Located among the San Gabriel Mountains in Los Angeles County, California, Mount Baldy is the one of the highest peaks in the area and is also known as Mount San Antonio. The mountain was originally named after Saint Anthony of Padua, a Portuguese priest, but was given the name 'Baldy' in reference to the surrounding Baldy Bowl area. The official name is still Mount San Antonio, but Los Angeles residents and most people visiting the area know it as Mt Baldy.
Mt Baldy is visible on clear days from the city of Los Angeles and is one of the city's most impressive natural landmarks. It has a pyramid shaped peak and can be climbed by various trails on almost all sides. Mt Baldy also refers to an unincorporated community, once known as Camp Baldy, at the base of the mountain itself. San Antonio Creek flows through this area, which is contained within the Angeles National Forest and is home to a post office and school, as well as offering access to the nearby Mt Baldy Ski Lifts, also known simply as the Baldy ski resort.
Mt Baldy is home to various plants, including rare wildflower species, as well as animals like chipmunks, bighorn sheep, black bears, and more. Climbing, hiking, cycling, and hunting are some of the recreational activities that can be enjoyed around and upon Mt Baldy, as well as skiing, which is very popular at the Baldy ski resort, which has 26 runs in total, offering a mixture of beginner, intermediate, and advanced trails, with the majority of the runs being best suited to experienced and skilled skiers.
Elevation of Mt Baldy
Elevation is a key term when talking about any mountain and it's vital to not confuse elevation with prominence. The prominence of a mountain tells us how tall it is from its base to it summit, whereas the elevation of a mountain is a measurement of its height in relation to sea level. The prominence of Mt Baldy is 6,224 feet (1,897 m), whereas the elevation of Mt Baldy is 10,064 feet (3,068 m). It's not the highest mountain in the state of California but is the highest elevation point in Los Angeles County.
Nearby locations like the unincorporated community of Mt Baldy and the Baldy Ski Resort also have high elevations. The elevation of the Mt Baldy unincorporated community is 4,193 feet (1,278 m). The Mt Baldy Ski Resort has a base elevation of 6,500 feet (2,000 m) and a top elevation of 8,600 feet (2,600 m). The nearby city of Los Angeles has an average elevation of around 285 feet (87 m), but the city has very different elevations at various points. Its highest point is Mt Lukens, which has an elevation of 5,075 feet (1,547 m). Meanwhile, the lowest point in Los Angeles is the Pacific Ocean itself, which is at sea level.
The mean elevation in the state of California is 2,900 feet (880 m), making it the 11th highest state overall. Mt Baldy's elevation is therefore much higher than the state average. The highest point in California is Mount Whitney, which has an elevation of 14,505 feet (4,421 m), while the lowest point is Badwater Basin, found in Death Valley, which has an elevation of 279 feet (85 m) below sea level. Other major California cities include San Francisco, which has an elevation of 52 feet (16 m), San Diego, which has an elevation of 62 feet (19 m), and the capital of Sacramento, which has an elevation of 30 feet (9 m).
Climate and Things to Do at Mt Baldy
Mt Baldy’s climate is heavily influenced by its elevation. As altitude rises, the air cools and temperatures get lower, so the area around Mt Baldy sees a lot of snow and very low temperatures for large parts of the year. The unincorporated community of Mt Baldy often has temperatures below freezing point through the winter months from November through to March. Over 40 inches of snow fall in this community each year, and much more snow can fall around the mountain all year long.
There are several hiking trails leading to the top of Mt Baldy, with one of the routes even featuring a ski lift to make the ascent much easier. For mountaineers looking for more of a challenge, some routes may require the use of more advanced climbing gear and techniques. Skiing is also popular around Mt Baldy, as well as hikes through the surrounding forests and wilderness. The mountain is also conveniently located a short drive away from Los Angeles, one of the biggest cities in the world.