We met Rick Graham (graham) at Manker Flats at 4:30am and left our vehicles there. Rick then shuttle us to Heaton Flats. There, Rick, Richard Piotrowski and trailhuggersarah were aiming for Iron Mountain while awagher, MikeSash and I continued on to Baldy. We started hiking at 5:35am from Heaton Flats. Reached the summit of Iron Mountain at 10:01am. Rested for twenty minutes and then began the San Antonio ridgeline traverse towards Baldy. We pretty much got hammered with 50+ mph winds (gusts up tp 60+ mph) the rest of the day. Several times we lost balance as the wind would knock you off. At times, we even had to lie down. We made slow progress because of the very high winds. You couldn't breathe if the wind would hit you right in the face. Summited Baldy at 4:08pm (finally there is a summit register up there...it took me like 5 minutes trying to get the pen to write and not getting blownoff the mountain). Back to Manker Flats at 6:33pm (~ 13 hrs). Oh yeah, Andrew and I had only 4 hrs of sleep Saturday night and 5 hrs Friday night (climbed at Echo Cliffs Saturday). It didn't help. The Moral: get a decent rest the night before in order to enjoy this day hike.
Route Climbed: Heaton Trail
Date Climbed: October 23, 2004
Believe what you read on most of everyone's summit posts: this is one tough day hike mostly because you end up going up & down the several ridge bumps along the way. Hiked with mdostby and agorokhov. We started a few minutes after 8:00am. Took a decent 40 minute rest break at the 4,582-foot Heaton Saddle and then continued on. I reached the summit at 2:03pm. Stayed up at the summit for an hour. Great close up view of West Baldy's and Baldy's west /northwest face(s). Hiked the last forty-five minutes by headlamp reaching the car around 7:30pm. I don't think I'll be hiking Iron Mountain again anytime soon....Ugh...
Awesome! Loved the 'roller coaster' ride. Will go back soon to do Iron/Baldy traverse with less wind. If Andrew got blown over, than I would've been a human kite. :)
That wind was CRAZY! All of us got blown over at least once (Miguel, Mike and I). Congrats on the summit.
Climbed with Miguel Forjan and Mike Sash from the Heaton Flat trailhead. Clear cool day with winds that were predicted at 40mph. Yeah, f'n right...on the ridge to West Baldy I was knocked over and I believe I saw Mike get blown over too. The worst was yet to come. After summiting Baldy I began my descent down the Devils Backbone when I was blown down by the wind. I layed down and hugged the bigges rock near me when the wind began to push my body along the ground. I would say the wind was gusting at closer to 70 - 80 mph here. I waited for the gale to subside and made a dash for the relative shelter of the bowl. The wind was not as bad here so I plunged down to the ski hut and hit the trail by headlamp arriving at the car at Manker Flat 12 1/2 hours after we left Heaton Flat. The route was truely the only fine simi-technical route in the San Gabriels that I could image out there. All in all a good day.
Hiked with Ryan (crescentstrife) below on a perfect day. Prefer the uphill to the nasty stretches of downhill on this one.
My third hike to Iron this year and my 5th ascent overall. Today, it was summer hiking in December. It was plain hot! Fell against flesh-tearing flora big time twice on the way down.
Needed more than 4 liters of water. 40 minutes of the return was in the dark but with a full moon behind us.
Second hike to Iron this year. Route was snow-covered past Allison Saddle. Absolutely beautiful. Four of us did the round trip in just under 8 hours.
Great hike, a fair bit of snow at the summit. Tough climb. Climbed with ODC.
OMG! Thought I was gonna die of heat exhaustion. That was one nasty bugger on a 100d day. The blooming yuccas were fantastic. Almost stepped on a baby rattler and saw some horny toads. Walked directly from trail's end into the San Gabriel River.
Great hike (12.5 hours total) save for the heat, smog, missing the correct ridge on Iron, and running out of water. The San Gabriel river bath was an outstanding culimination to a tough day. Pictures
Early start still didn't beat the heat. Encountered a rattlesnake in the trailside Manzanita. View from the summit incredible. Consumed a gallon of water to the summit leaving a quart for the descent and ran dry at the saddle. On a warm afternoon and the 5 bumps to go it made for uncomfortable final push. As others have suggested, storing water at the saddle is the smart thing to do on a warm day.
A few of us in our group were returning to do the summit after being turned back the previous Saturday due to heavy snow and whiteout conditions above Allison Saddle. Today, the weather was perfect. Snow capped Mt. Baldy gave us great scenery all the way up. Our group of 7 made it to the top in 4 hrs. 45 minutes. There was still snow on the summit from last week's storm. Our return was 3 hours. This hike/climb is always a good workout.
Left Manker Flat at 5:10 am. Summitted Baldy via the Ski Hut Trail. Delayed on summit for 1 and 1/2 hrs. due to injury to one of our party. Then to West Baldy and the beginning of the traverse of the San Antonio Ridge. Lots of up and down, scree, sharp Buckthorn and yucca along the route. Saw plane wreckage. Most fun was a section of 3d class rock as you approach Iron. Summitted Iron at 1:30 pm. Stayed about an hour and then embarked on the steep descent from Iron. Finished our outing at the Heaton Flat Trailhead at 6:30 pm.
Hiked up from Heaton Flat in under 3.5 hours. Then did the traverse over to Baldy and back returning to Heaton Flat. 14 hrs 40 mins.
The four bumps route didn't look so bad on the trail to the saddle before you really start to climb. I was wrong. I was doubting I would make it as I started the third bump but kept telling myself if I didn't today, then I'd have to come back and do it over again and at the time I didn't want that. Roughly 8 hrs. round trip with many short breaks on the way up. It will be a long time before I go at it again.
Tony, Peter, Mike and I started at Heaton Flat TH at 5am, hiked up to Iron Mt (9:30), then across the San Antonio ridge to Baldy (3:40) and then down to Manker Flats (5:30). Hiked on cool & very windy day. Iron-Baldy hike/scramble is one of the hardest hikes I've done in SoCal. The San Antonio ridgeline involves some class 3 downclimbing. Took us ~12.5 hrs for the ~18 mi with ~10K gain
They call this "Big Iron" for a reason. The trip took 12 hours round trip, but that includes a 1/2 hour break at Allison Saddle and 1 hour on the summit. We started at 4:00am and hiked the first two hours by headlamp. I was pleasantly surprised by the condition of the trail, both before and after the saddle. Some saint has trimmed all the pointy plants that surely would have pricked us at every turn. Confusing forks in the trail are carefully ducked. I took 1.5 gallons of water and stashed part of it at the saddle for the return trip. I used a little over half of the water. We were glad the day was a little overcast. The view from the top was excellent and was worth every step!
East Fork to Iron Mountain to Baldy is one of the best hikes Ive done. Great exposure (but always safe) and very straitforward. Started at 6am and was at Manker Flats by 2pm. A must do!!
Hiked with friends Mike and Alex.