Echo Mt. to Inspiration Point to Mt. Lowe (5,604') 13 miles/4,000 elevation

Lake Ave. to Echo Mountain then to Mt. Lowe via Castle Cyn. and return via Sam Merrill Trail. It will be warm on Sunday 60's-70's. The first part of hike to Echo Mt. may be exposed to sun, the peaks may be cooler and windy, and the return route will be shaded.

This hike starts with the very busy Lower Sam Merrill trail to Echo Mountain (2.6 miles) then takes the very quiet Castle Canyon trail (2.0 miles) to Inspiration point before heading up to the Mount Lowe summit at 5600 ft via the Mt. Lowe East Trail (1.5 miles). This hike ascends almost the whole way. On the way out this takes the Upper Sam Merrill/Mt Lowe East trail (1.4 miles) to the old Mount Lowe Camp and finally back down via the Middle Sam Merrill/Sunset trail (2.7 miles) and back down the Lower Sam Merrill trail (2.6).

Bring 2-3 quarts of water, snacks, lunch for summit. boots, hiking poles if you use them and your ten essentials. We will go slow to moderate with stops to catch our breath. This hike will be for conditioning and adventure. This mountain has a lot of history.

Getting to the Trailhead:

From the I-210 Foothill Freeway in Pasadena, exit at Lake Avenue. Drive north for 3.4 miles to the end of Lake Avenue (where it intersects with the terminus of Loma Alta Drive running east and west). Park along the street. The hike begins to the right of the stone gateway on the east side of the street.

Distance: 13 miles approx.

Elevation Gain: 4,000 ft approx.
Hike Time: 7 hours approx.
Difficulty: Strenuous
Trail Condition: OK, but a few difficult spots
HikeType: Loop

Fascinating historic railway, great views, pine trees, deep canyons

Topo Map:



***Notice: I am only suggesting this hike. Join me if you like the outdoors. I am not a guide nor responsible for your safety. Hike at your own risk.

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  • brian k

    Few people on the trail, warm temperture and lots of color.

    June 4, 2012

  • Mylene

    Poodle Dog Bush in full bloom beyond Inspiration to Lowe. Everywhere a sight to see
    Easy to avoid touching. A least for me. Fragrant yellow bushes all around. The landscape was the most colorful I've seen yet. It was worth it to go a slower pace. Warm day. We completed the hike 10 minutes shy of projected time of 7 hours. Hike leader easygoing.

    June 4, 2012

  • brian k

    Slow but steady. We are a smaller group so we will stay together.

    June 2, 2012

  • Perry A

    Brain, thanks for the link. I really enjoyed the historical photos.

    June 2, 2012

  • Kimberly :.

    Ohh you wrote slow speed. Cool.

    June 2, 2012

  • Brian A

    Think I'll go with the grilled barracuda. Or maybe a whole chicken.

    June 2, 2012

  • Kimberly :.

    Good prices!

    June 2, 2012

  • brian k

    Here is the Mt. Lowe Alpine Tavern lunch menu if you get hungry :)

    June 1, 2012

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