Uphill Both Ways

Hike Wren Meacham Trail in Glendora's Big Dalton Wilderness

Wren Meacham Trail in Glendora’s Big Dalton Wilderness Area is a 1.9-mile out-and-back trail that’s uphill both ways. It boasts a whopping 744 feet of elevation, and you get to climb it twice, with fabulous views for extra inspiration.

It all starts on the canyon floor, appearing as a pleasant stroll through the riparian woodland shaded by coast live oaks. After a couple of easy stream crossings (careful after big rains), you’ll see the official start to the Wren Meacham Trail, where the elevation gain kicks in (spoiler alert: it looks like stairs).

Right off the bat the trail climbs steeply as it makes its way out of the canyon and skirts the edges of the mountainside. It never summits any of the small peaks, but it sure feels like it should! The surrounding views are lovely all around—from the canyon to the snowcapped San Gabriel Mountains, or all the way out to downtown Los Angeles on clear days.

Be sure to watch out for snakes and mind your footing—the steep grades can be slippery (use caution). The occasional screech of a red-tailed hawk pierces the air, but otherwise you’ll likely find nothing but solitude. After approximately half a mile of solid climbing, the trail starts descending to the canyon, ultimately ending at a fenced-off dam and storm drains (a rather anticlimactic end to all that effort but the views along the way more than make up for it).

After catching your breath, turn around and do the whole thing again! You’ve got this.

The Wren Meacham Trail is in the Big Dalton Wilderness Area in Glendora. Park is open from 7 a.m. till sunset. Dog-friendly.

Story and photos by Natalie Bates, @wanderwithnatalie

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