ABOUT THE HIKE: At 10,834 feet, the hike to the summit of Mt. San Jacinto is one of the best hikes in Southern California. You will be rewarded continually with spectacular views as you ascend through a beautiful pine forest within San Jacinto State Park. You will not find any communications towers when you reach the top... just an amazing 360 degree view. The beginning of the hike is itself an adventure using the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway that takes you from the desert floor at 2,543 feet and drops you off at Mountain Station having an elevation of 8,516 feet. We will obtain a free wilderness permit at the Long Valley Ranger Station and begin the hike. The hike from the top of the tram to the summit of Mt. San Jacinto is 11 miles round trip, with 2,300 feet of elevation gain/loss. This is a strenuous intermediate level hike that combines the challenges of distance, elevation gain and altitude. Plan on roughly 4 hours up and 3 hours down the mountain. Note: this is not a walk in the park, beginner hike! Do not sign up for this hike unless you are properly conditioned. Do not sign up for this hike if you are a fast hiker or slow hiker and are not willing to stay with the group. While summer temps in Palm Spring exceed 100 degrees, the temps on the mountain are typically in the 70s. Bring plenty of hydration, as you will be walking through wilderness up to and back from the peak without water. The top of the tram has restrooms and a snack shop, that can reward tired hikers with refreshments... before heading back down the tramway.
ABOUT THE PICNIC: We will have snacks on the summit. Plan to bring lunch for yourself, but if you have treats to share with your hiking buddies that would be nice. Given the elevation and strenuous nature of the hiking challenge, this is not the place for alcohol.
DRIVING DIRECTIONS: Take Interstate 10 east toward Palm Spring... exit at highway 111 toward Palm Springs... when the highway ends you will see a sign for the tram. turn right 3 miles to the parking lot for the Palm Spring Aerial Tramway Station. We will meet at the ticket window. Restrooms are available at the lower tram station.
ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: ***IMPORTANT*** WE WILL BE TAKING THE 9 AM AERIAL TRAM THAT DEPARTS PROMPTLY AT 9 AM. That means that you will need to be parked, have walked to the tram station, used the restroom, PURCHASED YOUR TICKET, and be ready to board the tram prior to the 9 AM departure. We highly recommend that you purchase your ticket on line IN ADVANCE. And print out and bring your ticket and ticket confirmation number. There are 65 spots available on the 9 AM tram and notice that we will be taking up most of that space given the number of hike RSVP. (We do not want our hikers arriving to find the 9 AM tram departure is sold out. If you miss the 9 AM tram departure, this meetup will not be waiting for you.) We also recommend that you arrive at the aerial tram station 30 minutes in advance of the 9 AM departure. Please note the link below to purchase your aerial tram ticket. An adult round trip ticket for the tram is $25.95. Senior over 65 round trip ticket is $23.95. In addition, there is a one dollar processing fee.
ADDITIONAL NOTE: Tram tickets will be available for purchase Saturday morning beginning at 7:30 AM with the first tram departing at 8 AM. You may take any one of the tram departures between 8-9 AM. We will Meetup on the backside of the upper tram station at 9:30 AM. Please plan to arrive early and start with the group at 9:30 AM, that is no early/late hike departures. We are hiking as a team to be sure everyone is safely up and down the mountain.
DISCLAIMER: Group organizer and assistant organizers assume no liability; hike at your own risk. By being a member of this group you hereby agree to assume all risks and liability related to or resulting from any group functions. You agree that neither you nor any third party will hold any of the group's leaders, officers, or representatives liable for any injury, loss, or damage to your own person or any members of your family, friends, acquaintances, children, pets, or property, arising directly or as a consequence from a group activity. You also agree that your membership of this group is based on an "at will" basis.