Sunday, May 3, 2015

Hike 2015.029B -- Big Dalton Canyon to Above Mystic Canyon Trail, Glendora

Hiked Sunday, April 19. Five miles. It's been a long time since my last hike on this trail--about four years, it would seem.

This area got some heavy visitation from me during my first two 100 hike years. This was because, at the start of the year, I was looking for low-altitude hikes. Also, later that first year was the Station Fire, and that closed off most of the Angeles National Forest, so I had to try other places.
More recently, however, it just hadn't hit my radar. I guess that's because it's a little far to drive from my home compared to what I can see--it's basically the same appearance as anywhere in the front range of the National Forest, or the canyons of the front range, and I've got several alternatives with similar scenery that I can get to more quickly than here.
But this is a different place, and so it was always out there as a possibility. Then, recently, a facebook friend who lives in the area had posted pictures from trails off of Glendora Mountain Road, and it got me thinking about this area, again. And so, just about two weeks ago, this trail became my destination.
The trailhead is off of Big Dalton Road, which braches east off of Glendora Mountain Road, just a few blocks north of Sierra Madre Ave. However, it had been long enough since my last visit here that I could not remember how to get here. I took some sort of round-about way.

Instead, from the west, I should have taken the Foothill Freeway (I-210) east, to Grand, then headed north to Route 66, then Route 66 east, to Loraine, then north on Loraine, to Sierra Madre Ave, then north on Glendora Mountain Road, to Big Dalton Canyon.
As noted, I took a different route. On the plus side, my route took me past "The Donut Man," which I made a note of, with the intent of stopping here on the way back.

"The Donut Man," by the way, is a bit of a local celebrity, having been visited by Huell Howser on several occasions.

Somehow, my father had heard about this place a few weeks back, and was talking about wanting to try some of these crazy donuts that people lined up for all morning long to get.
So the plan, was, once the donut shop was located, I'd continue on to my destination (Big Dalton Canyon), take a short hike, then return to pick up those donuts.

Things did go according to plan.
I started my hike at Big Dalton Canyon camp-ground. I've never come by this place when any of the facilities were open, and today was no exception. So I parked my car, crossed the little footbridge, then walked "downstream." There was no running water in this creek bottom, which is pretty much the norm, at least in my experience.
There were a few puddles of water here and there, but, mostly, there was little beyond muddy patches. There were a few flowers blooming here, but not much. And, mostly, it was just phacelia.
After heading down-canyon for about 1/4 mile, I passed another access point, where the Mystic Canyon trail begins. It begins steep, and climbs rather quickly up out of the canyon.
A link to some of the trails in Big Dalton Canyon is linked here. It doesn't quite fit all the places I hiked, though. The Mystic Canyon section is there. The map then shows it intersects with the Lower Monroe Trail. However, the only signage I saw further up was for Dalton IHC. I don't know what IHC stood for. But where the trail split, I continued up the gentler incline before it re-crossed the steep Punk Out trail. Then I took the Punk Out trail back down to Mystic Canyon Trail, then back to my car. I'll estimate 3.5 miles for the day, give or take 1/2 mile.

Stopped at got my donuts on the way back. Pricey, but delicious.

Not much hiking over the week since my Oak Glen trip, and not even time to blog the hikes I've already done. Feeling a bit under the weather.

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