Explore the best trails near Palm Springs with detailed reviews, photos, trail maps, and driving directions curated by hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.



trail running


wild flowers

no dogs


kid friendly

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mountain biking


trail locations for Palm Springs, California

I completed a partial recon hike during daylight hours just to become familiar with the trail prior to hiking it on the 23rd. I stepped off at about 0700, it was already almost 80 degrees. I hiked up 4 miles just a bit short of the 4300ft marker. I had a map that showed distances to specific markers on the trail. I found that none of the distances on the map matched my GPS. For example, Rescue 1 is marked as being 2.1 miles. My GPS had it at 2.6. Based on the time it took to get to it, I am inclined to say that the GPS has the correct distance. It got hot really quickly and the heat (up 95) took its toll during my 8 mile out and back. There were more people on the trail than I expected. Most of them just hiking in a short distance, and others doing some trail running. Neither going up to the top. If you attempt to hike this make certain you are prepared and you start early. We are starting at 0315, next week.

What an awesome challenge! You must be in shape and experienced before attempting this hike. If you have never hiked this trail before, I strongly recommend doing a daylight pre-hike first. I hike the first four miles up the week before our Sunday hike, just so I could become a little familiar with the trail prior to starting off in the dark at 0315 Sunday. It is pretty easy to get turned around on the trail. Especially in the dark. Our starting weather was perfect. About 70/75 degrees. The temps went up a little, but by the time we were at 6000ft, we had easily beaten the heat of the desert and the temps started going down. When we made it to the peak it was raining, the winds were about 30/35mph and the temps were around 35 degrees with the wind chill factor. Make sure you have a map and compass, and a GPS tracking device. There were about three or four other groups doing C2C today as well. We played leap frog with one of them most of the way up. I took 6 liters of water and was down to my last half liter when we finished. I also used electrolyte tablets twice during the hike.

3 days ago

A nice short hike with great views of Palm Springs.

5 days ago

It was awesome. Short easy hike with beautiful palm trees and other plant growth next to flowing water. Desert and mountain views all in same hike. We really enjoyed. Went at 8am when park opened before it got to hot.

One of my favorites, usually pretty quiet when we go (saturday early mornings)...spring time has the most water at the falls and pools...the views are nice, and it's a pretty easy but good work out

Good hike and work out, nice views, dog friendly

If you are up for a challenging hike this is a good one. I really enjoined it, great views.

Did this as part of cactus to cloud hike. So started at Palm Springs museum trail head and reached the rangers place to catch the trail start. Nice easy trail. All gradual and smooth till the last mile or so to summit. The final 0.3 miles are steep and involve boulder scrambling.

A physically rough hike made even tougher by altitude. Spend some time researching mountain sickness, understand it's signs and don't think your exempt from it's effects because your in good cardio shape.

Buy tickets online for the earliest time available (9:00 AM for me) then show up at 7:30 to see if you can get an earlier spot (wasn't an issue for us on a Saturday). You want as much time as possible to get used to the alt and take extended breaks.

Check in with the Rangers down the ramp from the tramway. For $2 you get a map that they'll highlight for you and give you advice on how to navigate the more confusing trail branches along with pointing out common mistakes.

Make your way from the Ranger station to the Wellman's Divide split/junction. Spend an hour there to get used to the elevation and rest up before the final 2.5 mile trek to summit, you won't regret it and the scenery is spectacular. Make sure you understand the signs and are heading on the right trail when you leave.

The Peak trail is rough, you'll need breaks as you traverse the switchbacks. Keep going and you'll soon be above all those peaks you've been admiring through the trees. The views are stunning the entire way.

When you reach the rock cabin you're right below the peak, it's closer than it appears!

I had a rough time doing this hike despite hiking every weekend in Idyllwild and Palomar over the last two months. The effects of altitude hit me far harder than the physical exertion. Make sure you're ready for this one and don't take it lightly. We witnessed folks quiting due to mountain sickness, limping back with injuries and one being carted away by Rangers. Others were running the trail and making me feel every bit my age while leaving me in awe. I intend to do this hike several times but will camp overnight at one of the camps to let my body adjust prior to summit.

There's no water sources on San Jacinto, the water spiket was dry at Round Valley on 10/15/2016 with a few bottles of water left by fellow hikers under it.

Perfect and exhausting trail

I went on this short hike a year or two ago. It was a beautiful oasis. The waterfall was impressive. Sad to hear the falls are now dry.

29 days ago

Nice quick hike.. really pretty with a little creek and lots of palm trees! First half, if u start at th entrance area, is all shade... the second part is in the sun. All ages hike

Really enjoyed this hike.. the day that I went, there was only a few people on the trail. I passed two ladies on their way down and they said there was no one behind them.. so it was only me up there with a couple guys about half a mile behind me.. wasnt any water due to the time of year, but awesome hike! On the way back down I took a right on another trail that went up to a peak before it went down the other side of the mountain.. only negative on this trail is the horse crap but just watch you step and you will be good!!

A easy 45 minutes hike. Before 9am you will walk 100% in the shade. Waterfall is dry, but it stills humide with a lot of trees and amazing stones.
Une promenade facile dans un cadre joli. 45 minutes de marche pour faire la boucle complète. Avant 9h du matin vous serez totalement à l'ombre.

1 month ago

Trail excellent for a good workout. I was lucky enough to do it on a late September day when it rained. Cloudy and cool (for the desert) when I started the hike behind the museum. The usual Palm Springs vegetation, but outstanding views of the Coachella Valley below. Hey, please no more construction. I thought Palm Springs desires a "village" atmosphere. Steep uphill climb to the picnic tables. I had to stop often to catch my breath. On my decent the rain fall much harder and I was able to witness the brown / yellow desert turn green right before my eyes. I started early at 6:00 am and come across a few locals who use the trail for exercise. This was my first desert hike were I didn't use my sunglasses, suntan lotion, and hat (of course I had these items in my bag). This was my second time on this trail and I will return again in the future.