Ascent of Mount San Antonio on 2018-04-19

Climber: Alex Lennon

Date:Thursday, April 19, 2018
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Mount San Antonio
    Elevation:10064 ft / 3067 m

Ascent Trip Report

The forecast looked pretty grim before we left our Air B&B- Duncan and I debated whether or not to drive up to the San Gabriels at all. Strong gusts and subzero wind chills, along with a good chance of afternoon snow, seemed less than ideal. Still, it was my last full day near LA and I wanted to try to bag San Antonio before I left. And man, I'm really glad I did! It ended up being an amazing weather day. driving up the Baldy road it was raining lightly and I had Duncan drop me off at the trailhead; he was going off to hike Sunset Peak as he'd already been up here. At the trailhead the rain had luckily turned to snow. I wore rain pants and jacket over my usual layers, and stayed perfectly dry. Pleasant snow flurries were falling for the first half an hour or so of the hike, and I was definitely enjoying myself. After a bit the snow even started to accumulate, though not enough to obscure the path. But just before I reached the Sierra Club ski hut, the sun came out and the skies above me cleared.

As I soon discovered, the skies below me had not; it was an inversion! Not a smog inversion either- proper undercast clouds. The winds which I had heard whipping above me from the bottom of Baldy Bowl had eased up as well. I followed the braided network of footpaths up the ridge west of the bowl, and before too long the steep grade eased off and I found myself nearly at the summit. It was beautiful up here! San Jacinto was totally buried under clouds; the San Bernardino Mountains mostly were as well. LA was buried. Looking down at the clouds all around me, it felt like i was in an airplane, but I didn't even have to deal with LAX. It was awesome watching the mist filling in the numerous valleys and canyons of the San Gabriel range. I became aware that the inverted cloud layer was in fact rising toward me, so I didn't spend more than 10 minutes on top. Due to the impending low visibility, I opted not to descend the Devil's Backbone either. Even though it looked super cool, it would require better visibility. So I soaked in these amazing views for a few more minutes, then started down the way I'd come. The hike down was easy, and I was car-to-car in a little over three and a half hours. I was stoked to have made it up here especially given the bad forecast, and also proud to have climbed the 3 LA ultras in under 48 hours! Having both accomplished our LA goals, it's time to rest up this afternoon before Duncan and I catch the Red Sox-Angels game down in Anaheim tonight. Go Sox!
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:3900 ft / 1188 m
    Route Conditions:
Road Hike, Maintained Trail, Snow on Ground
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:3900 ft / 1188 m
    Start Trailhead:6164 ft / 1878 m
Descent Statistics

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