Ken Burton Loop is the perfect mountain biking trail built by mountain bikers in Los Angeles. It offers unmatched fun and challenges for advanced bikers.
The Ken Burton Loop is a 14.7-mile loop that you can ride after work or early morning weekends for a steamy workout. The trail was closed for many years but is now open to everyone. Although it was built by mountain bikers, the trail is frequented by other users like hikers. Therefore, you must observe good trail manners. The Ken Burton Loop trail is a difficult ride. It constitutes a fire road, a singletrack/doubletracks climb, and a descent.
The Ken Burton Loop is a successful Mount Wilson Bicycling Association (MWBA) project. The group built the mountain biking trail in honor of Ken Burton, a famous forestry firefighter.
The Ken Burton Loop trail has plenty of technical challenges for advanced riders. It has over 20 steep switchbacks to keep you on your toes. The first three switchbacks will give you a taste of what’s ahead.
The trail begins as an easy climb past a fire road, up a single/double-track trail, then down a dangerous cliff edge descent that falls onto an easy cruise on the Gabrielino trail. We only recommend this ride to advanced riders because of the trail’s remoteness and the possibility of severe injuries if you make a single wrong move.
The trail is super-rugged and exposed in many sections. Start your ride in Altadena at the parking lot at Windsor and Ventura. Ride north on the paved Gabrielino trail, then turn right when you reach the Fork. The right turn leads to the Fern Truck trail. Ride it until you reach the saddle, then turn left at Brown Mountain.
Ride the entire Brown Mountain trail to the end, then join the Ken Burton trail. The trail ends at its intersection with the Gabrielino trail. Before you get to the intersection, be mindful of the poison oak at the bottom of the canyon. Take a left turn and enjoy the gentle 4-mile cruise back to the parking lot.
Riding the Ken Burton Loop is a quasi-wilderness experience. You may get traffic noise in some sections, but it is a fantastic opportunity for getting lost in nature. Before you encounter the first switchback, you can stop at the Ken Burton Monument and take a few pictures as you brace yourself for the technical challenge ahead. The rugged landscape also offers a fantastic view.