Mt. Baden Powell is a 9,407ft peak that can be accessed via an 8 mile roundtrip hike along the Pacific Crest Trail. The mountain is named after Robert Baden-Powell, the founder of the World Scouting Movement (Boy Scouts). Mt Baden Powell is one of the largest peaks in the San Gabriel Range, and is the highest peak outside of the Mt. San Antonio massif.
Directions And GPS Tracks:
- To hike Mt. Baden Powell via Vincent Gap, drive to Vincent Gap, CA, 93563. The Vincent Gap trailhead is just off of HWY 2 and can be reached from Los Angeles in the west or from the Inland Empire in the east. Make sure to check HWY 2 road conditions before driving out, as bad weather or rock slides can shut things down.
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- See track on Strava
- Distance: 8 miles
- Elevation Gain: 2753 ft
- Minimum Elevation: 6644 ft
- Maximum Elevation: 9406 ft
- Time: 4 hours
- Difficulty: (3/5)
- Dog Friendly: Yes, on leash
- Permit Required: No
- Parking: Vincent Gap has a large parking lot right off of HWY 2
- Trail Condition: The entire trail is switchbacks of single track. Snow and ice can linger late into the year which makes the higher elevations potentially dangerous.
- Cell Phone Reception: Slim to none
Hike Map And Elevation Profile:
0.0 Miles (6664ft)- Starting from the Vincent Gap Parking Lot, head towards the restroom and trailhead. You’ll see a trail sign directing you to follow the path along the wooden gate. Do not take the trail that passes the gate on the left, that is for the Big Horn Mine hike.
The hike to Mt. Baden Powell is one of the more uneventful in the San Gabriels, as it consists of 4 miles of switchbacks that take you from the trailhead to the summit. Still, the beauty of the San Gabriels and the commanding views of the high desert more than make up for the lack of trail action.
0.9 Miles (7254ft)- You’ll come across a bench with views of Vincent Gulch. If you’re taking a slow pace, or just in need of a rest, this is a nice place to take a break.
3.0 Miles (8694ft)- The switchbacks start to get shorter and steeper, as the trial provides commanding views of the High Desert to the north.
3.6 Miles (9094ft)- You’ll reach a ridge that covers the final half mile to Mt. Baden Powell. You’ll see the summit block right in front of you as the views of Mt. Baldy and the southern San Gabriels come into play.
Along the ridge, you’ll pass by the Wally Waldron Tree. This 1500 year old limber pine is a California icon, and marks the junction point with the Pacific Crest Trail. The final .25 miles of this hike leaves the PCT behind to head to Mt. Baden-Powell.
4.0 Miles (9406ft)- The summit of Mt. Baden Powell is marked with a concrete marker to honor Lord Baden Powell. From the summit, you’ll have some of the best views in the San Gabriels.
This is an out and back hike, so you can return to your car at Vincent Gap using the same trail that you arrived on.