Lost Lake

A short Day Trip from Lake Arrowhead along CA138 to Cajun Junction and then to Lost Lake on Swarthout Canyon Road.

CA138 past Little Horsethief Canyon is an incongruous drive – it quickly morphs into a rural farming scene for a five kilometre run. Through the Cajon Pass and across the Mojave Freeway at Cajon Junction is a magnificent vista across Crowder Canyon and up to Ralston Peak. Spectacular lightning strikes over the peak added to the sight. Unusual – even rare – weather for southern California.

The turnoff to Lone Pine Canyon Road off CA138 is difficult to see. Swarthout Canyon Road also comes up quickly – an unsealed, easy drive, corrugations notwithstanding. Sometimes severe. But still an easy drive.

The track is an uncomplicated downhill drive to Lone Pine Canyon, part of the Cajon Pass that separates the San Gabriel Mountains and the San Bernadino Mountains.

Near the end of the track I pulled into the carpark, which was just a wider dirt area at Lost Lake, got out and negotiated a tricky walk path to the lake.

On the return from the short walk to the lake I encountered a situation that is becoming increasingly common in California. A couple in a late model BMW vehicle asked me for money for fuel. The newness of the vehicle and the cigarette in the mouth made it easy to say ‘No’.

The track leads to Lone Pine Canyon where I crossed a railway – a major intermodal freight route through the Cajon Pass from San Bernadino to the Victor Valley north of the mountains.

A short distance later the track  becomes sealed. In the Cleghorn Canyon I turned onto historic Route 66.

My course was then onto the 215 Freeway and CA18 back up the mountain to Lake Arrowhead.

© Kim Epton 2022
39 words, eight photographs, one image.

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