Hiking Strawberry Peak via Colby Canyon Trail

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Over a century ago, after exploring the San Gabriel Mountains, mountaineers looked across the way and saw a peak which resembled an upside down strawberry. They called it Strawberry Peak. Ever since then, the name stuck. Strawberry peak at 6,164 ft elevation is also the largest peak in the front range of the San Gabriel mountains. Views are outstanding as the trail ascends some classic San Gabriel brush covered slopes with a view of rolling hills and DTLA in the far distance.

Trail Condition:

The Colby Canyon trail is very good, but after splitting off from Colby Canyon Trail and following the ridge to strawberry peak is very bushy. Pants or jeans highly recommended. The last section of the hike becomes a class 3 scramble over boulders and rocks.

Map:

Hike Directions: Colby Canyon trail then after encountering a concrete saucer shaped structure, take the ridge line all the way to Strawberry Peak.

Hike Directions: Colby Canyon trail then after encountering a concrete saucer shaped structure, take the ridge line all the way to Strawberry Peak.

Hike Stats:

Distance: 6.4 miles total (Out-and-back)

Difficulty: 7.3/10

Time: 5 - 6 hours

Elevation Gain: 2,900 ft 

Shade: Little to none

Parking fees?: Adventure Pass Required for parking

Parking and Trailhead info:

Parking for this hike is right on a dirt stretch off the Angeles Crest Highway at: 701 Angeles Crest Hwy, Tujunga, CA 91042

The Trailhead is easily located and can be seen leading away from the dirt parking lot.

Trail Guide:

We had begun the ascent, a group of 15 at 7:00 AM sharp. Around the time, the sun had just barely started to come up. We would finish the hike around 1:00 PM.

Strawberry peak, way off in the distance, with light hitting the peak in the upper right of this photo.

Strawberry peak, way off in the distance, with light hitting the peak in the upper right of this photo.

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A little over 5 minutes into the hike, we crossed a running stream, still amazing to see in November after months of little to no rain.

The first light of the day, quite harsh, created shadows on the rolling hills to our left.

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1 mile in, classic brush covered slopes of the San Gabriels, twas the trail most of the way.

1 mile in, classic brush covered slopes of the San Gabriels, twas the trail most of the way.

The only turn in the hike: When you reach the end of the Colby Canyon Trail, a huge concrete saucer looking water structure will appear.

When you reach this concret structure, turn a right and follow the ridge the rest of the way to the peak.

When you reach this concret structure, turn a right and follow the ridge the rest of the way to the peak.

It may be easy to miss this trail and mistake for another one. Make sure the trail immediately ascends the hill after the concrete structure and follows a path to the peak more precisely. Following the ridge will lead all the way to the peak.

Following the ridge up to strawberry peak

Following the ridge up to strawberry peak

In the beginning of the climb after Colby Canyon Trail, the ridge is steep and a few rocky sections requiring some easy climbing to continue up. Nothing difficult. But best path finding will be necessary.

Deep in the ridge, downed trees and brush to walk over the whole way.

Deep in the ridge, downed trees and brush to walk over the whole way.

After fighting and stomping over downed bushed for about 45 minutes, the final rock scramble appeared, and just beyond it the peak.

Along the way to the peak, during the class 3 rock scramble, it may be confusing to find a proper path. But hikers have left red ribbons to guide towards the right path. If a path becomes too difficult, it's probably not the correct one. Any path can be a right path depending on one's level of confort on the mountainside.

Chad getting ready to send the final rock structure before the peak.

Chad getting ready to send the final rock structure before the peak.

Last path to the peak.

Last path to the peak.

After enjoying the successful summit, we headed back down the way we came. With a few photos of course. Because this is an out-and-back hike head back the same way to get back to the car.

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