Trail Distance: 8.7 miles
Elevation Gain: ~2900 ft.
Terrain Rating: Moderate - dirt, switchbacks and elevation
Hike Time: 4 hours
Dog Friendly: Yes
Recommended Seasons: Summer, Fall
Hiking Mount Baden Powell is a great physically-demanding hike with very few views until you reach the top, where you’re rewarded with 360° views of the surrounding San Gabriel Mountains
We started up Mount Baden Powell on a hot summer day. This trail cuts the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) so it was on our list for a while. We waited for July to come here because there was still snow up top! The hike itself starts at 9,399 ft. so that’s no surprise. The hike starts fairly quickly from the trailhead - for 40 switchbacks.
When you first start out, about 1 mile in you’ll have a bench to relax on. It was a little bit too soon for us so we skipped the bench and pressed on. After winding around for a long, long time, you’ll notice the shrubbery start to change a little and become more barren. That means you’re ever closer to the summit!
Once we hit the ridge line, we were taken aback by how beautiful it was. I was huffing and puffing from the elevation, so I used this time to take a breather. It’s a little less than a mile from here until you reach the top. Mount Baden Powell has a fairly vast peak, so I would suggest bringing some lunch! We saw a few folks laying in their hammock.
The way down is boring so we went into a semi jog. Overall the hike is fairly mundane during the switchbacks but completely worth it for the view. Who knew we had such good hiking so close to city??
What I packed: