On Sunday, August 7, I summited Mt. Wilson from the newly opened Rock of Ages TH. Make sure you take PLENTY of insect repellent. The biting black flies and mosquitoes up there were horrible.
This is just a photographic journey up the Rock of Ages trail to the Rock of Ages saddle below Wilson Peak that I wanted to add for visual references. Unfortunately, I only have a partial gpx file as my batteries died and apparently the change of batteries I had were not new batteries. The rest of the trail to the RoA saddle is easy to follow from where the track ends, though. The trail is not difficult to follow from start to finish (even in the dark).
Wilson Peak from Silver Pick Basin
Rock of Ages Trailhead
Sign on first gate
Second gate not too far down the road
Intersection with the Wilson Mesa Trail near the second gate
The first switchback is a bit of a walk up the road
Switchback to the right and continue up the road
Looking up the road
Switchback to the left and continue on
Switchback to the right and continue up the road
Another shot of the road
Emerge from the trees and the road becomes rocky. Continue to walk in a southerly direction.
Further up the road, intersect with the Elk Creek Trail.
While facing the Elk Creek Trail, turn to your left and look at the mountain above you. You'll soon be on the other side of this mountain.
A short distance from the Elk Creek Trail intersection, switchback to the left and walk the road in a northerly direction.
After the last switchback, you will be walking in a northerly direction for awhile.
The road eventually looks like it ends, but continue on a dirt trail.
Re-enter some trees and continue to the north
The dirt trail eventually ends and you'll see a sign for the RoA Trail facing the opposite direction. Here, you will walk onto another road.
When on the road, make a note of this log to your right. Do not cross this log on your way down. It's a spur road that goes nowhere.
On the road, continue in a northerly direction and you'll see a sign for RoA trail on your right. Continue northward.
Reach a switchback to the right. This is on a ridge that divides the Elk Creek and Big Bear Creek drainages. Continue to follow the road southward.
Dirt eventually turns to rock and you lose a little bit of elevation. Wilson Peak also comes into view as you continue southward.
Reach a fork in the road. The left fork goes onto private property. The right fork continues on the RoA trail.
Looking up toward Rock of Ages saddle.
A look at the road ahead. Continue up into the basin.
Another look at the road. The actual trail continues on the lower road to the left, not the upper road on the right.
A look down into the Big Bear Creek drainage.
Pass this Private Property sign and continue to follow the road.
Pass another private property sign to your left and continue on.
Lots of road walking.
Pass another private property sign marking the end of the private property and continue on.
Eventually, you will come to a sign on the right. The trail leaves the road and continues upward briefly in a southwesterly direction.
A look at the sign and the trail as it leaves the road.
Switchback at this wooden post. Here, you will see the Rock House off in the distance.
The Rock House.
Follow the road in a southeasterly direction toward the grassy area in this photo.
Another look at the rock house.
Once you reach this grassy area, the trail fades, but continue toward the slope in this photo in a southeasterly direction.
At the time of this report, there was a short section of snow to cross.
On the other side of the slope, turn right and follow the road.
Follow some scattered cairns.
This section of road eventually ends and you'll see a faint trail exiting up to the right.
Follow this faint trail upward.
At the top of the short upclimb section in the previous photo, turn right and continue on the trail.
Continue on the trail.
In the days/weeks following this report, make a note of this snow field to your left on the trail. Look for a faint trail immediately to the left of it heading upward. The actual trail continues off to the northwest, but it switchbacks and crosses a 50-60 ft. section of the snow higher up. The snow is not safe to cross when it is firm in the morning hours. A slip here would deliver you back on the trail about 30 feet below and you wouldn't necessarily stop there....
The switchback past the snow field mentioned in the previous photo.
The snow field. I went ahead and carefully walked across it to chop in some steps on my way back to the trailhead.
Past the last switchback, the trail becomes smaller and more ledgy as you begin your approach to the Rock of Ages saddle.
Looking back down into Silver Pick Basin.
Final approach to the Rock of Ages saddle
I also wanted to say "Congratulations!" to Jodi (jlohara) for summiting Mt. Wilson. She was pretty nervous about the summit ridge and the crux, but she pushed past her fear and summited anyway. Jodi, I know you were pushed outside your comfort zone at times, but I hope you felt safe climbing with me.