Skyline trail conditions

General Palm Springs area.

Skyline trail conditions

Postby pkirkham » Thu May 21, 2020 10:56 am

A friend and I hiked Skyline from PS over to Humber Park in Idyllwild yesterday. The conditions were amazing! Lots of wild flowers out along the trail. I was actually amazed at how overgrown some sections of the trail have become. Maybe because of the lack of foot traffic due to the Tramway closure? The top half mile of the trail below Grubbs Notch has a lot of deadfall across it..some new and some old I believe. Oh yeah, no snow at all!
Once in Long Valley it was beautiful with the creek flowing strongly and no other people in anywhere!! If you get the chance, before it gets too hot, try and get up there before the Tramway reopens. (At Coffman rock we could here the tram moving, maybe they were doing maintenance?).
pkirkham
 
Posts: 51
Joined: Tue Apr 19, 2016 8:49 am

Re: Skyline trail conditions

Postby guest » Thu May 21, 2020 2:00 pm

Sounds like a great trek pkirkham, thanks for the report. After 2 good winters of rains, and the tram keeping 90% of hikers off all but lower parts of Skyline, I'm not that surprised it's already getting a bit over grown. Many of the original sections are all but unrecognizable in areas, (like 3-4,500 ft.).

I think your right about experiencing this trek now, as there may be few chances the mt & tril will be this deserted.
The dead fall high up will make those barely making it, to really struggle to reach Long Valley, but that's nature. Been watching trees block the trail for many years now, and we all figure out a way around, unless the tree gets taken down in another storm later on.

I'm assuming you went via Willow Creek? If so, how was that redone section where the burn was, and water flowing around there?
Thxs scott
guest
 
Posts: 679
Joined: Fri Oct 27, 2006 3:27 pm

Re: Skyline trail conditions

Postby pkirkham » Sun May 24, 2020 3:16 pm

The Willow Creek trail beyond Hidden Divide has fallen into disrepair since it reopened. Some of the tread is washed out in places and plenty of dead fall that needs clearing. Also, the white thorn is becoming increasingly annoying growing over the trail now almost to knee height in places...long pants are a necessity!! Water is flowing everywhere right now and Willow and Tahquitz creeks are going gangbusters.
It's still like a freeway compared to the Laws/Caramba trail though!! A group of four of us camped in Tahquitz valley Friday/Saturday nights and we hiked down to the falls yesterday. We pretty much traveled cross country to what is left of "Laws Junction" and then found remnants of the original trail that are cairned down to Caramba. I used a GPS track of the old original trail route to keep us on track. The water flow down there is amazing right now and contrary to all the rumors, Caramba did NOT burn at all in the last two fires...it is still absolutely beautiful down there, just tricky to get to these days!!
pkirkham
 
Posts: 51
Joined: Tue Apr 19, 2016 8:49 am

Re: Skyline trail conditions

Postby guest » Sun May 24, 2020 8:30 pm

Thanks for that update, I had a felling that trail would be tough to keep tramped down, with what little travel it seems to get, (too far from the burgers & fries at the tram!).

I think it's a bit of a shame that SBNF & SJSP are utilizing CCC crews to do all of the campground improvements, (which creating an unsightly & rather destructive mechanical mule trail from Long to Round Valley, and the needed meadow restoration, but are spending almost no time working to save some of the trails that are really beginning to disappear. Plus, some of the main trails are in need some real maint., but are getting little, as the trail building criteria that is being required for new trails, (dig a low bed, cut / crush rock into flat pieces to lay down, then cover over w soil), takes a very long time.
Now I'm tempted to check out Carumba, even though the journey sounds a bit painful, as that's such an intriguing area, (those considering, use caution further done the stream, as it gets rather technical). Sounds like a person can go real light on carrying water rigth now! ss
guest
 
Posts: 679
Joined: Fri Oct 27, 2006 3:27 pm

Re: Skyline trail conditions

Postby KC2011 » Mon May 25, 2020 2:42 pm

Thanks for the trip report. I wanted to beat the heat one last time also, so I trekked from the Art Museum to the Tram and back on Saturday. Lower part til the picnic tables is still quite busy, but above that I saw no one including in Long Valley. Actually, "no one" is accurate but I saw plenty of nature including 4 snakes. I've seen my share of rattle snakes in Southern California, so I make sure I make noise with my poles and don't wear earbuds. In spite of that, I literally almost stepped on the rattlesnake (Western spotted, I think). That was about 15 minutes below Rescue 1. Plenty of great scenery, and as mentioned, the trail is overgrown in a lot of areas with the traverse having a good number of fallen trees. Above Grubb's notch is basically a free-for-all with all the new fallen trees and non-obvious trail. (Coming back down was a bit difficult to find the trail). Fortunately, I was able to refill all my bottles/bladder at the Ranger Station (though I did bring a filter just in case) and use the BR as it was open. The trek down was more difficult than I thought, probably because my legs are not used to that kind of pounding downhill. You don't realize how steep it is until you go back down. Great day hike; but look forward to when the tram opens again! (Happy to attach images, but couldn't figure it out)
KC2011
 
Posts: 1
Joined: Mon May 25, 2020 2:11 pm


Return to Mt. San Jacinto & Santa Rosa Mountains

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

cron