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Bonita Peak, Azusa
SURVIVAL OF THE FITTEST. This isn't an insanely-tough trail, but anything with more than 36 ft. of gain within 36 hours post our Thanksgiving feasts may be a bit of a challenge. We’ll honor Mr. Darwin’s “On the Origin of the Species” (published nearly 160 years ago on this day), by seeing how many of us are evolved enough to make it back on this out-and-back single-track that gains 2,000+ ft. in a little more than 3 miles. Hiker Girl Cecelia first led us on this bonita trail a few years ago. After a half-mile trek down a fire road, we climb up a single-track for about 1.3 miles to a saddle w/beautiful eastern views. When the trail splits, we turn L and continue climbing N past a switchback. We’ll soon see the peaks of Mt. Baldy, Rattlesnake, Iron Mountain and later, Mt. Baden Powell. We’ll detour to bag Bonita Peak, then return to a slightly higher (4,020 ft.), unnamed, flat peak, where we’ll stop for our break and to take in a gorgeous, 360-degree panorama. Then the most evolved of us return the way we came. Anyone who insists on double-digit mileage after driving so far to a trailhead, contact Shawn for more info/intel on two great, fairly flat add-on trails nearby: Shoemaker Canyon (aka “The Road to Nowhere”): a fire road with 5 miles/750 ft. gain and Cattle Canyon: a rocky path with multiple stream crossings of 6.4 miles/750 ft. gain. Both are out-and-backs. We're grateful for this group. . . Happy Thanksgiving, all! STATS Level: Moderate Gain: 2,000 ft. Distance: 6.2 miles Time: 4-4.5 hours Type: Fire road (from parking to/from trailhead), then completely single track. Out and back, mostly exposed Dogs: Permitted on leash (but note several steep/soft sections + Spanish bayonets) Water: Not available at TH Restrooms: Flush toilets at the San Gabriel Canyon Gateway Center Ranger Station at 1960 N. San Gabriel Canyon Road (just N of Ranch Road). Vault toilets in parking lot and at TH. Lines for these are long so stop at any of the vault toilets on the way along East Fork Road. Parking: Lot and road-side. Nat’l Forest Adventure Pass required ($5/day or $30/annual). Purchase at REI, Big 5, the SGC Ranger Station. Shawn has 1 extra. Bring: ~ 2-3 liters of water, hat, sunscreen, poles may be helpful for the descent, slippery in sections. Long pants and long-sleeve shirts for a few sections of Spanish Bayonets. Lite snacks to share w/your fellow Fittest of the Species pals; selected T’giving leftovers graciously accepted. DIRECTIONS From the 210 in Azusa, take Azusa Ave. (Hwy 39) N for 11.6 miles (staying on the road where it bears to the left, 1.6 miles north of the freeway and becomes San Gabriel Canyon Road). Continue to the junction of East Fork Road (8.6 miles from the forest station at the mouth of the canyon). Turn R, cross the bridge and continue driving on East Fork Road 5.1 miles, veering right to the junction of Glendora Mtn Rd. Make a sharp left turn at that junction, cross a white bridge along the way and continue for 1.4 mi. to the East Fork parking lot. If the lot is full, turn around and drive toward the white bridge to look for parking along the road, watching for No Parking signs. Display your NFS Pass and walk back to the yellow gate in the East Fork parking lot, just before the fire road. Here’s a map to the trailhead. If you want to carpool or can drive, leave a comment on the site and meet at 6:45 am sharp in the free parking lot across the street from Max’s Restaurant at 635 N. Azusa Ave, Azusa, 91702. Lot is near the SE corner of Azusa and Foothill Blvd., and close to the Gold Line station. Map to the parking lot on Azusa Ave.: Shawn’s mobile: 213/[masked] (No reception at the trailhead) ***************************************************** The Organizers in this group are not professional guides. Each person who signs up for a trip/meetup/ or outing is responsible for his or her own safety and the safety of his or her guests.

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    What we're about

    We're a group that likes to get together on Saturday mornings for a great hike. It's an excellent way to get outdoors, see amazing views of LA, meet new people, and help us stay in shape.

    We try to mix it up, and try new hikes around the LA area. We're always welcome to suggestions on new hikes from our members!

    We want to emphasize that we are not trained professionals - just a group of friends who like to get together to hike, so remember that you are always participating at your own risk!

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