Hoyt Mountain Hike Featured
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Los Angeles Hikes

Hoyt Mountain Hike

  • 3.9 miles - Moderate Effort
  • 2 Hours (Total)
  • 1,430 Total Feet of Climbing
  • Max Elevation of 4,404 feet
  • Leashed Dogs Allowed

The hike to Hoyt Mountain, often overshadowed by its more popular neighbors, is a great adventure packed into 4 miles. To start, you'll scramble up a challenging use trail to the summit, which offers panoramic views into Angeles National Forest and along the San Gabriel Fault. The hike continues by looping down and circling the mountain along an old trail blasted out of the cliffside about 100 years ago. Along the way, you'll even pass LA's outdoor school for kids, which has been operating continuously since 1925.

In this Guide:
  • Video and Turn-by-Turn Directions for Hoyt Mountain
  • Where to Park For the Hike
  • Insider Tips & Recommendations

Where is Hoyt Mountain?

You can find the trailhead a short way up CA-2, the Angeles Crest Highway, at Georges Gap. Use this trailhead address:
Georges Gap, Tujunga, CA 91042

Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 1
There are a dozen or so spots at the Georges Gap trailhead.

You don't need a pass to park at Georges Gap.

Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 2
The trailhead is at the end of the parking lot, through the little wall.

Gear For the Hike

The first part of the hike requires a steep climb up a loose dirt trail, and then there's a steep descent; having trekking poles and good footwear is a must here. Long pants are also helpful if some sections are overgrown. 1L of water is enough for the short distance, even in the summer when it can be very hot at this lower elevation.

Gear That I Love Right Now

Nothing is sponsored or promoted, just the actual gear that I use.

Gear Inreach Mini 2
Garmin InReach Mini 2Hit SOS or just tell loved ones that you're running late where your cell phone has no service.  Review here.
Gear Topo Pursuit
Topo Pursuit 2The best hiking footwear I've ever owned. No blisters. Get them wet, they dry quickly. Lots of cushion and comfort.
Gear Epix Pro Up Ahead
Garmin Epix ProHiking maps, route info, and fitness stats on my wrist. Review here.
Hikelite 26 Gear
Osprey Hikelite 26Lightweight, carries all your gear, and your back doesn't get sweaty. Oh yea, it's also one of the most inexpensive packs you can get.

Check out the complete list here. ( Updated July 2024)

Hoyt Mountain Trail Maps

This loop takes a few trails:

Click Here To View

Use This Map:
View in CalTopo | PDF Map | GPX File

Elevation Profile

Hoyt Mountain Hike Elevation
The bad news is that the toughest climbing happens at the start. The good news is that once it's done, it's mostly downhill until the last graded uphill stretch back to the beginning.

3D Map

Hoyt Mountain Hike 3d Map
We're going to do the hike in a clockwise loop, climbing up Hoyt Mountain, high above Angeles Crest Highway, and then back around the north side of the mountain to the start.

Hike Brief

Clear Creek Camp Results
On the way back you might hear children's voices coming from Clear Creek Outdoor Education Center, which helps children create an emotional connection to learning and the outdoors. The center has been in continuous operation since 1925, and according to the data from the slide above, it's doing a great job.

Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions

There's some reports of washed out sections from the winter storms of 2022/23.  Users have reported that it's sketchy but doable on hands and knees. Maybe better to chose another hike.

Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 3
At the trailhead you'll see a memorial for Angeles Crest Highway, which truly is a an engineering marvel. Looming above are Josephine Peak and the jagged Strawberry Peak.
Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 4
We'll be coming back on the trail straight ahead (the World of Chaparral Trail), but to start, make the hard left and start hiking up the use trail.
Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 5
The trail is steep, and it's sometimes hard to follow, but it's there.
Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 6
You'll be climbing up above the road. Look for the main path.
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There are sections where people have cut the trail off and taken other routes. The "main" trail is generally always rocky and generally stays to the left in these beginning slopes.
Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 8
Eventually you'll gain the false summit.
Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 9
The views to the north - Fox Mountain and Condor Peak, open up. The vista is spectacular.
Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 10
After a short while on the false summit you'll see Hoyt Mountain in front of you. There's a level section along the ridge before we start the final climb.
Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 11
This last stretch is steep, but not as bad as the first part of the hike. The trail is small again, but a little easier to follow.
Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 12
There are some steep sections. The trail winds to the right as it approaches the summit.
Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 13
And here you are, at the big flat "summit" area of Hoyt Mountain. There are several groups of boulders but no benchmark.
Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 16
The first group of boulders sometimes has a small summit register, but on the day I shot this, it was MIA.
Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 14
To the east, the radio tower-covered peak of Mt Lukens dominates the skyline.
Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 17
Hike to the other side of the flat summit area.
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And you'll soon see the ridge heading down. Follow the trail, which you can easily see from the top, down. We're not climbing the bigger peak in front, Peak 4253.
Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 19
There are some great views of downtown LA on the descent.
Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 20
I also saw a fire hose. This section of trail is marked on maps as a firebreak, even though it's not very wide. It was also burned in the 2009 Station Fire, and you can still see some evidence of it along the hike today.
Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 21
There's a small bump to climb as you head down the ridge.
Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 22
As you descend you'll eventually see the power lines at the saddle. That's where we're going.
Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 23
More great views north as we descend, with Condor Peak (5443 ft) in the distance.
Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 24
At the saddle, make the hard right.
Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 25
And go past the power line tower.
Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 26
And now you're on a proper single-track trail, the Hoyt Mountain Trail.
Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 27
Soon the trail gets rocky. This route was blasted out of the cliff in 1925 by Socal Edison to create a path for the original power lines (not the large ones here today).
Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 28
The trail winds along the cliffside.
Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 29
You'll notice these old posts along the trail. The trail is also known as the Telephone Trail. Perhaps these poles carried a telephone line along the old road. If you know the history here, please contact me.
Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 30
The views continue to be epic along the north side of Hoyt Mountain.
Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 31
And then the trail twists around and you'll start to get views back toward Josephine Peak.
Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 32
Off to your left is the Clear Creek Outdoor Education Center. Sometimes when I hike here I can hear kids cheering and laughing, and it's great.
Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 33
You'll have a nice gradual downhill, with Clear Creek down to the left.
Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 34
Towards the bottom of the trail, look for a turnoff to the right and start the climb back to Georges Gap.
Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 35
To start the trail is steep.
Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 36
And then levels out and offers nice views of Clear Creek below.
Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 37
Soon you'll see the Nature's Canteen Trail joining in from the left. Continue right.
Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 38
And you'll see a series of trail signs, one for Hoyt Mountain Trail, the other for World of Chaparral, which we're taking by going straight.
Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 39
We'll climb a series of switchbacks on the World of Chaparral Trail, where which carves a path through the chaparral.

The definition of chaparral is "a thicket of dwarf evergreen oaks; broadly : a dense impenetrable thicket of shrubs or dwarf trees."

Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 40
Towards the top of the switchbacks you'll start to hear the traffic noise again.
Hoyt Mountain Hike Directions 41
And then here you are, back where you started!

Need More Info?

This Guide Was Written by Cris Hazzard

Cris Hazzard 4 Mile Trail Yosemite
Hi, I'm Cris Hazzard, aka Hiking Guy, a professional outdoors guide, hiking expert, and author based in Southern California. I created this website to share all the great hikes I do with everyone else out there. This site is different because it gives detailed directions that even the beginning hiker can follow. I also share what hiking gear works and doesn't so you don't waste money. I don't do sponsored or promoted content; I share only the gear recommendations, hikes, and tips that I would with my family and friends. If you like the website and YouTube channel, please support these free guides (I couldn't do it without folks like you!). You can stay up to date with my new guides by following me on YouTube, Instagram, or by subscribing to my monthly newsletter.