Caramba Trip Report

General Palm Springs area.

Caramba Trip Report

Postby Pilgrim » Sun May 21, 2006 11:01 pm

I had a pleasant time in the NF part of the wilderness this weekend. Got a 7am start up Devil's Slide Trail on Saturday after self issuing myself a permit. I always did hate that trail once the sun gets up high, but early in the morning or on a cloudy day, its pleasant enough. With the exception of some early climbers heading to Lily Rock, I was the first one heading up (I know since I was parked right in front of the trailhead since early that morning waiting for the sun to rise).

The journey to Laws Camp was good. The morning weather was cool which made hiking very comfortable. With the exception of one guy catching up while I rested at Saddle Junction, I didn't see a single person until I got to Law's Camp where I ran into some campers who came up a previous day. On the way over, I noticed all the creeks are flowing well with water; even the tiny ones). I made it to Laws Camp late morning and found an isolated site south of the trail along the ridge there (I figured it would have a view of the sunrise and it did).

After taking a nap and setting up camp, I got a 1pm start for Caramba. I passed 2 down trees on the trail but they are easily bypassed. It was hot and exposed most of the way but there was still some water flowing in a few of the streams. I saw more people along this trail then I had all day (7). The creek at the end was flowing nicely as were the "Impassable" Falls. The journey back to my camp was uneventful except there was too much sun. Noticed several more people had arrived and were setting up their tents. They were all well to the north of my camp so I wasn't bothered at all. Spent the rest of the day just enjoying myself at camp. A doe passed through as I was returning from getting water at the creek. Starting late afternoon, a strong wind came up that lasted through most of the night. During the night a small passing cloud decided to sprinkle on my tent waking me up and motivating me to but the rain fly up. Once I did that, the sky remained clear the rest of the night.

The next day, I watched the sunrise. First from within the doorway of my tent, and then latter from a rock with a better view. A deer walked by me as I was sitting there. I wondered if it was the same one from the day before. After a late start (9am), I headed towards Taquitz Peak at a leisurely pace, stopping frequently at the meadows. It was a nicer day then Saturday had been. There were scattered cloulds everywhere and the temperature stayed cooler. I came across a few patches of snow after I crossed Little Tahquitz Valley. Along the trail that heads toward the lookout, I passed several snow drifts. One still completely blocked the trail and was about 2ft deep. About halfway accross while walking in someone's footprints, I noticed a new trail bypass created by popular demand to detour around this drift (popular as in a 100 people's boots erroding a new trail by bypassing this switchback). I arrived at the lookout at noon and was the 3rd person to sign the just started 2006 register. Was also asked for my permit there as was everyone else. A couple of people didn't have one and were warned. They stated next weekend they'll start citing people.

I got back to my car around 2pm and went over to harrass the state parks people. After much talking and begging, the nice Ranger Lady gave in and handed me a permit for Memorial Weekend for Strawberry and Tamarack. Saturday was booked everywhere else, but there are still a few openings at Round Valley and Tamarack for Sunday. I believe they are holding a few places back for last minute people next week, so you may still get lucky. She was hestiant to give me that spot at Strawberry trail camp because there were still a lot of PCT hikers passing through. Going this late, they are going to be miserable by the time they attempt the hot and dry crossing to the Sierras. I only won her over because I went in person. I also probably looked desperate as I had that just off the trail dehydrated and starving look. Don't underestimate the effect of a look of hunger in your eyes. "Give me a permit and while you're at it, give me that granola bar in your bag!"
"So we are probably about where this pebble is, 2 inches off the edge of the map."
Posts: 21
Joined: Thu May 18, 2006 10:53 am
Location: Cerritos

The real Caramba Overlook?

Postby TR4ABrad » Sun Jul 09, 2006 7:48 pm

I went to what I believe is the Caramba Overlook...but I'm not sure?

The wilderness map shows the overlook on the north side of Tahquitz Creek. I followed the trail across the creek and to large granite outcropping on the south side of the creek. Is this the place or did I miss it? I looked carefully for branching trail to the east on my way back across the north side of the creek.

I found the "Impassable Falls" sign and the waterfall...beautiful...made that 1000 foot elevation loss and gain worth it in the end!

Posts: 5
Joined: Fri Jul 07, 2006 4:20 pm
Location: Menifee CA

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