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Spring Hikes in Rubio Canyon

The Arroyos & Foothills Conservancy (AFC) is holding another round of docent-led hikes in Altadena's Rubio Canyon this spring. The canyon is the former home of the Mt. Lowe Railway – AFC finished a project to preserve 41 acres there in 2011. Docents will cover a range of topics, including local geology, local history, the mechanics of the railway, and historic trails.

For each hike, they strongly recommend hiking boots, long pants, a long-sleeved shirt, a hat, and water in a day pack or holster to keep your hands free. You may encounter rattlesnakes, tics, and poison oak. Dogs are not allowed because some sections of the trails are narrow. All hikers will be required to sign a waiver at the trailhead.

A brief hike schedule is below; click here for more information on each hike.

  • Sunday, March 25, 9 a.m.: Learn about the history of the Mt. Lowe Railway and Altadena’s early settlers with local historian Michele Zack. Hike is about a mile each way, and is demanding at points. Meet at the intersection of Pleasantridge Drive and Rubio Vista Drive in Altadena.
  • Saturday, March 31, 9 a.m.: Get acquainted with the mechanical workings of the Mt. Lowe Railway with John Harrigan, author of Mt. Lowe Power. Meet at the intersection of Pleasantridge Drive and Rubio Vista Drive in Altadena.
  • Saturday, April 7, 9 a.m.: Learn about Rubio Canyon’s geologic history and its seismic future with environmental geologist and rock hound John Wros. Hike is about a mile each way. Meet at E. Loma Alta Drive and Camp Huntington Road in Altadena.
  • Saturday, April 14, 9 a.m.: Learn about the history of the Mt. Lowe Railway with Dan Abendschein, editor of the Altadena Patch. Hike is about a mile each way, and is demanding at points. Meet at the intersection of Pleasantridge Drive and Rubio Vista Drive in Altadena.
  • Saturday, April 21, 9 a.m.: Hike a new Rubio Canyon trail loop with Paul Ayers, chief of Rubio Canyon’s trail crew. Hike is about 1.5 miles. Meet at 1101 E. Loma Alta Drive (just east of Camp Huntington Road) in Altadena.
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