6-Pack of Peaks: #1 Mount Baden-Powell Hike

  • Sun, April 29, 2018
  • 8:00 AM
  • Angeles National Forest near Big Pines



Photo courtesy of Time for a Hike

Great Outdoors is taking on the "6-Pack of Peaks Challenge"!  Our Los Angeles and Orange County/Long Beach chapters are teaming up to hike these six awesome, major SoCal peaks. Take the challenge with us and get your hike on! Our first, and "easiest" peak is Mount Baden Powell.


  • Date: Sunday, April 29, 2018 (alternate date, if snow hasn’t yet melted: Saturday, July 15)
  • Time: 8:00 am
  • Location: Near Big Pines, CA
  • Distance: 8 miles round trip
  • Elevation: 2,800 ft
  • Hike Time: 5 hours
  • Difficulty: Moderate to Strenuous
  • Trail Type: Well maintained trail
  • Hike Type: Out and Back


The second-most popular peak climb in the San Gabriels (after Baldy), and also the easiest. We’ll meet at Vincent Gap, right off Highway 2 about 53 miles east of La Cañada Flintridge or 5.5 miles west of Big Pines, at 8:00 am. Although the parking lot is huge, Vincent is one of the most popular trailheads on the Angeles National Forest, so we encourage carpooling (and this is the rationale for the early start). All parked cars need to display an Adventure Pass.

Baden-Powell is an 8-mile up-and-back-down hike boasting 2,800 feet of elevation gain and 41 switchbacks (which should give you an idea how steep it is). An optional side trip to one of the few surface springs on the Angeles National Forest will add about ¾ of a mile.

Photo courtesy of Westcentric

The trail is well signposted and easy to follow all the way to the top. At about the 3.5 mile mark and 9,000 feet of elevation, we’ll start to encounter 2,000-year-old limber pines, including the impressively-gnarled Waldron Tree. At the summit is a bronze-and-cement monument to Lord Robert Stevenson Smyth Baden-Powell, a British Army officer who founded the Boy Scouts in 1907. The summit offers breathtaking views in nearly 360 degrees – all the way to Long Beach to the south (on a clear day) and the south end of the Sierras to the north.

Photo courtesy of SoCal Hiker

We’ll plan to hike Baden-Powell on April 29, but in case the snow hasn’t melted by then a “snow check” date of July 15th will be planned. Registrants for the April hike will be informed at least a week ahead of time if we need to move the hike to July.

Directions to Trailhead

We’ll meet at Vincent Gap, right off Highway 2 - about 53 miles east of La Cañada Flintridge (at least 1 hour and a half) or 5.5 miles west of Big Pines, at 8:00 am.  

Google Maps

What to Bring

Good hiking boots/shoes. Pack a lunch, snacks and bring plenty of water. Bring a hat/cap and sunscreen. 

Hike Leader

Bryan Matsumoto. If you have any questions, please call Bryan at 626-246-8634 or e-mail bmotzbmotz@yahoo.com 

More information: https://socalhiker.net/hiking-mt-baden-powell/

About the SoCal Six Pack of Peaks Challenge

Southern California is a landscape of horizon-filling mountain ranges and towering peaks. Explore the highest highs with us this year!  The LA Chapter of Great Outdoors is scheduling hikes in partnership with the Orange County/Long Beach chapter,  to six of the tallest peaks in southern CA. Those with an interest can register for the SoCal Six Pack of Peaks Challenge here.

The “Starter” package is a $30 contribution, some of which goes to support Big City Mountaineers. BCM instills critical life skills in under-served youth through transformative wilderness mentoring expeditions.

Regardless of whether you register for the challenge or not, we hope you’ll consider joining us for all six peak climbs. Open to all, must be in good physical health, let's make this the year we climb all six!

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