SCHEDULE FOR September 2015
September 5, 2015 — Weldon to East Canyon/ Mission Peak
Local and so popular .…..with distance choices!
This is a 6 mile or a 9 mile hike, depending upon the option you select — either one gets you ~ 1500’ gain! However, most of that gain is in the first hour of the hike and we will take that part a little easier.
This hike, although it is in SCV, will whisk you away to rolling green hills, views and quiet oak woodlands of the 480-acre Michael D. Antonovich Open Space. The area straddles the ridgeline of the Santa Susana Mountains and features mixed woodlands of big cone Douglas-fir, big leaf maple, coast live oak, California black walnut, native ash, and valley oak. Chances are high we will meet no one else for most of the way.
Shorter Hike route — Approx. 6 miles with ~1500′ gain: Weldon Canyon and down East Canyon
Longer Hike route — Approx. 9 miles with ~1600′ + gain: Weldon Canyon, Mission Peak Roundtrip and then down East Canyon
We start by going steeply up Weldon Canyon, then along a beautiful tree lined service road to reach the top of East Canyon. Here we will bid farewell to any hikers doing the shorter 6 mile hike, as they go directly down East Cyn, enjoying American walnut trees, views of the entire SCV and Rice Canyon below.
The rest of us will continue up East Canyon to where it meets the top of O’Melveny Canyon. We hike across the top, along grasslands and an oak lined lane, over to Mission Peak, which may be windy. We will have a lunch/ snack stop here and then return to the top of East Canyon and from there a nice downhill hike back to our vehicles via East Canyon.
Meet your leader: At the base of East Canyon at 7:30AM for a 7:40AM SHARP departure. Park on the Old Road, see detailed directions below.
(VERY Short) Carpool: We will leave most of the cars at the East Canyon location, and carpool in a few cars a very short distance to the Weldon Canyon Trail head (22945 Coltrane Avenue, Newhall), it is just up the Old Road. People who opt for the shorter 6 mile hike should plan to leave their cars at East Canyon. Note: At the end of the hike, a few of us will act as Carpoolers, taking the people who kindly drove you the short distance to Weldon Canyon, back to their cars. (THANK YOU in advance for your assistance).
Directions to East Canyon meeting spot: Exit the I-5 freeway at Calgrove. Turn west. Follow Calgrove around a curve and through one signal. You will now be on The Old Road. Pass Towsley Cyn; Pass the Post Office; Pass the Church of the Nazarene but immediately after passing the Church of the Nazarene, park along the side of the road, on the right. This is where we will meet.
Bring: Lots of water, snack/lunch, hiking poles if you have them and a camera if you have one. Good shoes with tread are a must have and bring an extra layer to avoid a chill if you are going to Mission Peak (you will be cooling off and it can be windy up there).
Rated: Moderate/ Moderate+, depending on whether you choose the longer hike. Most of the 1500′ gain is in the first hour of the hike up Weldon Canyon.
Adventure Pass: Not required
Dogs: Ok, if on a leash and well-behaved with other dogs / people.
Leader: Steve I
September 12, 2015 — Chantry Flat/ Sturtevant Falls, looping back to Adam’s Mule Packing station.
Hike Length: 8.4 Miles with 700 feet elevation gain.
Rating: Easy++ to Moderate
The trail starts at Chantry Flat on a paved road, then becomes a single track trail past Roberts’ camp and then to Sturdevant Falls. After a rest we will hike back to Roberts’ camp and follow another hiking road back to Chantry Flat to complete a loop. The hike is well shaded and usually has water flowing year round. There is lots of greenery and rustic charm.
PARKING NOTE: this trailhead is very popular, parking can be difficult. By far the most difficult thing with this hike is figuring out where to park. The lot opens at 6AM and is usually full by 7AM. For this reason, we have to leave SCV early and we recommend carpooling. On weekends, parking can be backed up a half mile down the road. If you are not able to park in the main lot for free or the paying lot above it, you will have to park along the approach road. In that case, you will need an Adventure Pass on display, if you want to avoid a ticket.
Directions to Trailhead: From the 210 Fwy in Arcadia heading East, take the Santa Anita Ave. exit. Turn left (North) on to Santa Anita Ave and drive 6 miles until the road deadends at Chantry Flat.
Carpool: Meet at the Towsley Canyon front parking lot at 6:15AM. Carpool arrangements will be made at that time and we leave at 6:30AM SHARP. Please be respectful of your driver’s support by contributing something at the end of your carpool to help defray the cost of gas.
Meet your Leader at the Trailhead: The group will meet at the lower trailhead, as you enter the parking lot (where the Restrooms are). WE plan to leave at 07:30AM.
Adventure Pass: Required if you park outside the parking lot (which may end up being the case). You can buy an Annual pass at Sports Chalet.
Bring: A snack/lunch, water (3 liters is recommended), electrolytes if it is a hot day, sunscreen, hat, hiking poles if you have them, and your camera. Wear layered clothing and good boots with tread.
Bring some money if you want to enjoy a cold beer, a hot dog, or homemade chili at Adams Pack Station (above, established 1936) at the end of the hike. If we are lucky they will have their famous pulled pork sandwich.
Leader: Steve I
Saturday, September 19, 2015 — You Pick: Mentryville and Pico Canyon
An EASY 4 miler; or Continue up to the Peak above Pico Canyon, for a MODERATE 8 miler
Rating/ Distance (Round Trip)/ Gain: Easy — 4 miles total, out and back / 200ft Gain
Description: The first 2 miles of the hike starts in the town of Mentryville, followed by a gradual climb on a paved road (with no traffic), until we reach Oil Well #4 at the back of the canyon. The well was owned by California Star Oil, later to become Standard Oil of California.
Along the way, CHC Board Member and President, SCV Historical Society (Dr. Alan Pollack), will share his knowledge of Mentryville and the early oil industry in Santa Clarita Valley. Alan will conclude the historical portion of the hike at the end of the 2 mile canyon. Anyone who does not to wish to continue up to the Peak with Steve can return to the parking lot with Alan at this point to clock a nice Easy 4 miles!
Rating/ Distance (Round Trip)/ Gain: Moderate — 8 miles total, out and back / 1200ft Gain
Description: After Well #4 at the back of the canyon, Steve will start to climb the service road for another 2 miles and add another 1000 ft. getting to the peak. At the top there is a table where we can have lunch/snack, and relax for a bit. The views are some of the best in Santa Clarita Valley from this point! On our return, we will take a slight detour down a different, more challenging, but shorter trail back. We pass some very interesting rock formations to arrive back in Pico canyon in Johnson Park/ We pass a mock– up of an oil well, an old bar, and a dancing / recreation area used by the oil workers in the 1930’s. From there, we walk back down the canyon returning to our vehicles.
Meet: Be at the parking area in Mentryville at 7:15 AM, for a 7:30 SHARP departure up the trail. The hike will start as more of a walk.
Bring: Lots of water, snacks, and a camera, a hat and sunscreen. If going all the way to the top you need boots with plenty of thread — the return hike is down a narrow steep trail. Poles are helpful for the longer hike, if you have them. BRING CHANGE FOR SELF-SERVE PARKING!
Directions/ Parking: From Los Angeles or Santa Clarita, take Lyons Avenue WEST over the 5 Highway and keep going, it will become Pico Canyon. Continue on Pico until it ends in the town of Mentryville. Go over the bridge and park close to the big pepper tree by the rest room, where Steve will meet you. You must pay a $5 MRCA parking fee to park here. However, if you wish to avoid this fee, you can park outside Mentryville for free (back at a “Y” / turnout you pass about 3/4 mile up the road). Then you walk in (for extra hiking credit!). If doing this, allow an additional 20 — 30 minutes for the walk in.
Historian: Alan Pollack // Hike Leader: Steve I
September 26 — Historical Hike along the Sam Merrill trail to Echo Mountain / Mt Lowe Railway (Altadena Area)
Distance: 5.9 miles approx. total, out and back. Gain: 1000′
Description: One of the greatest historical hikes in the Angeles National Forest.
The hike route used to be the right of way for the Lowe Mountain Railway. We will go up the trail to the ruins of an old hotel that burned down in 1936 on the top of Mt Lowe.
Alan Pollack from the Santa Clarita Historical Society will explain the history of the area, especially the ruins of the hotel and the remains of the railroad that served it (it was the greatest incline railroad in the world at one time). We will check out an old megaphone that points up to Inspiration point. Yell into it and hear your echo being repeated over and over again. That is why it is called Echo Mountain. There are also remnants of a reservoir, tennis courts and an observatory nearby to check out.
Transport: (Parking can be a problem at the trail head on weekends)
Option 1: Meet at Towsley Canyon parking area in front of the green gate at 7:00AM to arrange carpools. We will leave at 7:15AM SHARP for Altadena.
Option 2: Meet at the Altadena Trailhead — Cobb Estate Gate at 8:00AM. Directions to trailhead below.
The group will leave the trailhead at 8.15AM SHARP!
(Please be respectful of your driver’s support by contributing something at the end of your carpool to help defray the cost of gas — THX).
Directions to the Trail head: Address — 3302 Lake Avenue, Altadena, CA 91001
Coordinates: 34.203811, –118.130507 (34° 12′ 13.71″N 118° 07′ 49.82″W)
Take 210 East from Santa Clarita. From the 210, take the Lake Avenue exit North over the highway — from Pasadena into Altadena. Continue on Lake Ave. north as it climbs the hill. Parking is at the end of the street, near the sharp left hand turn (E. Loma Alta Dr.), outside the large gates of the Cobb Estate.
Permits: No permits are required, street parking only.
Bring: Water (3 liters is recommended), electrolytes if it is a hot day, sunscreen, hat, lunch/ snacks, hiking poles (which are very helpful on the climb up), and your camera. Wear layered clothing in case it gets hot or cold. Wear good boots with lots of tread on this trail.
Historian: Alan Pollack // Hike Leader: Ola