Hike Into History: Sturtevant Camp

January 12, 2015

Sturtevant's Swiss Lodge

Sturtevant’s Swiss Lodge


Join Casey Schreiner of Modern Hiker and Deb Burgess of Adams’ Pack Station for a hike to historic Sturtevant Camp.

Just as they did a century ago, we will travel along a well-marked trail into the Camp, where we’ll be able to peek into all of the buildings on site, including the oldest existing U.S. Forest Service structure still in its original location, a beautiful hand built cabin (circa 1903) that served as the first ranger station, and the original 1897 Swiss Dining Pavilion, this currently serves as Sturtevant Lodge. Just as they did in 1936, Adams’ Pack Station will bring along the pack train with lunch and water to the Camp.

Meet here at Adams’ Pack Station Sunday, January 25, 2015 at 7:30 am. The cost is FREE, light lunches and water will be provided (If you’re a big eater or thirsty hiker, snacks and water are available at the Pack Station store, or you can bring your own.) Parking is available in the lots at Chantry Flat and along the road with an Adventure Pass, or in the private parking lot at Adams’ Pack Station
for $10.

This is a fundraiser to save Sturtevant Camp. Friends of the San Gabriels will raise money by selling T-shirts, and of course donations are more than welcome. Check out the list of donor incentives below. You can download the fundraiser prospectus here (pdf).

Moderate hike – approx. 8 miles round trip, hike at your own risk.

For More Information Contact Deb Burgess at 626-447-7356

Remember that your donations are tax-deductible.

  • For donations of $5,000 or more, we will name a guest cabin after you or an honoree of your choice. Plus, you have the privilege of reserving the Retreat Cottage for yourself and up to 5 friends twice a year for two years.
  • For donations of $1,000, you can adopt a cabin (you get a plaque in the cabin) and you can reserve the Retreat Cottage for yourself and up to 5 friends during 2015.
  • For donations of $500, you can be one of many to adopt the Ranger cabin or another building and reserve the Retreat Cottage.
  • For donations of $100, you can enter to win a full weekend in the Retreat Cottage for yourself and up to five friends. Packing included. We will draw the winner in late February.
  • For donations of $25 or more, we will treat you to lunch at the pack station on a music Sunday. Yum!
  • Finally, all donors above $100 will be listed on a donation wall and receive a free t-shirt. (unless you want to remain anonymous).

Lila Adams Celebration of Life

April 14, 2014

DSC04231On April 12th, 2014 the family and friends of Lila Adams, co-proprietor of Adams’ Pack Station and caretaker of Big Santa Anita Canyon for over thirty years, gathered here at the pack station to celebrate her life (1919 – 2013).

Folks came from far and wide to remember together the woman who treated everyone with kindness and love. The celebration featured live music, good food, stories and reunions.

Lila’s family members planted a native Coast Live Oak in her honor, that she may live on at the place that she loved for decades to come.

Below are a few photos of shared memorabilia and videos of folks sharing stories about Lila…



Lila Adams Memorial Party

March 26, 2014

Lila AdamsWe will be celebrating the life of Lila Adams on Saturday, April 12th

Here some bullet points for those planning to attend:

  • Please RSVP so that we have an approximate count. Email Deb at dburgess@adamspackstation.com.
  • The pack station will be open at 7:00 am, so come as early as you like. The party starts at noon with music by the Wild Mountain Mystics. The tree-planting ceremony (an oak tree because she was truly a mighty oak) and dedicated music will begin at 1:00 pm. Music continues until 5 pm with Chico’s Blues and The Subs.
  • Limited edition memorial t-shirts will be available for $10. The back will have an oak tree with the saying “She Was a Mighty Oak” and “Lila Adams 1919 – 2013”. It would be helpful if you can tell us how many shirts you would like. See the t-shirt design here (pdf)
  • Parking will be at a premium.  We believe that we can accommodate about 70 cars at the heliport on the heliport road, and a few at the pack station.  Please arrive early as we will need to shuttle up and down from the heliport.  We do not believe we can shuttle that many people in an hour so arrival by 11 would be helpful.  Parking will be $10.
  • We will be offering BBQ and Dutch-oven cooking (pulled pork and mac-n-cheese).
  • Snack foods, water, and cake will be provided at no cost.

Closed for Rain February 28 – March 1

February 25, 2014

Rain Feb 29 - Mar 1The pack station will be closed for heavy rain expected Friday, February 28th and Saturday, March 1st.

Sunday Mar 2nd is forecast to be sunny, so we may be open and will update you here.

NOTE: crossing streams in the rain or the following days can be very dangerous. The water may be deceptively swift. There are a few hikes from Chantry Flat that do not involve stream crossings, including the San Olene Fire Road to Lookout Point and Upper Winter Creek Trail to Mount Wilson. There may be some snow accumulation at Wilson, so be prepared with proper gear and footwear.

Remember if you come up and we are closed, you can park in our dirt lot for $5 and you do not need a pass. The gate to Chantry Flat may be closed by the City of Sierra Madre if there are rock slides on the road. You can check the status of the gate by calling Sierra Madre Police at 626-355-1414.

World’s Fourth Largest Pancake

February 9, 2014

Mojoe Outfitters and Adams’ Pack Station host an epic and successful attempt to produce the World’s Fourth Largest Pancake using a Mojoe Griddle on a Weber BBQ. The crowds cheer, the children squeal with delight and the band plays on!

Go to www.mojoeoutfitters.com to see the amazing Mojoe Griddle that made this feat possible.

Chantry Road and Pack Station Store is Closed

October 3, 2013

“The U.S Forest Service has shut down the Chantry Flats Recreation Area due to the Federal Furlough. It will remain closed until further notice and the gates leading up to Chantry will remain locked.” ~City of Sierra Madre

I have discovered that there are various level of awareness concerning the news and what is happening federally, as well as locally. So, I thought I would inform and clear up a few things.

First, if you do not pay any attention to the news, the federal government has shut down over a dispute regarding the Affordable Health Care Act (ObamaCare). Neither side is budging and so they are at a stalemate.

That has resulted in many or most government agencies shutting down. Staff have been furloughed from such agencies as the National Park Service, the National Forest Service, the Veterans’ Administration, etc.

That has resulted in shutting down any developed areas of the Angeles National Forest which includes Chantry Flat and Mt. Wilson. Any area or facility that is developed and requires any level of maintenance (whether actually done or not) has been closed. The hiking trails are open but you have to walk to get to them.

That has resulted in closing Adams’ Pack Station.  As a small business that employees staff that live off the meager wages they earn from us, this is devastating. It could go on for weeks.

Permittees (cabin owners) are allowed to enter through the Chantry Gate as they do not require maintenance of facilities. They are not to let the general public in so don’t ask ;-o))

If you want to hike up or bike up the road, you may do so. However, please be cognizant that there ARE cars on the road (that would the residents and cabin owners). Keep your dogs under control (I almost hit one coming up tonight). Bike and hike on the correct side of the road, not in the middle.  Basically, just act smart.

I will keep you posted via Facebook and here on our website,
Deb Burgess

Chantry Flat Temporarily Closed

October 2, 2013

“The U.S Forest Service has shut down the Chantry Flats Recreation Area due to the Federal Furlough. It will remain closed until further notice and the gates leading up to Chantry will remain locked.” ~City of Sierra Madre

Lila Adams Passes Away

September 23, 2013

Lila AdamsLila Adams, who ran Adams’ Pack Station for 35 years with her husband Bill, has passed away on September 22nd, 2013.

Bill and Lila were married and moved into the pack station in 1953, when it still had a crank phone to the city and an outhouse in back. They steadfastly upheld the packing tradition and a cordial attitude through many fires, floods, regulations and cultural changes that affected Big Santa Anita Canyon.

“This is a great loss. I find myself struggling with how to continue such a great tradition. Lila had such a kind touch. Everyone who knew her loved her.” ~Deb Burgess, owner of Adams’ Pack Station

Live Music & Pulled Pork Sunday, June 16th

June 15, 2013

Come join Adams’ Pack Station for a live music concert and BBQ this Sunday, June 16th from 12:00 noon til 5:30 pm. Eric will be on hand Saturday and Sunday to delight you with his critically-acclaimed pulled pork sandwiches, and we will be grilling burgers, dogs and hot links, and serving up our hot, fresh french fries. Of course, ice cold beer and refreshments are available, as well as ice cream treats. Come for a hike and stay for the music and food.

Special treat this Sunday! Monica will be cooking her Dutch oven macaroni & cheese.

Concert Line-Up:

Time: Artist: Website:
12:00-2:00 Bryan Chan www.youtube.com/watch?v=kcrIBv1ug4c
2:00-4:00 GRIT  www.myspace.com/gritthemusic
4:00-5:00 Tim Tedrow & Terry Vreeland  www.trough.com/tedrow-vreeland/default.htm

Rich Conforti 1952 – 2013

May 30, 2013

Rich ConfortiMany of you knew Rich as the guy who would cook you a “perfect canyon dog” or give you a hard time about not parking right, or tell a joke, or a story.

But that was only part of who Rich was. Rich loved to play golf, was an avid Celtics, Red Sox, Patriots fan, a wonderful father, great companion, and someone you could always call to cheer you up by making you laugh.

I have known Rich for 32 years. He was the love of my life and my very best friend in the entire world.

I miss him so much already.

Play well Rich. You are under par on your final hole.

-Deb Burgess