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dima

Triangular peak markers in the San Gabriels

Some peaks in the San Gabriels have metal signs on them with some sort of code written on an inverted triangle, like this W15 on top of Iron Mountain:



There's a W5 on top of Lookout Mountain, and I've seen a number of others I can't recall right now. Does anybody know what those signify? Is there a list?
Sean

They are witness posts. They are used to locate benchmarks. Witness posts come in different shapes and sizes. It appears the two you mentioned were used by survey teams in the '20s and '30s.
dima

Sean wrote:
They are witness posts. They are used to locate benchmarks


Oh that's interesting. So they live next to the USGS markers in the ground? I feel like I've seen at least one markerless one before: Iron Mt south ridge, off to the side of the trail. Wonder what that one was for, then. Will try to find it again next time I'm up there.
Sean

Well sometimes the marks are long gone or buried, so don't kill yourself looking for them.
dima

So I found another of these yesterday, and now I want to have a full list. The ones I know of:

- W1: junction of the ridge North of Lookout mountain and the one carrying Bear Canyon Trail to Baldy
- W5: Lookout Mt
- W15: top of Iron Mt
- 26: Burro Peak (or so says Sean)
- 6: Sunset Peak (or so says tekewin)
- [blank]: top of ridge near the Pallett Benchmark
- [blank]: somewhere on Iron's South ridge, just West of the trail. I didn't make a note of exactly where I found it.
- G2B: above Adams Falls

I'm pretty sure I saw one on the firebreak below Clamshell Peak, but it was a while back. What others do people know of?
Uncle Rico

Quote:
I'm pretty sure I saw one on the firebreak below Clamshell Peak, but it was a while back. What others do people know of?


There's one on the south edge of the summit of Iron #3.

Wow. Don't know why that image is so big. Sorry.
Sean

The ones with numbers on them interest me the most. There are probably many dozens without numbers, mostly found on old firebreaks. I'm not sure if they were witness posts for benchmarks or not.
JeffH

Marker V 12 on top of Stoddard Peak. This was in Dec 2014 so I don't know if it's still there.


HikeUp

There is one on the "typical" route to Rattlesnake...I think at the 4080'+ point.

Huge photo bomb (mine's bigger than yours Rico Smile )...

12 Metal posts at bump ~4100' by HikeUp_Pasadena, on Flickr
Sean

I have documented at least 24 witness posts with triangular plates throughout the Gabes.
I'll list them in two groups by Tom Harrison map.
For the more obscure ones I won't give exact locations on the forum.
If you want pics or more precise location info, message me privately.

Front Country

Blank, near Brown Mtn
Probably blank, near Mt. Lukens
Blank, near Mt. Muir
Blank, near Yale Peak
Blank, near Mt. Emma
Blank, near Roundtop

High Country

Blank, near Clamshell Peak
Probably blank, Etiwanda Peak
45, near Rattlesnake Peak
39, Rattlesnake Peak
W15, Iron Mountain
2-?, Winston Ridge
W 5, Lookout Mountain
FBH1 F21, Circle Mountain
Blank, near Ralston Peak
Blank, Ralston Peak
26, Burro Peak
Blank with graffiti, Chalk Peak
Blank, Lower PVR
Blank, Upper PVR
6, Sunset Peak
V 12, Stoddard Peak
Blank, near Bare Mountain
Another blank, near Bare Mountain
Sean

One more thing about these metal posts: perhaps the triangular plate is intended to associate them with triangulation survey stations. Some of these stations were permanent, like the one on Lookout. While others may have been temporary, like those along firebreaks with apparently no history of a benchmark in the vicinity. That's just a guess though.
dima

That is a great list, Sean! I don't see any obvious pattern in the codes, but it looks like the 3 known Ws are all in the same rough area. How do you feel about visiting Bighorn Ridge? Smile
Sean

dima wrote:
How do you feel about visiting Bighorn Ridge? Smile


I wouldn't go up it looking for posts. While the old Highline Trail crossed the lower part of the ridge, I can't find evidence of a trail or firebreak going up it. Nor can I find a history of any benchmark along the ridge.

Still, I'm looking at Big Horn for other reasons. Email me.
Sean

Found one more from a pic I took on Throop in Sep. 2011. Something happened to the letters, but it looks like maybe W 28.



David R

On Bighorn Ridge there is a post, see below from the Ze write-up from 2009.

There is an old bent sign labeled "W12" at Pt. 6388, presumably a relic from the days when a trail ran up the ridge.

http://sangabrielmnts.myfreeforum.org/sutra14354.php#14354
JeffH

Claremont Hills Wilderness Park, I walked around there this morning since my sister is visiting from chilly Portland.
V79 on the marker, it's just before the 2.5 mile marker on the Burbank Canyon side. Up above the road and below the use trail on the ridge, I couldn't get a good angle for a clear picture.


Shot of the triangle.



Where it is on the 'trail'.
RichardK

Triangle

Here is the triangle showing the number:

Cyberbear

Pre attack markers

Similar yellow angle iron post with inverted steel triangle were used on the San Bernardino National Forest. The Forest was divided into blocks A-Z, AA-ZZ. Each block had a hard copy folder with map showing numbers. Most peaks were shown with the ridges for dozer fire breaks. Water sources, hellispots, & Fire Camps. Dozer lines were assessed for accessibility to a dozer and estimates were made on time to construct a line. It would be my guess that the Angeles National Forest had the same.

This was done before GPS, Computers, Cell Phones.
HikeUp

Re: Pre attack markers

Cyberbear wrote:
Similar yellow angle iron post with inverted steel triangle were used on the San Bernardino National Forest. The Forest was divided into blocks A-Z, AA-ZZ. Each block had a hard copy folder with map showing numbers. Most peaks were shown with the ridges for dozer fire breaks. Water sources, hellispots, & Fire Camps. Dozer lines were assessed for accessibility to a dozer and estimates were made on time to construct a line. It would be my guess that the Angeles National Forest had the same.

This was done before GPS, Computers, Cell Phones.

Interesting.
dima

Two more numberless markers found today:

1. On the ridge between Tom Sloane Saddle and Brown Mountain.
2. At red box saddle. Next to the parking lot.
Sean

Re: Pre attack markers

Cyberbear wrote:
Similar yellow angle iron post with inverted steel triangle were used on the San Bernardino National Forest. The Forest was divided into blocks A-Z, AA-ZZ. Each block had a hard copy folder with map showing numbers. Most peaks were shown with the ridges for dozer fire breaks. Water sources, hellispots, & Fire Camps. Dozer lines were assessed for accessibility to a dozer and estimates were made on time to construct a line. It would be my guess that the Angeles National Forest had the same.

This was done before GPS, Computers, Cell Phones.


"Pre-attack markers"? Is that the official name for them? Any public resources available with info about them? Thanks.
Sean

Found alongside the Mt. Baldy Road.

Sean

Found a couple more yesterday:


(Dora BM 4547', Glendora Ridge)


(Near entrance to Tanbark Road, Glendora Ridge)
Sean

This one was found on Lower Lytle Creek Ridge near Keen BM. You can see in the close-up that there used to be some letters and numbers, but they are unreadable now.



dima

These aren't triangular, but they're the same sort of thing. The far end of Ontario ridge has at least two markers:

VH16 (Turtle's Beak):




VH8(somewhere about point 7792)
Slowest_Hiker

Three for the price of one at Cogswell Dam!

DSC00476 by moore91024, on Flickr
Slowest_Hiker

Plus one along Blue Ridge Rd. between Inspiration Point and Blue Ridge CG.

DSC00394 by moore91024, on Flickr
Sean

JeffH wrote:
Claremont Hills Wilderness Park, I walked around there this morning since my sister is visiting from chilly Portland.
V79 on the marker, it's just before the 2.5 mile marker on the Burbank Canyon side. Up above the road and below the use trail on the ridge, I couldn't get a good angle for a clear picture.




It's probably U 79, because I found U 77 further up the ridge yesterday.

Sean

Barley Flats had some triangular signs near the entrance gate.





And then there was the one at Thorn BM.

Uncle Rico

Here's the marker along Winston Ridge near Pt. 6850



Sean

Found three more blank triangles along the Mt. Lukens Road.


Near Bee Flat


At junction with Earl Canyon Mtwy


On Peak 4223 (Mt. Pickens)
Sean

I unearthed one on Cole Point and set it upright on the summit.



JeffH

The marker is missing from Sunset Peak now, I walked up there today. Also gone is the rock pile that housed a summit register with an Eispiraten sticker. Looks like the rocks were moved to create a 8-inch tall windbreak for a tent a few yards to the west of the summit.



This was December 2015



As of today. Quite a few areas were smoothed over as if they had been dug recently.
JeffH

I saw a couple more this weekend on my trek up Potato Mountain.



This is on the Palmer Canyon Motorway about a mile from Claremont Hills Wilderness Park.



Almost at the summit of Potato. It looks like FV was written on there but nothing official.
Sean

These two are near the East Fork parking lot.



And this one is off Hwy 39 between the two dams.

dima

Not the San Gabriels, but close enough. Blank triangle on the SW ridge of Arrowhead Peak:



Don't remember the elevation; above 3000ft probably.
Sean

Found near Azusa River Wilderness Park.

Sean

Noticed this one along the trail in the Hunter's Ridge development in Fontana. No numbers. Almost completely concealed by brush.

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