Ascent of Mount Lukens on 2015-09-07

Climber: Dan Hoetger

Others in Party:Kirstin McLatchie
Date:Monday, September 7, 2015
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:Mount Lukens
    Elevation:5074 ft / 1546 m

Ascent Trip Report

A not-quite-alpine start (6:50am) on a 94 degree day to tick off Mt. Lukens. A few years back, not long after the Station Fire, I made a half-hearted attempt on it on a hot afternoon. An early start is a much better way as 90% of the trail is sun exposed and much more bearable/enjoyable at 70 degrees than 90+.

The trail is single track (until meeting up with the truck trail near the summit), 25% of which is over loose rock with occasional mini-canyon crossings where the trail has partially given way. (Not talking 2nd/3rd class moves; just deliberate foot placement. I'd read of a boy scout leader taking his troop here for their first hike... I'd advise against that.)

Also since the 2009 burn of the canyon, the plants have recovered and then some. I can't call it bushwhacking but I'd strongly recommend wearing long pants and long sleeves to minimize the scratches.

Not a particularly buggy route (except near the creek crossing at the start and at the peak) and it ranks quite highly in terms of elevation gain/distance of hikes close to LA. Definitely a solid conditioning hike (noting again that you might not be able to fly through the overgrown sections).

Spotted some roosting birds in the burn slope as well as two wild burro (!) on top which was quite the surprise. Time/distances noted includes about a 1/2 mile of wandering on top looking for the register and benchmark(s). Despite searching the east end of the summit, we missed the register, but found the La Crescenta H4 reference mark RM5 at the west end. Apparently there's also an RM4 mark on the west side as well. Reportedly the actual benchmark is long gone.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:4089 ft / 1245 m
    Total Elevation Loss:4089 ft / 1245 m
    Round-Trip Distance:8.2 mi / 13.1 km
    Quality:7 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Road Hike, Maintained Trail, Unmaintained Trail
    Weather:Hot, Calm, Clear
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:3889 ft / 1185 m
        Gain Breakdown:Net: 3289 ft / 1002 m; Extra: 600 ft / 182m
    Loss on way in:600 ft / 182 m
    Distance:4 mi / 6.5 km
    Route:Stone Canyon Trail
    Start Trailhead:1785 ft / 544 m
    Time:2 Hours 20 Minutes
Descent Statistics
    Loss on way out:3489 ft / 1063 m
        Loss Breakdown:Net: 3289 ft / 1002 m; Extra: 200 ft / 60m
    Gain on way out:200 ft / 60 m
    Distance:4.1 mi / 6.7 km
    Route:Stone Canyon Trail
    End Trailhead:1785 ft / 544 m
    Time:2 Hours 15 Minutes
GPS Data for Ascent/Trip

 GPS Waypoints - Hover or click to see name and lat/long
Peaks:  climbed and  unclimbed by Dan Hoetger
Click Here for a Full Screen Map
Note: GPS Tracks may not be accurate, and may not show the best route. Do not follow this route blindly. Conditions change frequently. Use of a GPS unit in the outdoors, even with a pre-loaded track, is no substitute for experience and good judgment. accepts NO responsibility or liability from use of this data.

Download this GPS track as a GPX file

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