I'd like to backpack for one night in the San Gabriel Mtns/Angeles NF during Thanksgiving weekend.
What are my options considering these factors:
1. Less than 15 miles RT over 2 days.
2. Water availability this time of year.
3. Backcountry camp located at lower altitude so that overnight temps are not below freezing.
4. Good expansive views.. i do not want to be hiking in the woods all the time with no views at all.
Lower altitude + water + views is a tricky combination.
With your mileage maybe hike into Mount Lowe Camp? I don't think there's water though. But there's at least a half dozen loops you could do either coming up from Pasadena (Sam Merrill goes up there) or going up from the other side -- one of the starting points like Red Box or one of the trailheads up the road to Mount Wilson. There's some views on both of those, but obviously on the Pasadena side your views are mostly city. But there's literally a million trails that will take you there (Henniger? Chantry? Mount Wilson Toll Road? All that stuff connects somewhere....)
Isn't there a camp just on the other side of the Bridge to Nowhere? (Is it a real camp or just where the gold panners live?). That's pretty low, plenty of water, within your mileage, and your pretty much never hiking in the woods.
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