weather was perfect, started at 6:20 got back at 3:20 for 9 hours of knee pounding awesomeness...I would not want to do this in the summer lol.
Planned to hike Baldy from the village but "Winter Storm alert" was predicted to dump up to 15 in. for the area, riiight. Decided to skip Baldy to be safe and hit Iron Mtn. standard for the first time. We started @ 7:15 with sunrise. It was probably the best time to do this hike. The ground was just moist keeping loose stuff together on the steep parts. Overall tough hike, but very rewarding, and pleasant in the right conditions. Only about 1/2 in. of unpacked snow, just a dusting, on the peak with amazing, clear views: snow capped Mt. Baldy, entire San Gabriels, Catalina Island, and beyond. Back to the car by 4. Here's the gps: http://connect.garmin.com/activity/408726846
I had forgotten really how tough this hike is. A very warm day. Was hoping to complete the traverse over to Baldy but it didn't happen. Great company on the hike up with Tina F.
This was a lot of fun. The river and valley near the trailhead gorgeous. Had to convince two tiny fawns to get off a narrow stretch of trail near Allison Saddle so I could get through. The trail up the ridge was very well defined, and anyway it's a very straightforward ridge climb. Fell on my butt lots and lots of times on the way down. 2 liters of water (plus one drunk immediately beforehand) was plenty in the relatively cool weather.
Headed up Iron on my planned 'break from climbing weekend' (more accurately my break from multi-pitch trad weekend). Intended to do the traverse to Baldy and back but warmer than expected temps and lack of motivation to add another 8-9 hours to the hike turned me around at the Iron summit.
Too cold for climbing so I drug Jascha out for another death march. We ascended through the fog bank to find a pocket of blue skies above the summit. The pine trees were covered with huge ice crystals. We made it back to the car in 7:20 before any nasty weather set in.
Without a doubt the most difficult day hike I have done in the mountains of Southern California. Hiked with friends Miguel, and Alex.
Started at around 7:15am from the East Fork Trailhead and summitted at around 11:30am. Great hike but the toughest part for me was descending ~6,500 feet on steep slopes with loose gravel and yuccas everywhere. Returned at the car at around 4:30pm. Tough but great hike with marvelous views from the top.
First time up. I was surprised, after reading about the "trail-less" south ridge route, to find a well-marked use trail. Sure, it's steep and slippery in places, but I never doubted that I was on the right track. Perfect weather, overcast on the way up, with sun breaking through for the summit views and return. One of my yucca stabs became infected, no fun. Long sleeves would've helped against that. 9 hours 20 minutes round trip included food, photo and fatigue breaks, with an unhurried pace after the first couple of hours (I was pushing to catch my buddies after my 20 minute late start, but relaxed once I realized I'd never bridge that gap).
Always painful, always worth it.