Josephine Peak Road

Angeles National Forest, California 93093

Elevation Gain2,819ft
Trailhead Elevation3,649ft
Elevation Min/Max3649/5522ft
Elevation Start/End3649/3649ft

Josephine Peak Road

Josephine Peak Road is a hiking, biking, and horse trail in Los Angeles County, California. It is within Angeles National Forest and San Gabriel Mountains National Monument. It is 3.9 miles long and begins at 3,649 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is 8.0 miles with a total elevation gain of 2,819 feet. Near the trailhead there is parking. The trail ends near Josephine Peak (elevation 5,538 feet). This trail connects with the following: Natures Canteen Trail and Strawberry Spur Trail.

Josephine Peak Road Professional Reviews and Guides

"A relatively mild fire road ascent of one of the most prominent peaks in the Front Range, the hike to Josephine Peak is a great introduction to moderate trails in the San Gabriels and has some exemplary views. Look out over nearby peaks and downtown Los Angeles (on clear days) for a comprehensive view of the size of the Station Fire burn area."

"This secluded out-and-back hike follows an abandoned dirt road on a gradual ascent to a summit of 5,560 feet. It may not be as challenging or interesting as other hikes in the area, but your reward is a 360-degree view of the San Gabriel mountain range and the unbeatable feeling that you’re on top of the world.

It’s nearly impossible to get lost on this straightforward out-and-back trail that starts at the intersection of the Angeles Crest and Angeles Forest Highways. There are no confusing trail splits, nor are there any obvious stopping points or especially challenging stretches as there are on many other San Gabriel hikes. The road to Josephine Peak is essentially a steady climb on a wide dirt road flanked by gorgeous views of the mountains unblocked by transmission towers and other signs of urban life."

"At 5,646 feet, Josephine Peak is not the highest in the San Gabriel Mountains, but along with Mount Wilson, it may be the most accessible by bicycle. The route is quite simple—strictly an out- and- back excursion.

The turnaround point is the summit of Josephine Peak, although the actual summit is 130 feet higher than where the trail goes. There is no designated parking near the trail. The Clear Creek Ranger Station has parking only for official vehicles; the adjacent visitor center restricts stays to 15 minutes."

"Circling around dramatic Strawberry Peak on a narrow, cling mountain trail, the views are never less than jaw-dropping; the singletrack never less than thrilling. Surrounded by stately Jeffrey Pines, you'll drop into the lush oasis of Strawberry Potrero for a bit before ascending toward a shoulder between Strawberry Peak and Mt. Lawler. From here, the ride speeds up to the Red Box parking area, then shifts into high speed down the Gabrielino Trail into Switzer's Camp. It's only when you get to your car that you'll realize you've just ridden more than 14 miles of pure singletrack."

"The tough 4-mile climb to Josephine Peak offers spectacular 360-degree views. The downhill return is fast and fun, while the singletrack loop around Strawberry Peak provides plenty of technical challenge. Either peak can be done as a descrete ride. Those without the necessary singletrack skills can simply climb and descend Josephine, while those who don't want to make the full climb can turn off onto the Strawberry singletrack. Please note that the 9-mile trail around Strawberry is very narrow, technical, and exposed in places. It is not a trail for the inexperienced or the faint of heart. Once you're on it, there aren't any bail-out points. Also note that the only water available is at Red Box-late in the loop."

Josephine Peak Road Reviews

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This trail has it all. A tough climb up, incredible views, technical rock gardens, fast downhills. The heat is a little much in the summer and if you aren't in good shape I wouldn't recommend it. We did the entire 21mi with the Josephine Peak Summit and used 5 bottles between 2 people. Be cautious on the back single track, it gets tricky. All in all, one of the best rides ever. I highly recommend it if you can handle the big climb and technical downs.

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Trail Information

Angeles National Forest
Nearby City
Angeles National Forest
Angeles National Forest/San Gabriel Mountains National Monument, Los Angeles River Ranger District
Local Contacts
USGS Condor Peak
Local Maps

Activity Feed

Jul 2018