5 Peaks Hike – 03/20/2016

After a month of having a flu (thanks to my boss who was sick the same time I was) and later recovering, I finally hiked again. Originally, I want to do an easy one but my friend Dolores Grant wanted to do the 5 Peaks in the Angeles National Forest which I did last January. The only 3 differences now are that there is no snow, a different start route, and 1 more peak which is Mt. Markham (5,728 ft.). After being sick, it is like starting over, feeling the pain while exercising at the gym, bringing back my energy to hike again.
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Thanks to Tony Escamilla of ( Tony’s Fitness Challenge) for leading the group. The day was really perfect for hiking. Met at Sports Chalet and carpooled to the Eaton Saddle trail-head passing Red Box parking lot. An Adventure Pass is needed to park here. We started the hike at 8am. Passed by Mueller Tunnel to the mid point of the 5 peaks. To the left is Mt. Markham and Mt. Lowe.

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To the right are San Gabriel Peak, Mt. Disappointment, and Mt. Deception, in that order, we tackled first. Note that San Gabriel Peak (6,161 ft.) is the tallest among the 5 peaks and was considered the hardest to climb. We saw one small group in between the 3 peaks who got lost coming to Eaton Saddle trail-head. They had to catch up with us on our hike. We took photos along the way and in each peak.

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While in Mt. Deception, 2 hikers saw a small black snake. After the 3 peaks, we head back down to the mid point and had some snacks/lunch. After a few minutes, Tony told us to go Mt. Markham first but a small group of hikers ahead of us took Mt. Lowe first because the that trail was tricky to find. Going up Mt. Markham was a lot of scrambling among the rocks. A few sharped pointy plants got us temporarily. I thought it was the hardest peak to climb.

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On the top, we saw the peaks of Mt. San Antonio Baldy) and Mt. Harwood from afar and Mt. Wilson closer. Coming down, I thought it was going to be easier, but a hiker ahead of us took the wrong way. And so, we hit more sharped pointy plants along the way and soft gravel. 🙂 Now I know why Ricardo Cruz decided for the group not to do that peak in January especially when it is drizzling. We went up to our last peak, Mt. Lowe. Ate more snacks and took photos. Great achievement for the whole group to complete the 5 peaks.
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As we head down and back to Eaton Saddle trail-head around 2pm, we said our goodbyes. Total elevation for this hike was 3,920 ft. and 10+ miles. On this hike, it was great meeting again some familiar faces Roberto Castañón, Silvia Castañón, and Jacquese Scott. And also meeting new faces like Shelly Gaytan, the birthday girl, Hope, Cecilia Adame-Alva, and so many others. Till our next hikes ….

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