Summiting San Jacinto from PCT

General Palm Springs area.

Summiting San Jacinto from PCT

Postby woodowl » Mon Apr 09, 2007 9:14 pm

I am a PCT hiker who has gone through the Jacintos twice on the Pacific Crest Trail, but this year I would like to go to the summit. I have a Tom Harrison map that shows the different trails. I would like to take the Wellman Cienega around to the peak then down to where the PCT goes down Fuller Ridge. My question is how good is the trail, and is it well marked at trail junctions. I should be there around May 3rd.
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Postby cynthia23 » Tue Apr 10, 2007 9:10 am

The trail is excellent, well-maintained, and well-marked. I have done this loop, although in the opposite direction. You should have no problems, although there might still be some packed snow/ice in the shady chutes on the east side. However by May (barring some giant storm) I believe it should be not a big deal and fine with decent boots and poles. The only issue is that this loop is tiring and quite strenuous and makes for a long day. However, if you are a regular PCT hiker it should not be a big problem for you. The other thing is that that section of the PCT (which you will be skipping around, if I"m understanding your plan) is very pretty, since it goes parallel to Tahquitz Rock and is very scenic. In a way it's a shame to miss that section. But hey, the other side of the mountain ain't exactly ugly, either.
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Postby phydeux » Tue Apr 10, 2007 6:30 pm

Yep, as cynthia says, its well maintained and well marked (and well traveled!). While not as shady as the western side, the eastern side gets you great views of the Coachella Valley areas, and the summit view is pretty spectacular (always wondered why the PCT didn't go through the summit).

There was only minimal snow from Wellmans Divide to the peak to Little Round Valley two weeks ago, so I'd image it'll be completely gone by early May. If you need to find water there should be a trickle at Wellman's Cienega, and some type of runoff in a small 'creek' at Little Round Valley, about 1.5 miles west of the peak as you head down to the Fuller Ridge trail junction.

Q: Are you through-hiking the PCT this year?
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PCT

Postby woodowl » Tue Apr 10, 2007 8:00 pm

Thank You Cynthia and Phydeux,

Yes I am thru hiking , I have done large sections of the trail in the past but haven't thru hiked it yet. I have taken the PCT through that section twice before taking the Devils Slide Trail down to Idyllwild to resupply and back up it again. This year I thought it would be nice to see the other side of the mountain. It's nice to know ahead of time that the trails are in good shape.
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Summiting San Jacinto from PCT

Postby asabat » Wed Apr 11, 2007 7:52 pm

WoodOwl, have a great time. San Jacinto is a great peak to summit. The caution I would offer is that if Wellmans Cienaga and the creek in Little Round Valley are dry, you might not be able to get water until Snow Creek. I'd suggest asking here again closer to your trip about water at Wellmans and Little Round Valley. Otherwise, you might need to detour south on the PCT from the Fuller Ridge juction a little to get water at Deer Spring.
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Postby woodowl » Thu Apr 12, 2007 5:08 am

Asabat,

I'll do that , it isn't a very long detour if I remember right it's about 1/4 mile from Fuller Ridge.
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Postby CascadeDave » Mon Apr 30, 2007 9:58 pm

phydeux wrote:Yep, as cynthia says, its well maintained and well marked (and well traveled!). While not as shady as the western side, the eastern side gets you great views of the Coachella Valley areas, and the summit view is pretty spectacular (always wondered why the PCT didn't go through the summit).


Q: Are you through-hiking the PCT this year?


PCT sometimes should be called the PVT - Pacific Valley Trail. In many places it seems to stay low, only getting altitude to get over passes.
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