Conditioning Hike Needed....
In short, I needed some mileage and I was pressed for time. Where to go? Mt. Wilson is more or less in Pasadena's backyard, so with a mileage right around 14 for the standard route, I figured I would try something new and ascend via Bailey Canyon, tag Jones Peak, hopefully Mt. Harvard, and finally up to Wilson.
Did I mention I had to be home by 3pm?
This was the first in a series of training hikes I have planned up for the summer, with hopes of tackling the Presidential Traverse in New Hampshire's White Mountains in August (in a day, not backpacking). With that in mind, I tried to keep my pace up as I was worming my way around Mt. Wilson.
Basically, the highlight of the trip comes after gaining the summit of Jones Peak. You follow a use trail, which is not marked on any map I had, and follow the ridge between Jones Peak and the Mt. Wilson Toll Road. Lots of ups and downs on the ridge, with the final push to the toll road being a little steeper than your average trail.
After gaining the Toll Road, the rest of your hike is pretty basic as far as hiking on-trail goes. I had wanted to bag Harvard as well, but there is now a gate that blocks off the summit where the radio towers are located, so that was a "no-go."
Overall, it was just what I was looking for. Here are some of the stats:
8:20am - Left Mt. Wilson Trailhead on Mira Monte
9:45am - summit Jones Peak
10:35am - Gain the Mt. Wilson Toll Road
11:40am - Summit Wilson
12:25pm - Winter Creek Trail Junction
1:38pm - First Water
2:10pm - Back at my car on Mira Monte
Total Time 5hrs 50min
Total Mileage - 15.2
My GPS came back with an astronomical figure of over 8000 feet elevation gain, but I find that to be simply impossible. When I first started I had it recording tracking points every 15 seconds, but then I switched it over to every 5 seconds. I find the closer in time proximity I have the GPS, the elevation gain profile becomes more inflated. That said, the hike started just under 1000 feet and topped out at 5700 feet, so there's a minimum of 4700 feet not including all the ups and downs. I would guess maybe around 6000 feet elevation gain, given all the bumps on the ridge.
GPS Track of the Mt. Wilson Hike via Jones Peak and Ridge
GPS Track of Mt. Wilson hike via Jones Peak
Ridge beyond Jones Peak
Jones Peak Ridge - The final section
Backside of the final bump
The final push to the Mt. Wilson Toll Road
From the summit of Mt. Wilson
Santa Anita Canyon
Flowers below first water
No comments posted yet.