Past Meetup

Echo Mountain

This Meetup is past

14 people went


Organizer: Joe Richards

Location: Altadena, CA

Hike Difficulty: Level 6/10, intermediate

A beginner hike: No

Distance: 5.2 miles approximately

Elevation Gain: 1,400 ft elev gain approximately

Time: 3 hours

Trail condition: Switchbacks on well-maintained trail

Water: Minimum 3 liters

Liability Waiver: Required. This is the link. (

Guest: 1

Dog: YES (on leash)

Toilette: no


Please Contribute

Our events are free to participate, but not free to organize. If you have enjoyed them and want to see more, please contribute to our cause so that we can organize more fun and adventurous outings.

Suggested Event Contribution: $ 5 (Chip in link)


What to Bring: Hat, hiking poles, gloves, sunscreen, energy bar, snacks, and water. Please refer to US Hiking Day Hike Equipment List. (


To get to the trailhead: From the 210 Freeway in Pasadena, take exit 26 and head north on Lake Ave. Drive 3.6 miles to the end of the road and find street parking. The trailhead is on the right, just before the road turns sharply to the left and becomes East Loma Alta Drive.

Parking: Street parking near the trail head. Please be aware of the "No Parking" or limited-hour parking signs.

Starting in front of the Cobb Estate Gate at the north end of Lake Avenue, we'll take on the trail that is a well-maintained but steep trail.

The trail ascends at a steady aggressive grade of switchbacks, about 2.5 miles of them, but never gets too steep over the 1,400-foot climb. Views over Pasadena expand as you maneuver up the side of Las Flores Canyon.

"(ca. 1895)* - Visitors outside of the Echo Mountain House (left), a 70-room hotel at an elevation of approximately 3500 ft. Passengers on the Great Cable Incline segment of the Mount Lowe Railway are arriving on the right. Other buildings on Echo Mountain included the 40-room Echo Chalet, an observatory, car barns, dormitories, repair facilities, and a casino/dance hall. A kitchen fire destroyed the Echo Mountain House in 1900."

Pasadena and Altadena citizens long have been proud to share their fascination with the front range of the San Gabriel Mountains. This pride has extended to the trails ascending from these municipalities into the mountains.

It was the local citizens, under the auspices of the Forest Conservation Club, who built a trail from the outskirts of Altadena to Echo Mountain during the 1930's. During the next decade, retired Los Angeles Superior Court clerk Samuel Merrill overhauled and maintained the path. When Merrill died in 1948, the trail was named for him.

The Echo Phone

We can walk northwest across the clearing to a strange looking relic. In an era before cell phones and walkie-talkies, the Echo Phone could be used to shout messages across the mountain. A series of these metal megaphones were used to communicate back and forth to the resort. Step up and give the Echo Phone a try. The booming messenger still resonates across the canyon.

The remains of an old rail car.


Our Policy:

Profile photo: Anyone interested in joining US Hiking must have a profile photo showing his/her face. This is a requirement of our group. Without it, you will not be allowed to sign up for an event.

Waiting list priority: People who hike with with US Hiking regularly will be given priority when they are on the waiting list.

Advanced hikes: Anyone interested in participating in advanced hikes (>3,000' elevation gain or distance > 10 miles or Difficulty Level > = 7) will be subject to prescreening before his/her name will be added to the list. Therefore, interested hiker must share with the event host his/her recent hiking background to establish proficiency before his/her name will be added to the list. Guests are not allowed on advanced hikes.

Early departure: If a hiker needs to be separated from the group for any reason, he/she must inform the event host. Not knowing a hiker's whereabouts may prompt the event host to report a hiker's missing to proper authority for further actions.

No show: If you sign up for an event but do not show up, you will be removed from the next event you sign up.

No minor: Meetup user agreement cannot be agreed to by a minor. Therefore, you and your guest must be over 18 to participate in our events.



If you have prior medical condition or a family history of illnesses pertaining to heart, lungs, brain, etc. that can be aggravated by heat and physical exertion, this is not the hike for you.

If you have never done a hike of this distance or difficulty before, this hike will be very difficult for you. It may well be your death march. The mountain is not going anywhere. We will schedule this event again in the future. Do it when your mind and body are ready.

Hiking is a recreation, not a suicide mission.

Release of Liability:

The organizer (me) of this trip is a volunteer and is not a professional guide. The function of the organizer is only to organize this trip. Each person who signs up for a trip/hike/or outing is responsible for his or her own safety and the safety of his or her guests.

By signing up for this trip, or any other event organized by me, you are acknowledging that you are aware and have made your guests aware of the risks, dangers, and hazards associated with any outdoor activity and freely accept and fully assume all such risks, dangers and hazards, and further agree to release and discharge the organizer (me) of this hike from and against any and all liabilities arising from your and your guest's participation in the group activities.

US Hiking, its organizer, assistant organizers, event organizers are not responsible for any injuries or accidents that may occur carpooling to and from this event, or for any injuries or accidents incurred before, during, and after this event. If you sign up or participate in an event, you acknowledge that you freely and voluntarily agree to assume all risks of injuries and damages arising from, as a result of and associated with this event.

In addition, you and your guests are acknowledging that you agree to the Meetup terms of service especially paragraph 6.2: