The hike to Big Pine Lakes via the North Fork Trail is a great way to see the beauty on display in the Sierra Nevada mountains. Starting at the Big Pine Creek Campground, this trail passes by Mt. Alice, before entering the John Muir Trail Wilderness of Inyo National Forest. There are 7 Big Pine Lakes numbered sequentially. For this hike, we only visited the first three, as snow and ice were blocking the trail for lakes 4-7. The first three lakes are known to be the most scenic, as they sit with the majestic Temple Crag in the background.
Mono Lake is a large and shallow salt water lake just east of Yosemite National Park on HWY 395. Mono Lake is best known for it’s sweeping views of the Sierra Nevada mountains and it’s iconic tufas. One of the best places to see tufas along the shores of Mono Lake, is on the South Tufa Trail.
Cucamonga Peak via the Icehouse Canyon Trail is a 12 mile out-and-back hike that gains 4,339ft with a max elevation of 8,858ft. Located in the Cucamonga Wilderness of the San Bernardino National Forest, Cucamonga Peak sits in the front range of the San Gabriel Mountains. Although Mt. Baldy is the most well known peak in the San Gabriels, Cucamonga Peak is known for commanding the best views.
Mt. Baldy via the Ski Hut Trail is one of the most popular hikes in Southern California. The Ski Hut Trail is also known as the Baldy Bowl Trail, which should not be confused with the Baldy Bowl mountaineering route. This hike begins at the 6160ft trailhead of Manker Flats and gains 4100ft of elevation in 4 miles to the 10,064 summit of Mt. Baldy.
Black Mountain in Tehachapi is officially referred to as Black Mountain #3 to differentiate it from the other Black Mountains here in California. Standing tall at 5686ft, the summit of Black Mountain provides a bird’s eye view of Tehachapi and the surrounding area.
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.
Alabama Hills is a recreation area made up of scenic rocks and hills located in the Owen’s Valley. Sitting on the eastern slopes of the Sierra Nevada, Alabama Hills has some of the most impressive low-elevation views a visitor can hope to see of Mt. Whitney and it’s surrounding peaks. In this post I’ll include instructions for this hike and information on camping at Alabama Hills, along with maps and photos.
The Bear Canyon Trail, also known as Old Mt. Baldy Trail, is one of the toughest routes leading to the 10,064 summit of Mt. Baldy. Gaining 5,848ft in 6.4 miles, this hike requires a solid base level of fitness and a lot of determination.