Summit 2760 via Mystic Canyon Trail and Monroe Truck Trail (Big Dalton Canyon)
- Location: Big Dalton Canyon park in Glendora. From L.A. and Pasadena, take I-210 to the Grand Ave. north exit. Head north on Grand Ave. for 1.9 miles to Sierra Madre. Take a right on Sierra Madre and go 2 miles to Glendora Mountain Road. Take a left and go 0.6 miles to Big Dalton Canyon Road. Turn right, go 0.5 miles and park in the dirt turnout by the Wren Meacham trail and pick up the Mystic Canyon Trail across the street. From the Inland Empire and points east, take the Lone Hill exit from I-210 and head north for one mile. Turn left on Foothill, go 0.5 miles and take a right on Valley Center. Go 0.8 miles and make a left on Sierra Madre, and immediately make a right on Glendora Mountain Road. Take Glendora Mountain 0.6 miles and turn right on Big Dalton Canyon.
- Agency: City of Glendora; Angeles National Forest/San Gabriel River Ranger District
- Distance: 5.8 miles
- Elevation gain: 1,600 feet
- Difficulty Rating: PG-13 (Elevation gain, steepness, terrain)
- Suggested time: 1 hour
- Best season: October – May
- USGS topo map: Glendora
- Recommended gear: hiking poles; sunblock; sun hat; insect repellent
- More information: Trip report here; Everytrail report here
- Rating: 7
From the edge of Glendora, this hike from Big Dalton Canyon Park provides a taste of the Angeles National Forest. Summit 2760 is a bump along the ridge on the north side of Big Dalton Canyon with nice views of the L.A. area and the high peaks of the eastern San Gabriels. If the weather is clear, you can see the Palos Verdes Peninsula, downtown Santa Monica and Catalina Island.
From the parking area, cross Big Dalton Canyon Road and begin hiking on the Mystic Trail. The trail enters a grove of trees, staying straight as the Big Dalton Trail heads right. Unfortunately, the trees amount to little more than a tease, as there is not much shade on the hike. The trail leaves the canyon and climbs steeply over loose terrain. Keep in mind that when you are descending this stretch, your legs are likely to be tired, so take extra care.
The Mystic Canyon Trail zigzags its way up the canyon, taking in some nice views, reaching the Lower Monroe Truck Trail after a mile. You will also see the steep Poop-Out Trail, an alternative route, and the lower end of the truck trail leading down to Glendora Mountain Road. After enjoying the view, turn right and continue your ascent on the motorway, which is a defacto single-track trail.
At 1.4 miles, after passing a junction with the steep and rough Punk Out Trail, the route curves to a north facing slope, offering some pleasant shade. It makes a wide curve to the west, with some good views of the L.A. Basin and makes a few more switchbacks. You will see the bump of Summit 2760 at this point, as well as the more prominent bump of Summit 3397 in the distance.
After rounding the bottom of the bump and passing the upper end of the Punk Out Trail at 2.8 miles, look for a spur in back of you heading uphill to Summit 2760. After enjoying the view, you can return by the same route or continue following the trail to Summit 3397, 1.8 miles farther. The taller summit is used as a bee keeping facility in the spring, and is fenced off, but if you can’t make it all the way to the peak, a saddle just below, with great views of Mt. Baldy, is a good destination.
Text and photography copyright 2013 by David W. Lockeretz, all rights reserved. Information and opinions provided are kept current to the best of the author’s ability. All readers hike at their own risk, and should be aware of the possible dangers of hiking, walking and other outdoor activities. The author does not take any responsibility for injuries sustained during hikes or walks on the routes described here. Check the informational links provided for up to date trail condition information.
David, I once had a very mystical experience in this canyon. Really, no pun. I will have to tell you about it sometime. 🙂
Cool, looking forward to hearing about it – maybe as a guest blog post?
Here’s my write-up of a late-spring visit to Big Dalton Canyon. Nice flowers, then. Some sections get way overgrown then, as well. I think they clear the trails some later in the year.