Sunday, March 1, 2015

Big climb up San Jacinto

Last week I was lucky to get to join John for his trip to Palm Springs for work.  It was highly enjoyable to see the town (everyone seems happy and laid back) and bask in the desert sun for a few days.

While I was there I took the opportunity to climb the Skyline Trail from town (~500 ft elevation) to the top of the tramway (~8500 ft elevation).  I didn't have time nor the inclination to continue through the snow to the very top of the mountain, but I did manage the return trip on foot instead of taking the tram down as many people do.

It was still quite a long day!

Love the desert terrain:

It's a nice climb rising above town:

Bigger mountains with lots more snow in the distance, and a view toward the valley where John is working:

Spring desert blooms:

A view toward San Jacinto Peak and my target ridgeline:

A safety box in case of emergencies.  For being close to town, the trail gets pretty remote within a few miles:

First signs of snow:

Rocky ridge ahead:

And... snow in the shoes:

View from the tramway balcony (after enjoying a warm cup of cocoa, yay!):

The woods around the tramway - one quiet spot amid bunches of people wandering around during their tramway visit:

The snow was rather deep near the top, and the lack of sun on the north side of the ridge wasn't helping it melt much at all.  Happily, going down went a lot faster than going up, so my feet were soon warm (and eventually dry) again.

A mountain shadow stretching across the valley as I finished my descent, just in time for dinner!

Another day, another fun run around Palm Springs.  Here's a view from the trail leading up toward Bob Hope's house on the south side of town:

Beautiful houses overlooking town:

A glimpse at the curiously-shaped house that Bob Hope owned:

Checking out Palm Springs with San Jacinto towering behind it:

Trails all through the hills on the south side, lots of fun places to run:

And one more view for good measure:

A top-down view of the fascinating house:

It was a fun week, thanks John!

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