Mighty Among Giants

Hike to Stoddard Peak near Mount Baldy in Los Angeles County

It’s not the tallest summit, but at 4,624 feet Stoddard Peak near Los Angeles is still mighty among nearby giants like Mount Baldy and the popular Potato Mountain. It’s also less trafficked. Go on a 5.9-mile (round-trip) hike where the 1,145-foot elevation gain is felt mostly in the last stretch. And the reward? Huge!

The hike begins smoothly, circling up a fire road nestled in the shaded forest for the first 2.5 miles. As you navigate the trail, you’ll see the neighboring peaks of Mount Baldy, Mount Harwood, and other high summits currently topped with snow.

After a leisurely uphill, the last 0.9 mile is when you’ll kick it into gear. A trail marker points the way up to a ridge. The ridgeline has two false peaks before you get to the brilliant summit vista for a panorama of peaks.

From downtown Los Angeles, take the I-10 E to the 210 E. Take Exit 52 toward Base Line Rd. Continue via Padua Ave. The parking lot is off of Mt. Baldy Rd. Note: Along the route, you’ll pass homes of local residents and a gate with a sign saying “Road Closed.” All of the gates and fences have spaces to walk through and are welcome to hikers. Dog-friendly!

Story and photos by Breonna Carter, @mountainsquake.

Trending Stories NorCal

View all Stories
  1. Up Umunhum

    Rising from the Santa Cruz Mountains, Mount Umunhum is one of the Bay Area’s highest points, reaching an impressive 3,486 feet. With the new 7.4-mile (round-trip) addition to the Bay Area Ridge Trail, locals can finally step up to its peak.

  2. Cross It Off Your Bucket List

    Crosstown Trail San Francisco may be one of the most beautiful city walks in America, passing through less-visited nooks and crannies while also taking in greatest hits, including mosaic stairways.

  3. Kirby Your Enthusiasm

    Just west of the Golden Gate Bridge in Marin is one of the Bay's most-accessible secluded beaches. Kirby Cove is accessed by hiking or biking a 1-mile fire road down to the beach, where the reward is an all-time classic Golden Gate view.

  4. Napa's Wild Side

    It’s wine country’s Amazon. Cutting 50 miles through the famous Napa Valley and emptying into San Pablo Bay, the gentle Napa River is an ecological—and recreational—delight. And Napa Valley Paddle helps you enjoy it.


Trending Stories SoCal

View all Stories
  1. Sponsored

    Weekend Sherpa Podcast: Take it Outside

    Adventure for your earbuds. What's new in the world of the outdoors? Listen to Weekend Sherpa co-founders discuss local hikes, beaches, bike rides, camping spots and all kinds of travel and adventure in California and beyond!

  2. Secret Trail at Torrey Pines

    Find cliff climbs, sandy strolls, and secret hikes throughout “America’s finest sandy stretch" at Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve in San Diego County.

  3. Secluded Royale

    Panoramic coastal views and a killer leg workout combine on this 2.7-mile (round-trip) out-and-back hike to secluded Coast Royale Beach in Orange County

  4. Border Field State Park

    Border Field State Park is the southernmost point in California as well as one of the last beautiful undeveloped coastlines in the state. Visit this natural refuge for a 4.5-mile hike featuring important history and wildlife habitats, plus stunning SoCal beach scenery.