I forgot to mention something else the Angeles National Forest folks told me about the Colby Canyon Trail, which goes to Strawberry Peak and Josephine Peak and is still closed after the 2009 Station Fire — new seasonal “frog” restrictions will be taking effect after Colby Canyon reopens, hopefully this summer.
The restrictions are going to involve rerouting the trail around mountain yellow-legged frog habitat for part of the year, similar to the rerouting near Mt. Williamson that I wrote about in November. To recap: the frog is endangered in Southern California, and believe it or not, there’s enough riparian habitat for them that intersects with hiking trails in the San Gabriels, hence the trail rerouting.
There wasn’t alot of detail yet about the Colby Canyon restrictions, which will occur in the summer. For those of you who think that puts the kibosh on any hiking there — given that in years when it actually rains and snows, the trail would be covered in snow — that’s not really true. Strawberry Peak is indeed impressive, at 6,164 feet, but it gets only an occasional dusting of snow, so is accessible almost year-round. So that frog restriction shouldn’t put too much of a damper on your hiking. Once the trail actually opens again. If it ever does. Stay posted for more info. And hoppy hiking.
Photo credit: U.S. Geological Survey, Department of the Interior/USGS
U.S. Geological Survey/photo by Adam Backlin