MemberJanuary 21, 2018 at 8:44 pm
Hi All. We just did the Mount Wilson hike from Chantry Flats so I thought I'd put some notes since I'm still a fairly new hiker (just under a year) and all trail notes help me a ton when I'm planning.
1) We've done hikes from here before and the road was always open, so were surprised to find it closed (winter season hours) until 6:00am. But when we arrived at 5:30 there were already several cars waiting and most definitely the parking lot filled up before 7am, so start as early as you can if you don't want an additional mile or so walk to your car afterwards.
2) I like to read the blog Modern Hiker to get trail information. He is usually pretty detailed about the state of the hike and what to expect. I've also learned that I am about 10 minutes slower than his miles, so I can estimate my time roughly on the time he posts. (I always time my hikes to learn the average time I take per mile so that I can estimate my total time, and also my water consumption). I was the slowest one in our group and it took us 4 1/2 hours up and 3 1/2 hours down, plus a lunch break at the top.
3) I preferred starting off by going DOWN the cement road (towards the falls) and then up towards the summit, and coming down the trail towards the old toll road and ending at the cafe picnic area. That way at the end of the hike you're not walking up ugly cement. Just a preference.
4) This was a knee buster for me. I recommend KT tape if you've got sensitive knees like me.
5) Beautiful hike right now in January- but COLD. gloves, hat and many layers all needed and used. NO bugs right now which is great but the summertime the bugs come out like crazy.