Saturday, December 17, 2016

Tongva Peak and Mt. Thom

Hiked: 12/12/2016
Distance: 6.2 miles round trip on trail
Summit Elevation: 2656' (Tongva), 2440' (Thom)
Elevation Gain: 1700'
Elevation Gain (in Empire State Buildings): 1.36
Round trip time: 2 hours 5 minutes
Recommended water: 24 oz.
Parking/Fees: Free on Beaudry Terrace
Difficulty: Easy

I had a few hours in Pasadena while my wife was at a professional conference. I was still recovering from a big outing in Anza-Borrego less than 48 hours prior, so I decided to do something light in the eastern Verdugo Mountains. I discovered the Beaudry Loop Trail from a peakbagger post by Mihai Giurgiulescu, thanks! The Beaudry Loop Trailhead starts near 3110 Beaudry Terrace in Glendale on a paved section of road that looks like a driveway. There was ample parking on both sides of the street. The paved road headed uphill to a wide, smooth dirt road.

Maple trees were showing off reds and yellows near the start. SoCal does have seasons, well, sort of. After a few switchbacks, the signed trail split into Beaudry Motorway North and South. I took the North road to hit Tongva Peak first. The day was a hazy shade of winter, overcast and cool with low clouds obscuring the Verdugos. It was comfortable hiking weather but bad for views. The road was one of the smoothest trails in recent memory with hardly any rocks larger than a marble. An uneventful stroll led to the antennae on Tongva Peak. A barbed wire fence surrounded the towers but not completely. The fence could be walked around on the south side but I didn't see the point. A summit plaque and bench were at a lookout point just south of the towers. No register was present. As expected the views were poor. I hung out on the bench a few minutes before heading toward Mt. Thom, maybe a half mile away.

Trail starts up what looks like a driveway


Beaudry north right, south to the left

Approaching Tongva Peak

Tongva towers

Summit plaque

Mt. Thom had a more serious fence with three strands of barbed wire wrapped in two coils of razor wire. This one completely surrounded the summit and a newer looking tower. I stopped at the fence and snapped a photo, only reading the warning after that the summit was considered critical infrastructure by Homeland Security and had audio and video monitoring equipment. Not a friendly summit at all. I headed down South Beaudry Motorway, following the twisty road around numerous small bumps. I caught infrequent glimpses of Burbank and Glendale through the clouds on the way down.

Approaching Mt. Thom

Visitors not welcome

Hazy view of downtown Burbank

Looking back

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