PACIFIC CREST TRAIL, SHARPLESS RANCH ROAD TO
SWARTHOUT CANYON ROAD, SAN GABRIEL MTS

AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2013 PAGE ONE
Photographs by Michael Charters




Swarthout Canyon was named for a group of Mormon settlers who arrived in this area in the late 1840's, George Washington Swarthout (?-1872) and his brothers Nathan and Truman. Swarthout Canyon Road branches off from Lone Pine Canyon Road about two miles from SR-138. I actually did this segment of the Pacific Crest Trail on three separate days. The first day I only got about 3/4 of a mile before being driven off by thick black clouds and an impending thunderstorm. The second day I hiked up about 2-1/2 miles but it was a very hot day. And on the third day I drove up Sharpless Ranch Road (3N29) to the junction of the trail and hiked down about 1-3/4 miles to where I had ended the time before. So this section of the trail is about 4-1/4 miles long and ascends from 3500' to 5200' through a fairly dense oak, chamise, ceanothus and manzanita chaparral more or less along Lytle Creek Ridge. Everything is pretty dry now, and there is very little in bloom with just one notable exception, Parish's goldenbush. It is not always easy to tell what things are in the condition they are in now, but that is part of the point of continuing to study them when they are dried up. So the photo galleries from now until next spring will include a lot of pictures of what things look like in the off season. The list of species for this segment of the PCT is here and includes taxa observed by RT and Shaun Hawke when they hiked this section in April. The pictures in this gallery were taken on 8/26/13, 9/12/13 and 9/19/13. An asterisk next to the common name indicates a non-native species, and the symbol ^ is for a species I had never previously encountered.


   
Giant stipa
Stipa coronata
Poaceae


 
 
Hollyleaf redberry
Rhamnus ilicifolia
Rhamnaceae

Tucker's oak
Quercus john-tuckeri
Fagaceae
 


 
 
 
Twiggy wreathplant, Tall stephanomeria
Stephanomeria virgata
Asteraceae
 
 



 
 
Bush senecio
Senecio flaccidus var. douglasii
Asteraceae

Wirelettuce
Stephanomeria exigua
Asteraceae
 


   
Desert straw
Stephanomeria pauciflora
Asteraceae
 
Red brome *
Bromus madritensis ssp. rubens
Poaceae


 
Cottonthorn
Tetradymia comosa
Asteraceae


 
Rock dudleya
Dudleya saxosa ssp. aloides
Crassulaceae
   
One-sided bluegrass
Poa secunda ssp. secunda
Poaceae
     


 
Sticky lessingia
Lessingia glandulifera var. glandulifera
Asteraceae



   
Birch-leaf mountain mahogany
Cercocarpus betuloides var. betuloides
Rosaceae

 
Short-joint beavertail cactus
Opuntia basilaris var. brachyclada
Cactaceae
 
Mormon metalmark
Apodemia mormo
Riodinidae



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