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Mt. San Antonio, affectionately known by locals as "Mt. Baldy", at 10,064 feet above sea level, is the tallest mountain in the Angeles National Forest. The above photo is a view of Baldy from the San Gabriel Riverbed near El Encanto Park in the city of Duarte, CA.
Completing this hike really gives you a sense of accomplishment because to make it, you have to overcome the effects of altitude and sometimes the weather. Therefore, anyone planning to hike Baldy should be in moderately good shape and be properly prepared. Technically, it is not a difficult hike (ie, no rope climbing) but mentally, it is a challenge if you are not used to hiking at altitudes above 8,000 ft.
The best time of the year to do this hike, depending on the amount of snow on the mountain, is from late May/Early June to late November/ early December.
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There are multiple trails to the top of Mt. Baldy. The most common and the one this Website describes, is to take the ski lift (open on weekends, 8 AM
to 5 PM) up to Baldy Notch Ski Lodge and then take the westerly trail over the Devil's Backbone,
across the southern side of Mt. Harwood, to the summit. This trail is about 3 miles from the lodge to the summit with a net elevation gain of 2,264 feet.
It takes about 3 1/2 hrs to reach the top and 1 1/2 to 2 hours to get back down (yes, altitude and gravity DO make a difference!).
The Topo © generated map below shows this trail. For a printable version of this map, click here. For A Google © Map and driving directions to the Mt. Baldy Ski Lift parking lot, click here.
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Run your cursor slowly along the blue trail line and when prompted, left-click for photo and its description.
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