Upper Eaton Canyon

Joined: February 12th, 2014, 9:35 am

July 31st, 2017, 6:15 am #1

This will be short and sweet.

I checked out the middle section of Eaton Canyon the last time, so today I returned to traverse the upper section. I started at Eaton Saddle, and walked the fire road, looking for a drop-in point. Initially, the drop into the head of Eaton Canyon is very steep. At the tunnel you can see the old trail: there's a sketchy-looking cut in the rock, and metal posts that presumably carried cables at some point. It's a looong way down, so I guess the tunnel was built as a less harrowing alternative. Not coincidentally, this isn't a good drop-in point.



Things look a bit more reasonable past the tunnel, and I dropped-in shortly after. As expected, this is very steep initially, but flattens out as all the little channels consolidate into the main stem of Eaton Canyon. It's pretty nice down there. I found very little human-detritus, aside from two road signs that fell from above and 11 (!) birthday balloons. Eventually the canyon gets some water.



Here there were some deer, countless water striders and countless ladybugs



The travel is relatively easy. There's only one waterfall, and there's an obvious bypass on the descender's left. Eventually I reached the Idlehour trail, which was my exit via Mt. Lowe. Lots of lizards on the ascent, and I disturbed this guy, who was coiled up into a neat pancake when I came up on him.



The canyon is nice! It was also hot out there. I saw one other hiker at Inspiration Point, and a handful of people at the tunnel.
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HikeUp
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Joined: September 28th, 2007, 3:21 am

July 31st, 2017, 3:05 pm #2

Thanks for the report. The only other account I've ever read about this section of the canyon is by Brennen and I never was sure whether it was just "hikable" or required canyoneering skills.
Hike up! The world's about to end. Flickr.
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Uncle Rico
Can Throw A Football Over Them Mountains
Uncle Rico
Can Throw A Football Over Them Mountains
Joined: March 21st, 2008, 1:48 am

August 1st, 2017, 2:22 pm #3

Very cool post dima. That's a seldom visited area it seems. The old trail that clings to the cliff face on side of Mueller Tunnel always looked pretty dang precarious to me. Traversing that before the tunnel was there must have been an intimidating experience. Lol
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Sean
Cucamonga Man
Sean
Cucamonga Man
Joined: July 27th, 2011, 6:32 pm

August 1st, 2017, 5:28 pm #4

I've thought about using that route to access the south side of Markham. Looks nice. The ladybugs are crazy this year.
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AW
Canyon Man
AW
Canyon Man
Joined: October 1st, 2007, 6:00 pm

August 2nd, 2017, 7:12 pm #5

Yup, Markham forests are way underrated. I plan on visiting again.
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HikeUp
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Joined: September 28th, 2007, 3:21 am

August 2nd, 2017, 8:00 pm #6

Is it feasible to exit back up to the drop in point (which is between the tunnel and markham saddle, right?)?
Hike up! The world's about to end. Flickr.
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Joined: February 12th, 2014, 9:35 am

August 2nd, 2017, 9:39 pm #7

HikeUp:56001 wrote:Is it feasible to exit back up to the drop in point (which is between the tunnel and markham saddle, right?)?
Yeah, feasible. It's steep, but not even remotely technical. The drop-in is where you say, getting a bit easier towards Markham.
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Girl Hiker
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Joined: April 4th, 2014, 1:46 pm

August 3rd, 2017, 1:15 pm #8

Thanks for the TR. Love the Lady Bug pics!!
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tekewin
Resident Trailcam Guy
tekewin
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Joined: April 11th, 2013, 11:07 pm

August 4th, 2017, 2:31 pm #9

Cool trip, Dima. I thought the upper canyon would have been more technical. Pretty though.
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