Mount Baldy Road

Angeles National Forest, California 92358

Elevation Gain389ft
Trailhead Elevation7,706ft
Elevation Min/Max7549/7818ft
Elevation Start/End7706/7703ft

Mount Baldy Road

Mount Baldy Road is a hiking, biking, and horse trail in San Bernardino County, California. It is within Angeles National Forest. It is 0.7 miles long and begins at 7,706 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is 1.3 miles with a total elevation gain of 389 feet. Near the end of the trail is a reservoir. This trail connects with the following: Mullin's Mile, Trail, Bentley's Dream, Baldy Road, Turkey Shoot and Devils Backbone Road.

Mount Baldy Road Professional Reviews and Guides

"Mount Baldy is the preeminent mountain in the Angeles National Forest. Although its real name is Mount San Antonio, no one calls it that; to everyone, it is simply Mount Baldy. Once on top, it should be obvious as to why it has been given this moniker. Though there are no trees on top, the trail itself is lush and filled with vegetation. In fact, there aren’t many trails in the entire forest that are much nicer."

"This leg-busting ascent to the highest point in the San Gabriel Mountains (and Los Angeles County) is an absolute must-do for any serious hiker living in or visiting the region.

This loop route traverses the infamous Devils Backbone and makes a short side trip to neighboring Mount Harwood before descending on the Ski Hut Trail. This route is challenging, rightfully popular, and stunning in every way."

"This trail traverses one of the grandest loops in Southern California. It has everything: pine forest, streams, waterfalls, a Sierra Club ski hut, and a grand view from atop one of the region’s highest mountains. Though it is wildly amazing, Mount Baldy is not for everyone. The ski hut trail is high altitude, steep, extremely rocky, and difficult. The Devils Backbone is incredibly steep and rocky as well, and it is also precipitous. If your dog is not used to alluvial drop-offs and wobbly rock-strewn ground, this is not the place to bring your pet. At the same time, for people who hike continuously, the clear day views are among the best in all of California. Even the not-so-clear days are pretty darned close to magnificent. And, for dogs whose pads are tougher than tank treads, this trail will be nothing but another fun all-day outing in the mountains."

"This is an out-and-back, 9.6-mile round-trip up and down Mount Baldy. The first 3.6 miles occur over a moderately steep ascent of 1,600 feet to the Baldy Notch. A steeper climb of 685 feet over 1.2 miles takes you close to the top of Thunder Mountain.

The first one-half mile is on a one-land paved (but degraded) road. This changes to a hard-packed four-wheel-drive road in good condition with some sections of loose rock. The ride requires a moderate amount of technical riding skills and a good amount of strength. Good view of the surrounding mountains and valleys from the summit of Thunder Mountain."

"Back in the early 1940s, Herb Leffler and Jim Chaffee worked together at the Douglas Aircraft Company in El Segundo where United States planes were being built for duty in the Pacific. During winter a group of friends at the plant, including Leffler and Chaffee, would combine enough C Ration gas coupons to fill the tank of their 1927 Ford Model A so they could go skiing at Blue Ridge, the only SoCal resort not closed because of the war. In 1944, Leffler and Chaffee decided to install their own rope tow and when the U.S. Forest Service offered them several sites, they chose Movie Slope behind Snow Crest Resort at Camp Baldy. Chaffee borrowed one of his father’s Hudson engines, which he housed in a structure made of used Douglas Aircraft engine packing cases, and, using a bale of rope and Leffler’s initial investment of $150, the boys were in business. Their first year they made a $90 profit. The following year Chaffee joined the 10th Mountaineers. Upon his return and over the next seven years, three more rope tows were installed, a small lodge was built near Snow Crest Resort, the ski school was initiated, and a ski patrol formed. Leffler and Chaffee brought a portable rope tow to the Divide, now called the Notch, and in the spring they would take groups of skiers up to the top of the canyon where Chair 1 is now located and run the portable to the top. By 1952, the U.S. Forest Service granted permits to open Thunder Mountain and with the help of investors, Mt. Baldy Tows was formed and construction began. Leffler and Chaffee sold their holdings to the corporation in 1953. An additional change of ownership in 1969 brought lift upgrades, expansion of facilities at the base, mid-mountain, and at the Notch summit, and better grooming equipment. Mt. Baldy’s future development plan received the go-ahead from the U.S. Forest Service in 1997. Once environmental studies are completed and permits granted, the area to the northeast of the Notch and over the ridge from Chair 4 down to Stockton Flats will be incorporated into the resort. Expansion will include more than 300 acres of superb north-facing ski slopes, extending over 2,200 vertical feet above the new base area and served by seven new chairlifts, including a high-speed detachable quad from bottom to top. This eTrail contains a thorough description of the resort including driving directions, mountain statistics, trail profiles, extensive lodging & dining information, travel tips, and much more."

Mount Baldy Road Reviews

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I Love this hike! One of my favorites. It is really steep towards the top and not a lot of escape from the sun, but making it to the top is well worth it.
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At one point the hiking became mountain climbing. Not for people with fear of heights. An awesome view from on top. Met alot of great people. If Mike,Patrick,son Chris, and B.R. see this contact us we would like to hook up on future endeavors!!
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Glorious weather and views. Great practice for Mt. Whitney due to elevation and steep terrain.
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Awesome hike! Beautiful views! However, this trail is not for the faint of heart. Parts of the trail have drop offs on both sides, which was too much for some of our party.

Trail Information

Angeles National Forest
Nearby City
Angeles National Forest
Skill Level
Skiing, Sledding, Snowboarding
Additional Use
Angeles National Forest/San Gabriel Mountains National Monument, San Gabriel River Ranger District
Local Contacts
USGS Mount San Antonio, Telegraph Peak
Local Maps