I hadn’t hiked in the Verdugo Mountains in a long time and it was nice to return. I got lost in Glendale on the way to the trail and drove around for about 45 minutes before finally figuring it out. This area has some very confusing streets with five way intersections and street names that change for no reason. Anyway, the hike itself was great. The previous day’s rain cleared the air and the views were fantastic.
Exit on Glendale Avenue and head north on Canada/Verdugo roads (like I said, the names change for no reason I could tell. If you have a choice, take Canada over Verdugo and Verdugo over any other street). There are big blue street signs marking the roads, but the turn-off I needed was at a five way intersection and the name on the big sign was Santa Maria, which turns left off of the Canada at a 45 degree angle. Turn left on to Country Club Drive at a 90 degree angle when you see Santa Maria. The sign is small and the bigger sign is blocked by a tree, making it difficult to find if you don’t know the area. Then take a left on Beaudry Drive and park on the street where Beaudry Drive intersects with Beaudry Terrace. The trail begins next to a flood channel on a paved road. Hike up the road to a split. I chose to go up to the right first as I read it’s less steep, and I returned coming down the road on the left.
It all uphill to Tongva Peak, that spot with multiple antennae on top.
This trail is funny. There were a couple of times when I was sure I had finally reached the top, only to turn a corner and find more uphill trail in front of me. The water tower in photo 1 sits above one of those corners. There is an overlook across from the water tower.
Turning the corner also meant a nice view of Mount Lukens.
Photo 1 – The towering San Gabriel Mountains. I think I’m finally able to name many of these peaks. In the background, from left to right, I see Josephine Peak, Strawberry Peak, Mount Lawlor, Mount Disappointment and San Gabriel Peak in the far right corner. Photo 2 – More San Gabriel Mountains – the flat spot with the antennae is Mount Wilson, then to the right of that with the small antennae I believe is Mount Harvard, and below that is the recently hiked Jones Peak. I think that’s correct.
I reach Tongva Peak. Before I continued down the paved road, I walked up next to the fence for a surprise, a bench and a plaque.
Seeing Forever from Tongva Peak.
I headed down the road. That’s Mount Thom with Downtown LA to the right.
Photo 2 – Notice the three way split in the trail. To the right Verdugo Fire Road continues toward a junction with South Beaudry Fire Road, my return route. In the middle, a short jaunt to the top of Mount Thom. The road to the right is Las Flores Fire Road, which also leads down to the bottom of the mountain. I walked around the perimeter of the installation on Mount Thom for more spectacular views.
Tongva Peak on the left, Mount Lukens in the background
The San Gabriel Mountains
Close-up of Griffith Park
Photo 2 – Close-up of Downtown. I believe the area to the right with the large body of water is MacArthur Park.