Strawberry Peak Loop - Trail, La Canada, California

Strawberry Peak Loop - Trail, La Canada, California

DESCRIPTION

The fire road climbs steadily for 2.5 miles to the saddle between Josephine and Strawberry Peak. From the saddle, instead of following the fire road left up Josephine Peak, go right on the road-turned-singletrack towards Strawberry Peak. A short distance later the trail will stop and you will have to go left or right. Go left (up) to Strawberry Peak singletrack (right goes down Colby Cyn). The singletrack goes up and down following the contours of the mountain with some very steep drop-offs to the left. The trail can get very narrow (6" wide), so be careful and don't let your wheels stray too far to the edge of the trail and erode the edges. After about 5 miles, you drop into Strawberry Potrero. The trail sort of disappears for 100 feet or so, but don't panic, you'll find it to the right of an old picnic table. At the bottom of the potrero, there is another trail junction. Go right (uphill of course). It bears up for about 2 miles to the saddle between Strawberry Peak and Mt. Lawlor. From here it's almost all downhill singletrack with some awesome views and scary drop-offs. In another 2-3 miles, you reach the Hwy 2 and Red Box Ranger Station. Go to the far West corner of the parking lot (next to the highway and a picnic table) take the switchback down on to the trail again. The top part of this trail is old fire road but it quickly changes into singletrack again. After about 2 miles, there is a turnoff to the left (to the right returns to the highway and is seldom used). This part of the trail will finally end at Switzer's picnic grounds after about 4 miles from Redbox. Follow the paved and steep road up about 1/2 mile until you see a sign for a trail off to the left. Follow this last mile of single track back up to Clear Creek Junction (or you can follow the paved road another 200 feet to Hwy 2, make a left on Hwy 2 and you'll reach Clear Creek in less than a mile). The total ride distance is somewhere around 17 miles.

USER REVIEWS

Showing 1-10 of 26  
[Sep 04, 2014]
Egrabow
Weekend Warrior

Strawberry Peak Loop is open again. Trail is in good shape thanks to all the work done by CORBA with donations from REI and others. Usual softs spots and treacherous sections around the back side. Climb/hike out of the meadow. Downhill from the saddle down to Redbox is lots of fun. If you decide to loop back via Switzer campground the first part is nice but turns to rock hopping and trials riding once you get down to the stream bed.

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
4
[Mar 07, 2012]
Dickbrown
Weekend Warrior

THIS TRAIL CLOSED!

We didn't see the signs until we exited the fire road were we entered at HWY 2 and Angeles Crest. But they are there, still closed due to the station fire.

The fire road is a bit unkempt with lots of rocky parts. But still an a@# kicker! At one point every tree around you is completely scorched. When we got to the saddle after 2.5 miles we found the single track to the right. It is very grown over in parts and down right sketchy going along the backside of the mountain. Lots of rocks with a 6 inch or less track, oh ya, and a very steep grade on one side. About half a mile in to the single track the trail is completely gone. Looks like extreme erosion due to the vegetation loss. We couldn't even get around the first gravel washout on foot. If you fall you slide about 200 feet on sheer rock. As far as you can see around the mountain from this point the trail has been mostly taken out by rock slides. We were forced to turn around and stick to the fire roads.

Its very sad, as it looks like this trail may never recover. Even with many volunteers this trail may be lost.

OVERALL
RATING
1
VALUE
RATING
4
[Mar 10, 2009]
becik
Cross Country Rider

Just an update on the conditions.
The reviews of slowrider and rsmarq are still up to date.

Was there last Sunday,
Just a bit disappointed by the looseness of the surface, a bit too sandy to my east coast rider taste.
Definitely a trail builder accomplishment, with amazing views.
The best part really begin once you've reach the saddle between Strawberry Peak and Mt. Lawlor.

Customer Service

Maps available at Clear creek station.
Signalisation on the trail is realy minimal.

Similar Products Used:

we came back from red box to clear creek by the road,
(forced by a time secdule)

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
4
[Oct 20, 2008]
slowrider
Weekend Warrior

Fun 16 mile (on my computer) mostly singletrack ride with a few technical sections.
Some of the singletrack is cliffside with sandslides accross the trail that force you to dissmount to cross them, but only a few. The finish is fairly technical and a ton of fun.

Customer Service

We rode it clockwise and I wouldn't want to do it counterclockwise, Clockwise the 2.5 mile fireroad is a climb and all the technical stuff is downhill; especially the killer finish.

Similar Products Used:

JPL and redbox as a shuttle but this is a better all around ride.

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
3
[May 15, 2008]
rsmarg
Cross Country Rider

This is the archetypal Southern California trail. Fire road climb with great views followed by varied singletrack through pine, oak, and scrub with flowy, smooth stretches punctuated by technical speed checks. This trail is somewhat long but - with the exception of the first climb - is not exhausting.

The tread is in pretty good shape overall, though pretty sandy and loose in the first mile or so after Josephine Saddle.

From a trailbuilder's perspective, this trail is exemplary for its nice outslope and sophisticated retaining walls. Props to whomever got those in that far (heli, mule?) and installing them. There's also some neat stonework across some seasonal drainages.

The singletrack grade never gets too hairy (except the switchbacks out of the Colby Ranch junction). It is exposed a lot of time, so probably not a good summer ride. Definitely want full suspension, not because of big drops or anything, but for your body's sake. Great trail will return to again soon.

Customer Service

Directions above are spot-on. For exact mileage reference see Diane Fragnoli's "Mountain Biking Southern California's 100 Best Trails," although note that her mileage includes the climb to Josephine Peak. If you don't ride that then subtract 1.5 miles from the reference after you pass Josephine Saddle.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
4
[Apr 28, 2008]
rsmarg
Cross Country Rider

This is the archetypal Southern California trail. Fire road climb with great views followed by varied singletrack through pine, oak, and scrub with flowy, smooth stretches punctuated by technical speed checks. This trail is somewhat long but - with the exception of the first climb - is not exhausting.

The tread is in pretty good shape overall, though pretty sandy and loose in the first mile or so after Josephine Saddle.

From a trailbuilder's perspective, this trail is exemplary for its nice outslope and sophisticated retaining walls. Props to whomever got those in that far (heli, mule?) and installing them. There's also some neat stonework across some seasonal drainages.

The singletrack grade never gets too hairy (except the switchbacks out of the Colby Ranch junction). It is exposed a lot of time, so probably not a good summer ride. Definitely want full suspension, not because of big drops or anything, but for your body's sake. Great trail will return to again soon.

Customer Service

The directions listed are spot on. For mileage reference points see "Mountain Biking Southern California's Best 100 Trails," by Diane Fragnoli, but note the mileage includes the climb to Josephine Peak. If you opt not to ride that you should subtract 1.5 miles from the book's mileage notes after the saddle.

Similar Products Used:

First time in the San Gabriels. Great intro!

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
4
[Jul 08, 2007]
edwinharbor
Weekend Warrior

Rode there today (07/08/07). Someone has written, "Save this ride for Winter time." TRUE. I have done this one a few times (maybe once before during the Summer as well) - have done many of the local stuff (El Prieto, Winter Creak, Sunset Trail, etc...) in 100 degree weather - I like to train in the heat, sometimes. Anyway, Strawberry Peak in the 90 degree heat is HELL! I did it with a 70 ounce water cell, my buddy a 100 ouncer, thank God, because I was empty before we started crossing the South ridge line in the heat of the day (around 1pm). We nursed what he had left and made it to the Redbox trail head. Never thought luke warm, drinking fountain water, with hundreds of huge dead red ants pooling in it could taste so good!

Long story short, the trail was dry, loose and loamy, which made for some difficult leg work. This is a very fun trail in the cooler months, and a tough training ground in the warmer ones.

Oh yeah, there were three runners (two guys and lady) in their 40's running the entire thing from Wilson to Wilson - training for a 50k run in August. If they can do it, so can we! : 0

Customer Service

Start at Switzer parking lot, climb to the road, take the fireroad to the saddle, do the single track to Redbox and end back at you vehicle. Around 17 miles. 2.5 to 5 hours depending on the heat and you.

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
4
[May 20, 2007]
MC Hammer
Downhiller

Thier is extra singletract at the end of Strawberry Peak that will dump you off near your car! Just as you hit Hwy 2 at the end of the whoops section, cross the highway and continue to a parking lot. At the end of the parking lot is the start of a fantastic trail with all kinds of terrain. It has to be some of the best singletrack on the ride. After about 4 mles you will reach some benches and a parking lot. Continue on the parking lot till you reach a paved road that climbs for about 1/4 mile to Highway 2. Make a left and you will hit your car in about 400 yards.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
[Jan 30, 2007]
E Man
Cross Country Rider

Let me start by saying that I have been riding for about 10 years all over Washington, Moab and recently So Cal and consider myself a pretty good rider. This trail in relation to all the other trails I have ridden, has got to be in my top five without a doubt. This ride has everything a great ride should, fire road climb to get the juices flown', great views, and tight twisty singletrack that goes in and out of various terrian with decent exposure and great climbs. This trail has some of the best maintenance I have ever seen and is completely makeable start to finish. There is a switchback climb thats a bear and the tracking is soft good luck and remember walkings ok! Finished off ride with Gabrielo trail.

Customer Service

up fire road and follow trail back to the crest and cross over to grabrielo trail to switzers and climb paved road to the crest.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
4
[Jan 08, 2007]
Randy G
Cross Country Rider

Rode this on January 3rd in prime conditions: cool and breezy. The jeep road up is a half-hour bit of work, but nothing after that is particularly sweaty. This a a great 16.7 mile loop, from the Clear Creek station and looping down to Switzer. The trail is almost entirely non-technical; only a few rocks descending into and coming out of the Potrero area and several awkward spots coming down the Gabrielino (One 100 foot chute is not rideable by yours truly). This is what XC riding is all about: great scenery and exhilirating trails! The steep sidehills allow for great views, except that the narrow trail demands concentration at all times. The Gabrielino was more rocky than I expected from previous descriptions, with a loose surface that kept my speed down a bit. It's all good, though, and not to be missed. There was just a dusting of snow in the Potrero bowl. No big deal. I did not see another rider the whole ride!

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
3
Showing 1-10 of 26  

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