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This is Early Bird Hiking's weekly Monday evening outing led by Tim. It is a happy mixture of fun, food, friends and a fine trail. We realize that the 5 p.m. start time isn't good for many of you, but the problem is that the gate three miles below Chantry Flat is locked at 8 p.m., so we need to be back to the parking lot by about 7:30. We set a moderate pace, which will get us back in time and still allow us a good mid-way break at Hoegee Campground.
Hoegee Loop is a beautiful, lush, fairly easy loop hike from Chantry Flat in the San Gabriel Mountains above Arcadia. The trail features a gentle flowing stream with numerous easy rock-hop crossings, historical cabins and campgrounds, and a high-on-the-ridge final descent with sweeping views of nearby peaks and the LA valley below.
This is a low-intermediate hike of 5 miles and about 1,100 feet of elevation gain. From the parking lot, we'll head down a paved road for about a half mile, then turn left and go up Lower Winter Creek trail to Hoegee Campground, where we'll stop for a break amid the pines. Many people bring simple snacks to share -- fruit, cheese, cookies, that sort of thing. Then we'll continue upstream a short distance to catch Upper Winter Creek trail and take it back down to the parking lot.
Chantry Flat parking requires an adventure pass (http://www.fs.usda.gov/detailfull/r5/passes-permits/recreation/?cid=stelprdb5181410&width=full). It's $5 for the day or $30 for the year, good at all LA-area National Forest sites. Passes can be purchased at many sporting goods stores, or online (http://www.fs.usda.gov/detailfull/r5/passes-permits/recreation/?cid=stelprdb5181410&width=full) IN ADVANCE (and then mailed to you). Passes will be available at Chantry Flat, but please allow an extra 10-15 minutes if you plan to purchase one there.
To reach Chantry: From the 210, take the Santa Anita exit and go north 5 miles. Initially you'll be traveling through a neighborhood, but after about 1.5 miles, Santa Anita becomes a winding mountain road that ends at the parking lot. Allow about 15 minutes for drive time from the 210 to the lot. Be on time -- we'll hit the trail at 5:01 SHARP.
Please note: Because today is Labor Day, the usually-empty parking lot will be much busier than usual. In fact, the place will be packed earlier in the day, but by 4:30 or so, most people will be leaving and you should be able to find a good space. If the lots are full when you arrive, overflow parking is along the road leading in. An Adventure Pass is still needed, and be sure to observe a few marked no-parking stretches.
WE LEAVE RIGHT ON TIME, SO IF YOU ARRIVE AT THE LAST MINUTE AND HAVE TO HUNT FOR PARKING, YOU WILL MISS US.
Friendly, socialized dogs are very welcome on this hike. Officially they must be on leash, and certainly that's true at the beginning and end, near the ranger station. Tim's dog (Magic) loves this hike and will undoubtedly lead our group all the way.
Liability: The Organizer, Assistant Organizers and event hosts in this group are not professional guides. The function of the organizer is only to organize the trip. 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. By signing up for a hike, or any other event organized by this group, 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, Assistant Organizers and event hosts of this Meetup Group from and against any and all liability arising from your and your guest's participation in the group activities.