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Mount Islip from Islip Saddle

San Gabriel + San Bernardino Mountains, California

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Mount Islip from Islip Saddle

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  • Ample parking and vault toilets can be found at Islip Saddle.- Mount Islip from Islip Saddle
  • Just across the street from the parking lot, jump onto the Pacific Crest Trail here.- Mount Islip from Islip Saddle
  • The trail meanders up a few switchbacks before assuming a gentle uphill grade.- Mount Islip from Islip Saddle
  • About a mile into the hike, you'll come across a dirt road. Continue straight across.- Mount Islip from Islip Saddle
  • Two miles in you'll pass Little Jimmy, a historic backcountry campground right off the PCT.- Mount Islip from Islip Saddle
  • Fire rings and old-timey backcountry ovens dot the landscape at Little Jimmy.- Mount Islip from Islip Saddle
  • Once you've passed the campground, continue heading south on the trail toward Windy Gap.- Mount Islip from Islip Saddle
  • You'll pass right by Little Jimmy Spring, which is a perennial source of water. Be sure to treat it first!- Mount Islip from Islip Saddle
  • Take a right at Windy Gap and head up the ridge toward Mount Islip.- Mount Islip from Islip Saddle
  • Old-growth pine trees surround you in this alpine forest ecosystem.- Mount Islip from Islip Saddle
  • The views at the top are incredible, with Palmdale on one side and Crystal Lake on the other!- Mount Islip from Islip Saddle
  • An old cabin still remains at the summit, making a good windbreak or snack spot.- Mount Islip from Islip Saddle
Overview + Weather
Pros: 
Sweeping views. Backcountry campsites. Big trees.
Cons: 
Limited access. More crowded in summer.
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Region:
San Gabriel + San Bernardino Mountains, CA
Congestion: 
Moderate
Pets allowed: 
Yes
Net Elevation Gain: 
1,597.00 ft (486.77 m)
Parking Pass: 
California Adventure Pass
Preferable Season(s):
Spring, Summer, Fall
Total Distance: 
6.50 mi (10.46 km)
Trail type: 
There-and-back
Trailhead Elevation: 
6,654.00 ft (2,028.14 m)
Current Local Weather:
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Hike Description

Hike Description

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Mount Islip is a great day trip from Los Angeles for anyone who really wants to feel like they’ve gotten away from the city and into some real-deal wilderness. Nestled in the higher elevation areas of the San Gabriel Mountains, this trail features incredible views, huge, old-growth pine trees, and a backcountry campground (Little Jimmy) only 2 miles in.

Park your vehicle at Islip Saddle, then cross the street and begin up the switchbacks where you see a large sign for the Pacific Crest Trail. Have fun hiking on this legendary footpath—you may even bump into a thru-hiker! After a quick jaunt up a steep section of trail, the going mellows out to a more gradual grade for the remainder of the journey. One mile in you’ll cross a dirt road with another PCT sign. Head straight across for another 1.1 miles until you reach Little Jimmy Campground on your right.

If you aren’t camping, pass Little Jimmy and head straight toward Little Jimmy Spring, which is an excellent perennial water source and snack break spot. Make sure to always treat your water before drinking it when in the wild! After the spring, continue south on the trail until you hit Windy Gap. Soak in the epic view you just earned before turning right and continuing up the ridge/trail to the summit of Mount Islip.

Mount Islip has the remnants of an abandoned cabin at the summit, in addition to a USGS marker and summit register. From here you’ll get breathtaking views toward Palmdale, Mount Baldy, and Crystal Lake. Snap a few photos and maybe eat a trail treat before heading back the way you came.

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Updates, Tips + Comments

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Field Guide

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Location + Directions

Location + Directions

Nearby Camping + Lodging

(23 within a 30 mile radius)

Nearby Adventures

(48 within a 30 mile radius)

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Adventure Community

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