Solo Hiking around Palm Springs

May 6th, 2011, 07:47 PM
  #1  
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Solo Hiking around Palm Springs

Last year I hiked a bit of Indian Canyons by myself (I'm a middle aged female). On our upcoming trip I'd like to do more of that and perhaps some of the trails on Mt. San Jacinto, taking the tram to the top. Is it adviseable to do this solo? I don't plan to go far. My spouse is not able to hike.
Maggi is offline  
May 7th, 2011, 04:09 AM
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I don't think it is good hike solo. Just check if there are groups who conduct group hiking. It is better to go with a group that alone. Advantage is that you can interact with more people and learn more things..
Amydiaz11 is offline  
May 7th, 2011, 04:45 AM
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I have tried to check into group hikes, but they are pretty expensive. I'm not opposed to it, just have to find the right one I guess. I don't necessarily like the idea of a group cause I'm not looking to interact with people, rather with the beauty of my surroundings. I'm a photographer and desire the freedom of taking my time to set up shots.
Maggi is offline  
May 7th, 2011, 05:49 AM
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As a geocacher, I often hike alone. It is always more enjoyable and safer to hike with someone else. Buying a GPSr or using your smart phone with a tracking app and learning how not to get lost is a good idea.
Some of my best friends are geocachers. There are groups of geocachers that go on monthly hikes.
tomfuller is offline  
May 7th, 2011, 06:09 AM
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Thanks Tom,I'm assuming the trails are well marked on Mt. San Jacinto, at least close to the lodge. I'm not planning to go very far. Don't have a smart phone, just a normal mobile phone, but I wonder if my Verizon service will work up there?
Maggi is offline  
May 8th, 2011, 09:22 AM
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Maggi,

I'm an experienced hiker and have solo hiked many times, though it isn't the greatest idea for various reasons. Cell service at the top of the tram and in the San Jacinto state park is spotty, at best. There are some good looped trails that go from the bottom of the paved ramp from the Mtn Station that are pretty well marked. But it's still possible to get lost---happens to visitors almost every year.

Make sure you have the ten basics:

The 10 Essentials-10 things to bring on every hike

1.map

2.compass

3.matches

4.fire starter

5.knife

6.flashlight

7.extra food/water

8.extra clothing

9.first aid kit

10.sunglasses

A GPS unit is nice to carry, but a cell phone is a good second. I'd also add sunscreen. You can pick up a simple trail map at the ranger's office in the Mountain Station on the lower level just inside the doorways to the paved ramp. A USGS quad map is even better and can be purchased there inexpensively.

Leave a note in your car at the Valley Station parking lot stating your plans and where you intend to go.

Stay safe!
PSLocal is offline  
May 8th, 2011, 11:33 AM
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My dad lives a few miles from there. He tells me hikers get lost constantly up there. Be careful and stay on the trails.



Excellent advice, as well as telling someone at home when you specifically plan to check in/return, that way if you are lost, someone can start the ball rolling without too much time passing.

It is beautiful up there. Hikers can take the tram one way.
michele_d is offline  
May 8th, 2011, 06:31 PM
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Wow, PSlocal and Michele, very good advice indeed. I'm from out ot town and don't have all that gear with me. Perhaps the original suggestion of a tour is my best option, being that I'm such a newbie. I'm following up on all options and sure do appreciate everyone's input.
Maggi is offline  
May 8th, 2011, 06:43 PM
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Hi Maggi,
If you take the tram to the top of the mountain you can get to a very nice area straight out the back of the observation tower. Once you go down the cement pathway you will come to an open area with a creek running through it. It is very pretty back there.

If you stick right in that area, with other people roaming around, you should be fine but I sure would not wander much farther than that if you are not an experienced hiker and most definitely do not go without a whistle. That way even if you do wander a bit farther than you should or become hurt, just start blowing.

It is a beautiful area up there and if you just want to walk around up there for an hour or two this might be the solution.
Michele
michele_d is offline  
May 9th, 2011, 06:16 AM
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Yes,Michele, that is exactly what I am looking for. Perfect, thanks! It's a bit windy today, will wait for a day this week when it is really hot down below and it will be a nice change to get to a cooler altitude.
Maggi is offline  
May 10th, 2011, 07:49 AM
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If you have a car or want to rent a car for the day, we enjoyed Joshua Tree National Park. We drove the park and did some short hikes--we entered at the West entrance and exited at the Oasis Visitor Center--it makes a loop.

There is a nice trail that we did that did not require entrance to the park, 49 Palms Oasis. There were several people hiking it alone. You take Rte 62 and turn right on Canyon Rd. It is right before you get to the town of 29Palms. There was also a great diner to stop at on 62--can't remember the name, but we chose it because the parking lot was full.
LindainOhio is offline  
May 11th, 2011, 06:22 AM
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Lindainohio, amazingly at this very moment we are preparing to leave for that park and I am reading up on it. Came to the forums to check and here is your post. How timely! Thank you!
Maggi is offline  
May 15th, 2011, 05:50 AM
  #13  
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It was a great week in Palm Springs! As it turns out, my fears were unfounded, as most places had so many people I didn't feel at all worried about hiking alone. I was only doing short hikes, so possibly longer hikes would be more risky. My favorite place to walk around was and still is Indian Canyons. This year I was able to see the waterfall, last October it was dry. The Palm Canyon is so lush and cool on a hot sunny day and I always take tons of photos of the hummingbirds at the Trading Post feeders. They are used to people, so you can get really close.

We loved Joshua Tree National Park. It is so different from the geography I am used to, I find it endlessly fascinating, especially the Jumbo Rocks area. It reminded me a bit of the Baths in Virgin Gorda (minus the water).

Thanks to all for taking the time to reply. Happy travels!
Maggi is offline  
May 18th, 2011, 01:18 PM
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Maggi,

That's great news. The water should be running in the Indian Canyons for awhile longer due to a good snowpack in the San Jacintos and cooler than normal weather. I think the Canyons are at their best when the streams are flowing.

Agree, Joshua Tree is something. There are so many different environments there. Jumbo Rocks is one of my favorites too. I have also been to the BWI and Virgin Gorda and see what you mean.

Hope you come back.
PSLocal is offline  
May 18th, 2011, 10:17 PM
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Thanks, PS. Lucky you to be a local! Although I'm not sure I would envy you in the deep summer, lol.
Maggi is offline  
May 22nd, 2011, 01:24 PM
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Maggi, agree. We sort of look at the 4 months of summer as paying the freight on the great winter. I similarly would not have wanted to trade places with anyone in the northeast this past winter!

On the note of hiking in the San Jacinto Wilderness at the top of the tram, this appeared today in our local paper. I hope it turns out ok...

http://www.mydesert.com/article/2011...|lateststories
PSLocal is offline  
May 22nd, 2011, 05:00 PM
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Yup, you're right. I'd trade heat for cold and snow anyday. But my friends who live out there "love" the rain and snow. Go figure. The grass is always greener!

It seems they were found and were OK thank God. That probably would be me, so it's a good thing I stayed close.
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May 22nd, 2011, 08:59 PM
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Yup, home is where you make it!

Glad they were found safe and uninjured. Doesn't always turn out that way.
PSLocal is offline  
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