Mendenhall Peak


By: Gabriele Rau

After climbing Bohna Peak the day before and staying in Arvin, we left there early, had breakfast at the truckstop in Frazier Park, drove via I-5 and 210 to Osborne Exit, then into Little Tujunga Canyon for 7 miles. At the ridge (road turns downhill) we parked, Forest Road 3N32 crosses here. The right side is locked by a gate. We started at 7:45 AM on the road. Soon another road turns left, stay right uphill. After a good 3 miles we came to the Power Lines, here the Burma Road comes up on the right. The Burma Road 3N37 continues on the left side downhill. Stay on the 3N32 to the right, there is another gate. Continue steady uphill. There were many flowers on the side of the road, also very healthy Poison Oak. But the flowers really surprised me. From there it is 2 miles more to the Mendenhall saddle, where we turned sharp right to a very old road, a broken gate is still there. This road is badly deteriorated, several spots are hard to pass because the road slipped off. But we made it to the peak, which is an abandoned Lookout site, messy. I left the Register Can on top of the bump South of the Lookout pad, this bump is the highest spot between 2 flat areas. We arrived at the summit at 10:45 AM, ate lunch and returned at 11 AM the same way. We were back at the cars at 1:45 PM, 6 h total round trip.

Specially in the morning it was very foggy, the view from the peak was nil. Later it cleared somewhat up. There is steep firebreak starting at the Power Lines leading to the peak, but because of the dense cloud cover we did not take this route. A good trip to lead in the spring, some difficult stops on the old Mendenhall Ridge Road, otherwise all road.

On the way home we stopped at the Wildlife Way station, but only on the 1. and 3. Sundays there are open for tours, so we looked around and left for home.

Flowers: Virgins Bower, Buckeye (white snowy candle-like flowers), Indian Paintbrush, Monkeyflowers, Larkspur, Yerba Santa, Sage, Golden Yarrow, Farewell-to-Spring (Clarkia), Wooley Blue Curls, Golden Ear Drops, Yellow Chaenactis, Blue Headed Gilia, Rock Cress, Woodland Star, and others I forgot.

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