Page Type Page Type: Mountain/Rock
Location Lat/Lon: 33.32436°N / 118.3688°W
Additional Information County: Los Angeles
Activities Activities: Hiking
Seasons Season: Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter
Additional Information Elevation: 1634 ft / 498 m
Sign the Climber's Log


Santa Catalina Island

Lone Tree Point is a mountain peak on the island of Santa Catalina, California. Santa Catalina Island is situated 22 miles southwest of Los Angeles and is part of the Channel Islands of the California archipelago. It is a rocky island composed of two distinct rock units: Catalina Schist from the Cretaceous and Volcanic and intrusive igneous rocks from the Tertiary period. Various unique species of plants grow on the island, such as Catalina Manzanita, Catalina mahogany, St. Catherine’s lace, and many more. There are also a variety of unique animals inhabiting it, such as Island Foxes, Ornate Shrews, Bald and Golden Eagles, and Bisons. Sea Otters, Seals, Giant Sea Bass, Leopard Sharks, Bat Rays, Horn Sharks, and many more fish species lurk beneath the surface of the surrounding waters. Famous shipwrecks such as the Diosa del Mar and Su-Jac rest at the bottom of the ocean near the coast as well.
Lone Tree Point

There are two main cities on the island: Two Harbors, which is located at the northwestern tip, and Avalon which occupies the southeastern part. Lone Tree Point can be found south of Avalon. In fact, the peak connects to the Palisades, a series of steep rocky cliffs dropping more than 1,500 feet down into the water, which occupy one of the southernmost portions of the island. From the summit, views of the Palisades and the ocean are present to the south; East Peak and East Mountain can be found to the east; Silver and Grand Canyons are north; and rolling hills occupy the western view. The area is often engulfed in a thick, fast moving fog. It is therefore advised to climb it between morning and afternoon for optimal results.

In May 2007, wildfires blazed through certain areas on the island and Lone Tree Point was unfortunately affected by the catastrophe. It is nonetheless still a beautiful peak with breath taking views, especially in clear weather.

Getting To The Island

There are two available methods of transportation to reach the island: by helicopter or by fairy.

Helicopter rides are available in San Pedro:

Island Express Helicopter Service offers a 15 minute helicopter ride for $86 one-way or $164 round-trip plus tax per person, admitting up to 6 passengers at a time.
Directions: Harbor Freeway (110) south to the "Terminal Island-Long Beach" exit. Cross Harbor Blvd. and follow signs to parking. If you're coming from Long Beach you can take Ocean Blvd. west, cross over the Vincent Thomas bridge, and take the Harbor Blvd. exit.

Fairy rides are available at four different locations:

San Pedro: Catalina Express is located in the Catalina Air Sea Terminal Building, directly beneath the Vincent Thomas bridge. Find out the Schedules & Fares.
Directions: Harbor Freeway (110) south to the "Terminal Island-Long Beach" exit. Cross Harbor Blvd. and follow signs to parking. If you're coming from Long Beach you can take Ocean Blvd. west, cross over the Vincent Thomas bridge, and take the Harbor Blvd. exit.

Marina Del Rey: Catalina-Marina Del Rey Flyer's Schedules & Fares.
Directions: From 405 Fwy, take CA-90 WEST toward Marina Del Rey. Turn LEFT onto Lincoln Blvd. Turn RIGHT onto Fiji Way. Ferry departs from the El Torito Dock directly in front of the restaurant.

Newport Beach: Catalina Passenger Service The boat leaves from the Balboa Pavillion, a Southern California landmark.
Directions: From San Diego: Take the Santa Ana (5) Freeway north, to the San Diego (405) Freeway north, to the Newport (55) Freeway south. The 55 ends and becomes Newport Blvd, which ends and becomes Balboa Blvd. Follow until Balboa Pavillion. Turn left on Main St. for the terminal or turn right on Palm Street for long term parking (7 dollars a day).
From LA: take the San Diego (405) Freeway south to the Newport (55) Freeway south, then see above.
From Riverside/San Bernandino: take the Artesia (91) Freeway west to the Newport (55) Freeway south and follow above.

Dana Point: Catalina Express' Schedules & Fares.
Directions: From Los Angeles - Take I-5 Freeway South & exit at Pacific Coast Highway.
From San Diego - Take I-5 Freeway North & exit at Beach Cities, Highway #1 off the ramp.
Take a left at the signal, (Dana Point Harbor Drive) then left at Golden Lantern, which dead ends at Dana Harbor parking lot.

From Avalon to Lone Tree Point

From Avalon city, walk south towards the Hermit Gulch Campground while following Avalon Canyon Road, which can be found approximately in the middle of the city. The campground can be easily found as various signs indicate where it is located. It is approximately 2 miles from the beach.
Lone Tree Point

Lone Tree Point

From Hermit Gulch, walk past the campsites and turn right once the dirt trail reveals itself next to the bathroom facility. Follow the trail into the canyon for a few feet until it begins climbing up the mountains. The trail will be surrounded by trees and dense vegetation for a while until it meets a ridge. At this point, a beautiful view of Avalon city and the ocean can be admired. Continue climbing up all the way to an intersection, where a small tree can be seen standing inside a concrete circle along with a plaque on a rock containing a nice quote from Captain Eddie Harrison.

From there, head north for about 500 feet until a road heading southwest opens up to the left. Follow that dirt road until Lone Tree Point is reached. The trail ends at the edge of the Palisades and overlooks the ocean below.

The entire hike from Avalon is approximately 5.5 miles long (11 miles roundtrip), which should roughly take 3 hours to complete (6 hours roundtrip). The trail has an elevation gain of roughly 1,500 feet, climbing up to the 1,634 feet high summit.

A nice alternative way back to Hermit Gulch can be achieved in roughly an extra half mile by taking the trail heading south from the tree in the concrete circle previously mentioned. This trail will offer a different scenery and ends at the Wrigley Memorial & Botanical Garden. The garden features the Wrigley Memorial: an old chapel-like building with very peculiar architecture. The Garden contains endemic plants from the island and offers a perfect way to end the trek.

Red Tape

Mandatory hiking permits are free and available at the campground office.

More info available here.


The Santa Catalina Island Company has campgrounds at Two Harbors, Parson's Landing, Black Jack, Little Harbor, and Hermit Gulch inland from Avalon. All campgrounds require a reservation and permit. There are also nine primitive boat-in only campgrounds.

More info available here.


Avalon Airport Weather Forecast
Santa Catalina Island Weather Forecast
Santa Catalina Island Weather & Marine Forecast

External Links

Santa Catalina Island Information

Visit Catalina Island

Catalina Conservancy Map

WikiPedia: Santa Catalina Island, California

Additions and CorrectionsPost an Addition or Correction

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Bob Burd

Bob Burd - Feb 3, 2016 5:28 pm - Voted 10/10

"Ferry", not "Fairy"

Fairy rides require pixie dust. Found in several places in the text.

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