Trailhead: Millard Canyon Trailhead, parking area T2
Trail: Sunset Ridge Trail to Millard Canyon up to Tom Sloane Saddle and down to Bear Canyon Campground.
Stats:10.8 miles, 3,100′ of gain and loss.
Last Hiked: 2-19-2018
Route Description: Take the Upper Sunset Ridge Trail until you reach the junction with the Millard Canyon Trail. Go left and down at the junction and pass the cabin as you make your way up Millard Canyon. About 0.3 miles up the trail is a trail sign with an arrow that simply indicates the way to continue along the Millard Canyon Trail.
Side Trip: However, the sign also is at a junction for the Saucer Branch Falls. It is a short 0.1 mile round trip side trip to the base of the Falls. Currently, the view of the falls is mostly blocked from below due to growth in vegetation. However, the trail itself to get to the base of the falls was recently maintained. Getting above the pool at the base of the falls is not safe (or even feasible for most people without climbing gear and special training). So, for everyone else (myself included), enjoy what is viewable and return to the Millard Canyon Trail.
Follow the trail up the Canyon until you reach another junction. There will be three ways to proceed. Down on the left leads to the entrance to Dawn Mine from below. The trail forward leads nowhere and may have been an older route. Take the trail on the right with stone steps to continue following the Millard Canyon Trail. About 0.1 miles further there is another junction with a trail sign for Dawn Mine.
Side Trip: It is about 0.1 miles round trip to follow the trail down to the entrance of the mine. Access into the mine itself is now closed. This is the upper approach to the same entrance to the mine that can be reached from the earlier junction and appears to be the one that will be maintained moving forward.
Continue going up Millard Canyon passing the junction for the Dawn Mine Trail (which leads to Dawn Station) until you reach Tom Sloane Saddle. At the saddle, there are three options to proceed. Take the Bear Canyon Trail which is the only trail leading down. Currently, a manzanita partially blocks the view of the trail.
Follow the Bear Canyon Trail down to Bear Canyon Campground and return the same way.