Mt. Gleason avenue it becomes Big Tujunga Canyon Road. From here drive 7.25 miles (about 1/8 mile past the Vogel Flats road) park in the second pull-out on the right. There is a 3' high white road marker (across the street) that reads "4.50", the trail starts right behind that sign. Caution: Do not leave valuables in your car. There has been at least one break-in here.
Condor Peak Trail
This approach starts out of Tujunga canyon and climbs the southeastern side of the mountain. The trail is steep, and climbs what are mostly dry brushy slopes with chaparral and Yuccas. There are a couple of nice stream crossings with ferns and shady trees. The trail passes by Fox Peak, 1 mile before reaching Condor Peak.
From the trailhead, go about 1/2 mile, passing some exposed switchbacks right over the highway, then turn left at the trail juntion, and continue about six miles up to the saddle just north of the peak. From the saddle, go up the use trail on the ridge to the summit (less than 1/2 mile). Go back down the way you came.
It's approximately 12 miles round trip and 3000 feet elevation gain.
Red TapeA National Forest Adventure pass or America the Beautiful pass is required to park your car on National Forest land.
For information check the Adventure Pass website.
No other red tape.
CampingThe closest developed camping is the Monte Cristo Campground.
Located off Angeles Forest Hwy. 9 miles north of the Angeles Crest Hwy. intersection.
Most people do this as a dayhike, though you could backpack in if you wanted. There are plenty of possible campsites. The Tom Lucas trail camp, about 3.8 miles up on the Trail Canyon trail, isn't much, just a couple of tables, and somewhat overgrown.
For more information about camping check the NFS website...Click here
External LinksUSFS website
National Forest information.
Field Guide to
the San Gabriel Mountains
An excellent website packed with information about the San Gabriel Mountains.
Trail Canyon Trail
Some interesting trivia.
ADVENTURE HIKES AND CANYONEERING
IN THE SAN GABRIELS © Christopher Earls Brennen
Excellent site, with lots of info on adventures in the San Gabriels.
Hiking season and weatherFox can be hiked year round. In the summer it gets hot, but you can start very early and be up and down before it gets really hot. It takes about 3 hours to the top at a moderate pace. Winter is the optimum season to hike in this area, due to the low elevation, snow is rare and sunny days are the norm, though stormy days are often the best! This is a great rainy day hike...bring an umbrella,(not a bad idea in the summer as well).
Weather forecast for L.A. county mountains.....
Ticks, Poison Oak and Rattlesnakes
Ticks are out mostly in the moist cooler months, especially in the spring. Avoid brushing against grass and branches along side the trail. Ticks will cling onto your skin and clothing. Check frequently for these slow moving parasites.
Poison Oak is plentiful. There is quite a bit of it in Trail Canyon but on the Condor Peak trail, you'll probably only see it near the stream crossings.
Rattlesnakes are common in the summer, they seem to be most active on warm afternoons, but also watch for them on sunny eastern slopes in the morning. Be careful if you bring your dog. In the winter you won't see them, or on any cold or rainy day.