Bridge to Nowhere Hike

 

Hike Organizer: Paul Kemp
Location: Azusa, CA 
Hike Difficulty: Moderate to difficult, 6/10
Distance: 9 1/2 miles round trip
Elevation Gain: 1,000 feet
Time: 5-6 hours

The scenery along this trail is monumental, on a scale seen nowhere else in the San Gabriel Mountains. The gorge of the East Fork cuts deep into the eastern high country, separating such giants of the range as Mount Baden-Powell and Old Baldy. This is nature in it's grandest portions, at least in Southern California! 

The trail follows along the banks of the East Fork of the San Gabriel River, fording its shallow but rushing waters several times along the way. We will pass under Swan Rock, a towering wall west of the river with the outline of a giant swan etched in grey, before reaching the famous "Bridge to Nowhere," the most imposing remnant of the East Fork Road of yesteryear. The mysterious bridge was built in 1936 but the road leading to it was swept away by flooding in 1938.

The hot weather is here so its time for the perfect summer hike. The hike itself is moderate but be prepared to get wet if necessary as there are several boulder-hopping river crossings along the way. That doesn't mean wearing sandals or flip-flops but a good pair of hiking boots or shoes you don't mind getting wet. Bring at least 2 liters of water, sunblock, and lunch to eat when we reach the bridge. Also, there is bungee jumping off the bridge if you feel so inclined!

DIRECTIONS: From the 210 freeway exit at Azusa Avenue (Highway 39) and head north for 10 miles or so. Azusa Avenue becomes San Gabriel Canyon Road and parallels the San Gabriel Dam on the right. Turn right on East Fork Road and continue for another 8 miles until the road dead ends at the East Fork Ranger Station. Park in the lot or beside the road below the ranger station.

The parking situation at the trailhead is usually very tight so carpooling is recommended. The carpool location is Monrovia Park and Ride, located on the west side of Myrtle Avenue just south of the 210 freeway, at 7.45 a.m.

 

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  • Shine

    Paul, thanks! It's a fun hike and met new hikers too. See you all on next trail. :0) Thanks to all wonderful pictures....

    June 3, 2013

  • Karine

    It was a great hike , too hot for me :0 , Thank u Paul

    June 2, 2013

  • Yesenia

    Great Hike! :)

    June 2, 2013

    • Karine

      Hello Yessie ,it was nice meeting u too , u guys were great , I really appreciate ur concern and help . Hope I will see u soon :)

      June 2, 2013

    • Yesenia

      Likewise Karine :)

      June 2, 2013

  • Irfan P.

    Great hike with very friendly, hilarious and fun loving people.. Everyone had lots to share and the group was together all the time. Paul took good care of all.

    June 2, 2013

  • Ana

    Nice hike, thanks to Paul and Mike!

    June 2, 2013

  • Sonia T.

    Excellent. Too hot but wonderful

    1 · June 1, 2013

  • Karine

    It was a good hike , Thank you Mike , u were great .

    2 · June 1, 2013

  • sudha

    Was a really great hike. Little hot but great still.

    June 1, 2013

  • Rem

    ...wuz here!

    June 1, 2013

  • Cita B

    Sorry, Going back, spilled a huge 36 oz drink in my console, not a single napkin to use. Please do this hike again. Have fun y'all!

    June 1, 2013

  • sudha

    hi paul, the carpool location you have provided in monrovia park, are there any spots left? and if there are, is there an exact address?

    May 31, 2013

    • Paul

      Sudha, I'm not sure how many people will be there so just show up there.

      May 31, 2013

    • sudha

      thanks paul, I will see you at monrovia park at 7:45am. I dont have your number or anything but I will be in a blue honda civic. thanks

      June 1, 2013

  • Jesus M.

    Forgive the last minute cancelation. I'm not feeling well this morning.

    June 1, 2013

  • Simran

    Anyone looking to carpool from Santa Monica/ West LA, please let me know. Thanks.

    May 30, 2013

    • AgapeSoul S.

      I have room for two if anyone wants to meet me at Starbucks on Santa Monica and bundy at 7:30. Email me at nancygly@ gmail.com to confirm.

      May 31, 2013

    • Pat

      sorry have an emergency at work cant make it. :(

      June 1, 2013

  • Emi

    Are dogs are allowed on this?

    May 31, 2013

    • Paul

      Emi, you can bring your pooch as long as its friendly, likes water, and doesn't start humping people's legs!

      May 31, 2013

  • Irfan P.

    i am coming from Fontana and have an adventure pass. If anyone interested they can carpool with me or i can come pick from Monrovia Park and Ride

    May 31, 2013

    • Elarian

      Hi Irfan. I'd like a ride to the trail head. I am planning on going to the park & ride.

      May 31, 2013

    • Irfan P.

      I will be driving metallic grey Honda pilot touring.. See u @ park n ride

      May 31, 2013

  • Irfan P.

    i can seat 7 more..

    May 31, 2013

  • Brent

    I'm in the Studio City area if anyone wants to carpool.

    May 30, 2013

    • Rem

      Hey Brent, I'm in the valley and a carpool would be great. I'd gladly contribute $ to your gas fund, or an adventure pass if needed. Let me know, Thanks!

      May 31, 2013

    • Brent

      Unfortunately, I am not going to be able to go on the hike - my apologies.

      May 31, 2013

  • Melanie

    Can I carpool with anyone from Azusa?
    Cuz don't have parking pass....

    May 31, 2013

  • Jesus M.

    This sounds like a lot of fun! Count me in! :D

    May 30, 2013

  • AgapeSoul S.

    I'm driving from West LA if anyone would like to join for carpool.

    May 30, 2013

    • AgapeSoul S.

      Greg, I usually take the 60 - parallel to the 10 - I often find traffic is lighter for me. ... We'll see. Will touch base tomorrow.

      May 30, 2013

    • Simran

      Hi there. I live in Santa Monica as well. Let me know if you want to carpool for this. Thanks.

      May 30, 2013

  • David J.

    Driving from Thousand oaks if anyone wants to carpool.

    May 30, 2013

    • Paul

      David, you may want to stop at the Monrovia carpool location and pick some people up there.

      May 30, 2013

    • Jay

      HH is coming from Canoga Park. I'll let him know.

      May 30, 2013

  • Jay

    Just a mention, it's a good idea to buy a pass (only $5) as they can be used 'any day' (like a scratcher card you scratch the day you're hiking) So if you don't use it (ergo: carpool from Monrovia) you can use it another day.

    May 30, 2013

  • richard m.

    Can I just assume a carpool spot or do I need to make prior arrangement

    May 29, 2013

    • Paul

      Richard, just show up at the Monrovia carpool location and we will arrange carpools there.

      May 30, 2013

  • Melanie

    Do you have to buy the day pass for parking?

    May 29, 2013

    • Paul

      An Adventure Pass is required for parking but the ticket is only $5 if you get one because you don't have a Pass.

      May 30, 2013

  • Roland P.

    Hey Paul,

    Not having been there before, is the parking situation near the trail "generally" so tight that finding a spot is tough? I'm aware that we can get an Adventure Pass at REI but need your opinion if it's worth the risk trying for a spot near the trail.

    I'd appreciate it.

    May 29, 2013

    • Paul

      Randy, there is a parking lot but its usually full so parking is on the driveway leading up to the lot.

      May 30, 2013

  • AgapeSoul S.

    Paul, do we need an Adventure Pass to park?

    May 30, 2013

    • Paul

      Yes, you will need an Adventure Pass to park although the ticket is only $5 if you don't have one.

      1 · May 30, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Decided to do this with earlier in the day with the 7:30am group instead. See you on the trail. My spot vacant ... now!

    May 30, 2013

  • Jay

    I'm leaving from Hollywood. Anyone need a carpool? I can carry 3. If not, I would prefer to lv car at Prk-n-ride and carpool w/someone. Cheers!

    May 30, 2013

  • Greg

    can't wait, it's gonna be fun

    May 29, 2013

  • Greg

    anyone from Monterey Park area wants to carpool?

    May 29, 2013

  • Marie A.

    Is this the same hike that was scheduled on Mother's Day? Is there an age limit on this? I have two teens who have started hiking with me..we are beginners...they are 12 an 15. This would be my first outing with your group so I need to learn the ropes. =) Is there a fee involved and if yes what are the details? Thanks!

    May 28, 2013

    • Paul

      Marie, There is no age limit on this hike and it really depends on the fitness level of you and your teens. The hike is not a strenuous hike, around 10 miles with only gentle elevation gain of 1000 feet. Read the write-up for what you need to bring and wear for the hike. An Adventure Pass is needed to park in the parking lot near the trailhead, the cost is $5.

      May 28, 2013

  • Karine

    Where in Monrovia park we meet for carpooling ? Never been there don't know if the park has few parking spots !

    1 · May 28, 2013

    • Paul

      Karine, Monrovia Park and Ride is fairly small but there is never a shortage of parking spaces. Just look for a collection of people who look as though they are ready to go on a hike, towards the north end of the lot.

      May 28, 2013

    • Karine

      Thank you

      May 28, 2013

  • Rem

    I'll be at the carpool. IRT the bungee jumping, how much $?

    May 27, 2013

    • Paul

      Rem, the bungee jumping costs around $80.

      May 27, 2013

  • juliet

    Is this hike not recommended for non-swimmers? How deep/shallow is the water?

    May 27, 2013

    • Thom

      I did this hike a month ago and the water was only ankle deep. I doubt it will be any higher than than now. That said, I am no expert.

      1 · May 27, 2013

    • Paul

      Juliet, there will be deeper water where you can go for a dip under the bridge where we will be stopping for lunch.

      May 27, 2013

  • Karate K.

    I'll patiently wait for a day that I don't have to work when you continue to set up more future events to this hike. *sighs*

    May 27, 2013

  • sudha

    This hike has been on my list for long time.

    May 27, 2013

  • Hex C.

    Let's get wet

    May 27, 2013

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