Quantcast
4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs

Gape at the view from Twin Peaks, high atop the San Gabriel Mountains.

The "top of the world" views from Twin Peaks ridge are among the best in the San Gabriel Mountains. Sometimes in summer (and often in winter) you can look south over a low-lying blanket of fog or smog in the Los Angeles Basin and see Santa Catalina Island floating beyond the hazy dome of the Palos Verdes peninsula. The Santa Ana, Palomar, Santa Rosa, and San Jacinto mountain ranges arc around the horizon from south to east.

June is a perfect month to undertake the strenuous ten-mile trek to Twin Peaks and back. Springtime lingers long at these elevations of between 7000 and 8000 feet, and the air is scented with the fresh fragrance of sun-warmed pines. Be sure to bring along plenty of water, especially if you will be hiking in the heat of the day.

You'll begin hiking on the Mt. Waterman Trail, which starts on the south side of Angeles Crest Highway (Highway 2) about midway through the highway's long and windy course between La Ca�ada and Wrightwood. Park your car at the Buckhorn trailhead, which is located at mile 58.0 according to the highway mileage signs (you'll need to post a National Forest Adventure Pass on your car for the privilege of parking). Cross the highway to reach the start of the trail.

Follow the well-graded foot trail -- not the old road bed that parallels the trail at first -- along a shady slope. After 1.0 mile of easy ascent through gorgeous mixed-conifer forest, you come to a saddle overlooking Bear Creek. The trail turns west, follows a viewful ridge, and then ascends on six long switchbacks to a trail junction, 2.1 miles. The trail to Waterman Mountain's summit goes right; you stay left and eventually zigzag south down to a second junction, 3.5 miles. Make a hard left here and continue descending a more primitive trail to Twin Peak Saddle (6550'), the lowest point on the divide separating upper Devil Canyon from upper Bear Creek.

From Twin Peaks Saddle, the now-sketchy trail contours south to reach a second saddle (6580') at the north base of Twin Peaks ridge. From there, you simply go straight up the slope, dodging boulders and trees, until you arrive on the ridgeline between the two peaks. Climb a short distance east to bag the 7761-foot eastern peak. If you drop a short way down to rock outcrops south and east, just below the summit, you'll have a dizzying view of the secret, upper reaches of Bear Creek's West Fork. Serrated ridges of shattered diorite, a rock-climber's nightmare, seem to tumble into the pit below.

If you are ready for a little more adventure before returning, go ahead and climb the 7596-foot west peak as well. The view south from there is even more vertiginous. Keep an eye out for Nelson bighorn sheep. Hikers signing the registers on both peaks have reported frequent sightings of these shy, elusive creatures.

Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all

Previous article

What a teachers union has done to Gompers

29 teachers laid off in June, re-hired in July
Next Article

Imagine a pedestrian-friendly Kearny Mesa

Hard to consider history in 30-year plan

The "top of the world" views from Twin Peaks ridge are among the best in the San Gabriel Mountains. Sometimes in summer (and often in winter) you can look south over a low-lying blanket of fog or smog in the Los Angeles Basin and see Santa Catalina Island floating beyond the hazy dome of the Palos Verdes peninsula. The Santa Ana, Palomar, Santa Rosa, and San Jacinto mountain ranges arc around the horizon from south to east.

June is a perfect month to undertake the strenuous ten-mile trek to Twin Peaks and back. Springtime lingers long at these elevations of between 7000 and 8000 feet, and the air is scented with the fresh fragrance of sun-warmed pines. Be sure to bring along plenty of water, especially if you will be hiking in the heat of the day.

You'll begin hiking on the Mt. Waterman Trail, which starts on the south side of Angeles Crest Highway (Highway 2) about midway through the highway's long and windy course between La Ca�ada and Wrightwood. Park your car at the Buckhorn trailhead, which is located at mile 58.0 according to the highway mileage signs (you'll need to post a National Forest Adventure Pass on your car for the privilege of parking). Cross the highway to reach the start of the trail.

Follow the well-graded foot trail -- not the old road bed that parallels the trail at first -- along a shady slope. After 1.0 mile of easy ascent through gorgeous mixed-conifer forest, you come to a saddle overlooking Bear Creek. The trail turns west, follows a viewful ridge, and then ascends on six long switchbacks to a trail junction, 2.1 miles. The trail to Waterman Mountain's summit goes right; you stay left and eventually zigzag south down to a second junction, 3.5 miles. Make a hard left here and continue descending a more primitive trail to Twin Peak Saddle (6550'), the lowest point on the divide separating upper Devil Canyon from upper Bear Creek.

From Twin Peaks Saddle, the now-sketchy trail contours south to reach a second saddle (6580') at the north base of Twin Peaks ridge. From there, you simply go straight up the slope, dodging boulders and trees, until you arrive on the ridgeline between the two peaks. Climb a short distance east to bag the 7761-foot eastern peak. If you drop a short way down to rock outcrops south and east, just below the summit, you'll have a dizzying view of the secret, upper reaches of Bear Creek's West Fork. Serrated ridges of shattered diorite, a rock-climber's nightmare, seem to tumble into the pit below.

If you are ready for a little more adventure before returning, go ahead and climb the 7596-foot west peak as well. The view south from there is even more vertiginous. Keep an eye out for Nelson bighorn sheep. Hikers signing the registers on both peaks have reported frequent sightings of these shy, elusive creatures.

Sponsored
Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all
Previous article

Ocean Beach trash altruist

Cameron Reid covers Niagara and Narragansett, Sunset Cliffs to Abbott.
Next Article

Terra Lawson-Remer out-raises Kristin Gaspar

San Diego State not ready for emergency
Comments
0

Be the first to leave a comment.

Sign in to comment

Sign in

Art Reviews — W.S. Di Piero's eye on exhibits Ask a Hipster — Advice you didn't know you needed Best Buys — San Diego shopping Big Screen — Movie commentary Blurt — Music's inside track Booze News — San Diego spirits City Lights — News and politics Classical Music — Immortal beauty Classifieds — Free and easy Cover Stories — Front-page features Excerpts — Literary and spiritual excerpts Famous Former Neighbors — Next-door celebs Feast! — Food & drink reviews Feature Stories — Local news & stories From the Archives — Spotlight on the past Golden Dreams — Talk of the town Here's the Deal — Chad Deal's watering holes Just Announced — The scoop on shows Letters — Our inbox [email protected] — Local movie buffs share favorites Movie Reviews — Our critics' picks and pans Musician Interviews — Up close with local artists Neighborhood News from Stringers — Hyperlocal news News Ticker — News & politics Obermeyer — San Diego politics illustrated Of Note — Concert picks Out & About — What's Happening Overheard in San Diego — Eavesdropping illustrated Poetry — The old and the new Pour Over — Grab a cup Reader Travel — Travel section built by travelers Reading — The hunt for intellectuals Roam-O-Rama — SoCal's best hiking/biking trails San Diego Beer News — Inside San Diego suds SD on the QT — Almost factual news Set 'em Up Joe — Bartenders' drink recipes Sheep and Goats — Places of worship Special Issues — The best of Sports — Athletics without gush Street Style — San Diego streets have style Suit Up — Fashion tips for dudes Theater Reviews — Local productions Theater antireviews — Narrow your search Tin Fork — Silver spoon alternative Under the Radar — Matt Potter's undercover work Unforgettable — Long-ago San Diego Unreal Estate — San Diego's priciest pads Waterfront — All things ocean Your Week — Daily event picks
4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
Close