Section D

blue ridge near wrightwood

By: Andrew Raffertt
March 19th, 2014

I was recently hiking from El cajon pass to hwy 2 near wrightwood. Reached guffy campground snow was moderate though trail to guffy spring was covered in snow an very hard to get to almost couldnt get back to campground. Ice an snow cover the trail from guffy to blue ridge. Fell 40ft into trees half a mile away from blue ridge camp ground. ANDREW (mule) Rafferty 3/16/2014

Collapsing trail tread near North Fork RS

By: Jack H
March 17th, 2014

Ten and a half inches of rain fell on the area around North Fork Ranger Station (mile 436) in a single day in early March. This has caused unstable, collapsing trail tread in the area (especially where the trail was previously affected by fire). Equestrians are advised that the PCT tread may be unstable. Equestrians are advised to detour from North Fork Ranger Station to Soledad Canyon Road by riding the Santa Clara Divide Road to Indian Canyon Road to Soledad Canyon Road.

Station Burn/Poodle-Dog Bush Update Feb.-Mar., 2014

By: Daytripper
March 12th, 2014

Feb. 2, 2014: Poodle-dog bush easily avoidable Miles 403 – 411. Poodle-dog bush thicker, but mostly avoidable at Miles 411-413 on slopes of Mount Pacifico. Several trees across trail and tread in poor shape miles 412-413. No issues with road detour beginning at mile 413 to Mill Creek Summit (mile 418.8).
Mar. 8-9, 2014: Mount Gleason Road Detour (mile 419 – 430.6) from Mill Creek Summit to Messenger Flat has frequent heavy truck traffic to support So Cal Edison high voltage power line/tower replacement project crossing PCT at ~425.75 and Mount Gleason Road Detour in vicinity of LA County Fire Camp 16 ruins. Trail from Messenger Flat (mile 430.6) to North Fork Ranger Station (mile 436.3) in poor condition with eroded tread, encroaching brush, downed trees. Trail tread eroded in various places between North Fork Ranger Station and Mattox Canyon (440.2).

Baden-Powell water/snow conditions

By: Daytripper
October 28th, 2013

October 22-23. Trail from Inspiration Point (1st crossing Highway 2, mile 369.5) to Islip Saddle (3rd crossing Highway 2 mile 386.2) in very good shape. Thin patches of snow/ice on north facing slopes above 7500′ but trail mostly dry. Only a few short patches of ice on trail. Multiple hikers reaching Baden-Powell summit. Water faucet at Grassy Hollow (mile 370.4) on (per report from through hiker Derrick). Little Jimmy Spring (384.1) flowing well, water in trough clear.

Bouquet Canyon to Mill Creek Summit PCT 4/3-6/13

By: White Hatter (Tom Weaver)
April 8th, 2013

I just got back from a 4-day PCT backpack trip southbound from Bouquet Canyon to Mill Creek Summit. I sent a separate report on water conditions, but wanted to report here on the Poddle Dog Bush situation in Northern Section D.

Hiking south the Poddle Dog Bush starts a mile south of Maddox Canyon at about mile 439. There is also some poison oak, but both are easily avoidable until just south of the North Fork Ranger Station at mile 436.3. Beyond that, it becomes increasing difficult to avoid. I thought I just barely had, but I later noticed a couple of small patches of rash, so maybe not. It looks like the Poddle Dog Bush is growing fast, so I suspect that this section will soon become “impassable.”

I decided to take the next fire road I came to at mile 433.5 and followed it roughly parallel to the PCT all the way to Mill Creek Summit at mile 418.7. I would have taken fire roads all the way from North Fork Ranger Station if I had known how bad the Poddle Dog Bush was going to be. As it was, it densely lined the fire roads and even arched 3-4′ into them in places!

Other than that, the trail was in good shape, the wild flowers blooming, and the temperatures still fairly mild.

Station Fire burn area

March 24th, 2013

The PCT is open through the Station Fire burn area. The fire burned across the trail in 2009 and PCTA has done substantial repair work since then.

The portion of the trail that was still recently closed between Pacifico Mtn. trailhead and Mill Creek Summit is open again. The Santa Clara Divide Road (3N17) remains closed to vehicular traffic.

Be aware of poodle-dog bush while traveling through the Station Fire burn. This irritant has grown up after the fire and covers portions of the trail.

Poodle-Dog Bush extreme hazard

By: Jack Haskel
January 18th, 2013

Be aware of the existence of Poodle-Dog Bush on the trail. Some people are extremely allergic to it. Read the full warning, watch a video and see an alternate map on our blog.

Various reports from 2012 hikers have bad Poodle-Dog Bush on the PCT starting around either mile 419 or 421 or 425 and extending through Messenger Flat at mile 430.6. To avoid Poodle-Dog Bush, some hikers are detouring off the PCT either at the Mill Creek Ranger Station [mile 418.8] or Mount Gleason Rd [mile 421.4] or the dirt road at mile 425.1 [follow the dirt road 4/10 mile S to Mount Gleason Rd] and then following Mount Gleason Rd to Messenger Flat.

April 4, 2012

The frog closue and reroute starting at Islip Saddle is not passable by stock, definitely not pack stock so avoid this area and also the trail from Mill Creek Summit to North Fork station is not passable with stock, this area you can follow the dirt road from Mill Creek to North Fork