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

Bear Flat in the San Gabriel Mountains offers a perch for viewing bighorn sheep.

Barely a mile's walk from the little community of Mount Baldy (at the base of 10,000-foot-high Old Baldy, or Mount San Antonio), you can be sitting on a rock, communing with nature, feet dangling in the sun-and-shade-dappled, crystalline stream of Bear Canyon. With a bit more time and energy, you can climb to Bear Flat, where a binocular sweep of the surrounding hillsides often nets sightings of bighorn sheep.

To get to the hike's starting point, exit the 210 Freeway at Mills Avenue in Claremont, and follow Mills north toward the mountains. After about a mile Mills becomes Mount Baldy Road. An eight-mile uphill drive through San Antonio Canyon on Mount Baldy Road takes you to the small village of Mount Baldy.

You begin walking at the intersection of Mt. Baldy Road and Bear Creek Road, in the center of Mt. Baldy village. (A small parking lot is located right at the foot of Bear Creek Road.) Walk -- don't drive -- up the paved road to its end (0.4 mile), then continue on a dirt trail that soon becomes narrow.

Many cabins, in various stages of repair (or ruin), line the way as you proceed up drainage of Bear Canyon. Nonnative ground-covering vegetation like ivy and vinca have overrun the bottom of the canyon, and magnificent native live oak, bay laurel, and bigcone Douglas-fir trees rise from that understory. After crossing the creek twice, the trail divides. Take either path: the right branch climbs up the right slope; the left branch stays low along stream, passing more cabins, before curving right to join the other branch.

After the two paths rejoin, the main Bear Canyon Trail goes by a water tank (part of the village's water supply), switches back, curves around sun-struck slopes, and plunges into a shady oak grove high on the east slope of the canyon. At about 1.7 miles, the trail crosses the stream for the last time. Bear Flat is the bracken-fern-filled, sloping meadow just above this crossing. For casual hikers, this is the place to sniff a few spring wildflowers, look for bighorn sheep tracks, and then think about turning back. Beyond this, the Bear Flat Trail switchbacks up to the south ridge of Mount San Antonio and relentlessly continues all the way to the summit, almost five miles away, 4500 feet higher than Bear Flat.

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

Previous article

San Diego Lotharios rejoice at news of mandatory 10 pm nightlife shutdown

Closed Doors = Closed Deals
Next Article

The Tobacconist: Stogie story

His job is to sell pleasure and desire, cigars “hand-rolled tenderly by beautiful women on their thighs.”

Barely a mile's walk from the little community of Mount Baldy (at the base of 10,000-foot-high Old Baldy, or Mount San Antonio), you can be sitting on a rock, communing with nature, feet dangling in the sun-and-shade-dappled, crystalline stream of Bear Canyon. With a bit more time and energy, you can climb to Bear Flat, where a binocular sweep of the surrounding hillsides often nets sightings of bighorn sheep.

To get to the hike's starting point, exit the 210 Freeway at Mills Avenue in Claremont, and follow Mills north toward the mountains. After about a mile Mills becomes Mount Baldy Road. An eight-mile uphill drive through San Antonio Canyon on Mount Baldy Road takes you to the small village of Mount Baldy.

You begin walking at the intersection of Mt. Baldy Road and Bear Creek Road, in the center of Mt. Baldy village. (A small parking lot is located right at the foot of Bear Creek Road.) Walk -- don't drive -- up the paved road to its end (0.4 mile), then continue on a dirt trail that soon becomes narrow.

Many cabins, in various stages of repair (or ruin), line the way as you proceed up drainage of Bear Canyon. Nonnative ground-covering vegetation like ivy and vinca have overrun the bottom of the canyon, and magnificent native live oak, bay laurel, and bigcone Douglas-fir trees rise from that understory. After crossing the creek twice, the trail divides. Take either path: the right branch climbs up the right slope; the left branch stays low along stream, passing more cabins, before curving right to join the other branch.

After the two paths rejoin, the main Bear Canyon Trail goes by a water tank (part of the village's water supply), switches back, curves around sun-struck slopes, and plunges into a shady oak grove high on the east slope of the canyon. At about 1.7 miles, the trail crosses the stream for the last time. Bear Flat is the bracken-fern-filled, sloping meadow just above this crossing. For casual hikers, this is the place to sniff a few spring wildflowers, look for bighorn sheep tracks, and then think about turning back. Beyond this, the Bear Flat Trail switchbacks up to the south ridge of Mount San Antonio and relentlessly continues all the way to the summit, almost five miles away, 4500 feet higher than Bear Flat.

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

The Tobacconist: Stogie story

His job is to sell pleasure and desire, cigars “hand-rolled tenderly by beautiful women on their thighs.”
Next Article

The Red, White, and Blue can never tell a lie: San Diego was the place to be for the Fourth of July!

America’s Finest County
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