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Chilao Visitor’s Center to Mt. Hillyer, looping back via Silver Moccasin trail

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Chilao Visitor’s Center to Mt. Hillyer, looping back via Silver Moccasin trail

Saturday August 6, 2022 – Hike from the Chilao Visitors Center to Mt. Hillyer (6,200′) and back by the Silver Mocassin Trail
Start Hike: Meet at Chilao Visitor’s Center (Trailhead) at 7:45AM, details below.

Distance: 7.3 miles, Round trip – Lollipop style loop hike
Gain: ~ 1,234′

Rating: Moderate + (i.e. not one for Beginners, you need to be in good general condition to enjoy this hike).

This hike has some really nice views and being at a higher elevation it should be cooler. We start the hike at the Chilao Visitor Center parking lot, a short distance from the trail head on part of the Silver Moccasin Trail surrounded by a pine and cedar forest.

At Horse Flats fork we turn left, passing the Horse Flats campground before climbing on a well traveled trail up a gentle slope and a few switchbacks to reach the top of Mt. Hillyer. A century ago this was bandido country (the notorious Tiburcio Vasquez and his gang of horse thieves utilized Chilao and Horse Flats when they were not hanging out at Vasquez rocks, near Acton).

The great boulders we will pass served as a fortress for the bandits and today these same boulders serve as a great location for rock climbers and make for some very cool photos.

From the round top of Mt. Hillyer (6,200′), we will be rewarded with nice views that the bandits probably used to their advantage. We will follow the ridge NE to the Rosenita Saddle trailhead. Here we turn right on a paved road and follow it for a bit, turning off back towards the Horse Flats campground. At the back of the campsite we will hook-up with the Silver Moccasin Trail again heading back to the Chilao Visitor center.

Note: The highway to the trailhead is twisty after passing Upper Tujunga on Hwy 2. If you are susceptible to carsickness, plan accordingly.

Directions to Chilao Visitor Center (34.326805, -118.006125) :
Via 14 FWY North:
Take 14 FWY North to Exit 30 for Angeles Forest Hwy, Stay on Angeles Forest HWY N4 for 16 miles to Upper Big Tujunga, sharp turn to the left. Head 9 miles on Upper Big T all the way to the intersection with 2 Angeles Crest Hwy. Turn left (East) and follow 2 Hwy for 8 miles, making a left turn into the Chilao Visitor Center (it’s just past the parking lot for Devils Canyon trail head).

Alternative Route, Via the 210 FWY:
Exit at Angeles Crest HWY 2 NORTH (Exit #20). Follow the 2 towards the mountains for ~ 27 miles, making a left turn into the Chilao Visitor Center (it is just past the parking lot for Devils Canyon trail head).

Meet your Leader: At the Chilao Visitor Center (34.326805, -118.006125)
Park in the Visitor’s Center parking lot at ~ 7:45AM. We will leave the lot to depart up the trail at 8:00AM SHARP.

Bring: Lots of liquids for hydrating (2L water + 1L Electrolytes like Gatorade), a hat, sunscreen, a snack and hiking poles if you have them. Good shoes with tread are a must.

Adventure Pass: Yes, 1/car. Available at Acton or any other Ranger Station, the Little Tujunga Ranger station, REI Nothridge, Big 5 Sporting Goods ($5 a day/ $30 a year).

Dogs: OK, if on a leash and well-behaved with other dogs / people carrying poles. If you bring your dog, please drive yourself.

Leader: Nancy H

August 06 2022


Date: August 6
Time: 8:00 am - 12:30 pm
Hiking Group:
RSVP: Visit Meetup Website


Chilao Visitor Center

1 Moccasin Trail
Palmdale, CA 93550 US

+ Google Map


Santa Clarita Community Hiking Club
Website: Visit Organizer Website


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Trail statistics are approximate. For safety purposes always assume they are underestimated. But don’t be disappointed if they are overestimated. Bring more water and snacks than you think you’ll need.

Trail descriptions are based on previous hikes. Current conditions are unknown until arrival. Expect the unexpected and plan accordingly.

The Organizers and members of Hiking With Dean are not professional leaders, guides, or mountaineers. The function of the member or organizer is only to organize the trip. Each person who shows up for a trip/meetup (and their guest or guests) is responsible for his or her own safety. By attending a hike, or any other event organized by this group, you are acknowledging that you and any guests that you bring are aware of the risks, dangers and hazards associated with the activity and freely accept and fully assume all such risks, dangers and hazards, and further agree to release and discharge the Organizers, Members of the Hiking With Dean Meetup Group from and against any and all liability arising from your participation in the group activities per our ASSUMPTION OF RISK AND LIABILITY WAIVER and Section 6.2 of the Terms of Service.