Mount Emma 5273ft. and Old Mount Emma 5063ft. form the last northwest reach of the San Gabriel Mountains into the western Mojave. The peaks are very barren with a sparse covering of juniper, pinyon, and cactus. The peaks have been burnt within recent years and can be climbed from many directions. They are both on the Hundred Peaks List of the Sierra Club. Mount Emma the highest of the two peaks has a prominence value of P753. The Emma Mountains are basically Mojave climate peaks. There is no water on the route and no shade. In the summer this would be a very hot hike so bring lots of water and sun protection.
From the 210 Freeway in La Canada take Angeles Crest Highway SR-2 north 9.5 miles to the junction with Angeles Forest Highway. Turn north onto Angeles Forest Highway and take it for 20 miles to Mount Emma Road. Turn right onto Mount Emma Road and go 2.0 miles to where the road goes over a shallow saddle. Park at this saddle.
Route to Mount Emma 5273 feet:
From the parking area hike southeast up a use trail that connects with a firebreak at 4300 ft. Take the firebreak all the way to the summit of Mount Emma.
Roundtrip is 2 miles with a 1000 feet of gain.
Route from Mount Emma to Old Mount Emma 5063 feet:
From the summit of Mount Emma, go northeast along the main Emma ridge to the summit of Old Mount Emma. First you will descend to a sub-peak in the middle of the ridge then ascend to the top of Old Mount Emma 5063ft.
Roundtrip for this segment is 1.75 miles and 500 feet of gain.
Total roundtrip for this combination of routes, using the first route as a return, is 5.5 miles with 2000 feet of gain.
You will need a Adventure Pass
for parking at the turnout.
For camping information and current conditions in Angeles National Forest
. Here are three of the nearest campgrounds, all of which would be great staging places for peakbagging in the western San Gabriels:
1. Lightning Point Campground, on Mount Gleason
2. Monte Cristo Campground, off of Angeles Forest Highway but south of Mill Creek Summit
3. Mount Pacifico Campground, located on the summit of Pacifico
Both Emmas are on the Hundred Peaks List