Midsummer, the 26th of July, 2012, three hikers, myself included, decided to summit Iron Mountain. We all had a day off and we thought a day hike to Big Iron was a splendid way to enjoy a typical Southern California Summer day. And for the most part, it was... we had a great time :) One thing though, it was HOT! It wasn't too bad at the summit, but as we descended, we felt the heat emanating from the exposed ridge. This, along with the steepness of the use trail, affected our speed, making us slower than normal. A slower pace meant that we would spend more time out in the heat than anticipated. We noticed our collective water level was running low, so water rationing was a must. My four liters of water and liter of Gatorade were not enough. We used what little shade we found to our advantage... they made perfect rest stops, sparing us from the sun's rays. Anyways, we safely made it back without over exerting ourselves. Once at the East Fork of the San Gabriel River, I couldn't resist dunking my head in the water. And an ice cold ice tea from a fast food restaurant never tasted so good. It's several months later, so let's do it again!
Iron Mountain is arguably the most difficult day hike in the San Gabriel Mountains. This is an advanced hike (elevation gain of ≈7,200 feet and around 15 miles roundtrip). Our pace will be moderate, but we can adjust to the group's collective abilities. We'll meet at 5:45 am in front of the gate near the parking lot at the end of Camp Bonita Road (this is the same parking lot for a "Bridge to Nowhere" hike). You'll need an Adventure Pass to park alongside Camp Bonita Rd. or in the parking lot. We'll actually begin hiking at 6 am. If you need directions or if you are wondering about what to take, please email. Note: I've also posted this hike with another meetup (AU).
Make sure you are hydrated! This means before and during the hike. I'm taking 6 liters total (4 liters of water and 2 liters of Gatorade). I plan to stash one liter of partially frozen water at Heaton Saddle and later retrieve it as we head back. In my car, I'm taking an ice chest with extra water and maybe a diet coke. I recommend chilling your water the night before because it quickly heats up. Don't forget to bring food/snacks chock–full of electrolytes. Wear pants because there is brush and pointy yucca plants alongside the trail. Bring sunglasses, sun block and a hat. Trekking poles are optional, but they could help with steep, loose, unstable sections.
Waiver of Liability: This group, its organizer, assistant organizers, will not be held responsible for any injuries or accidents that may occur during group hikes/backpacking outings. If you sign up and come on this hike/outing you are acknowledging that you freely and voluntarily assume all risks of injuries and damages and agree to participate in the hike/outing.