Mount Lukens trail. I rode this on March 29th 2000 - I passed 2 solitary hikers and no other bikers, and it was about 65oF at the bottom (2160ft) and more like 40oF towards the top (5074 ft).
This was a complete bitch of a ride. I'd done it once before, but I'd forgotten the one overriding miserable factor about it - the trail is really bumpy - loose gravel and rocks all over the place. I don't think they can use this trail for access to the transmitter towers any more - there's another way up from the 2 (Angeles Crest Highway) which is in better shape.
|You start off from Haines Canyon Av which is north of Day St, accessable via the Honolulu exit of the 210 Foothill Freeway. Thomas Guide® ref pg 504 B3. You can park on the street at the top end, or go through the gate and park next to the flood control dam. This is the view from where I parked, looking up. It was so misty on the day I rode it, you couldn't see the top, which was shrouded in clouds.|
|Here's the flood control basin which you pass as you set off. It's actually got water in it after the rainy season, complete with ducks .|
|Almost as soon as you get going, you're assaulted with loose gravelly surface which makes for hard work. I figure the more noise your tires are making as they crunch through the surface, the less energy is left over for actually getting you up. It also seems that the faster you go, the less the uneveness slows you down - if you have the energy....|
|At least when you're half way up you can look down and see the trail you were on, seemingly miles below|
|Eventually I recognized I was near the top, and there looming in the mist was the cluster of transmission towers at the very top.|
|Now here was a nice surpise...I met a friendly engineer called Al who was installing equipment in one of the rooms and he showed me around - explaining it was mostly "relay" equipment for walkie-talkies and for police and oil company use. Here's Al and his truck - needs big tires to get up the bumpy tracks. I think he and I both enjoyed getting away from the millions of people at the bottom of the mountain!|
|This is a view inside the equipment room. When you see what's inside, you realize that many thousands of lonely manhours have been spent on the top of these mountains installing all this equipment. These are Motorola 900Mhz repeaters - this is exciting stuff to engineers, let me tell you, and I was fascinated.....the way down was fast, furious and bumpy. It's amazing how it warms up as you descend.|
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