Explore the most popular hiking trails in San Gorgonio Wilderness with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Wow! A tough hike for sure, especially if you’re hauling enough gear to camp over night. Weather was amazing, clear but somewhat cold. The temp over night was around 20 degrees. The trek to High Creek Campgrounds with 40 lbs. worth of gear was a challenge. From Forest Falls to High Creek is a 3k elevation gain in 8.5 miles. It’s a haul! Then the summit is another 2,400 ft to the top. Round trip is really 22 miles back to the car. Took my 14 year old son, we both got a workout! Watch your time, both the hike in and out we ended up hiking in the dark with headlamps for the last few hours. There’s water at High Creek so you can replenish there if you have a pump/filter.

I should have added that I was the first one down. No one passed me. Two of the groups that were at the summit while I was there arrived at the trailhead about 20 minutes after I did. I think it's justified to call this a 9-10 hour hike for the majority of us.
And to clarify a potential issue: the difference between my mileage (17.3) and AllTrails (15.1) is 2.2 miles. That's more than an hour at my pace. So if I had relied on AllTrails numbers and started later, I could have been coming down in the dark.
I understand that it's difficult to accurately measure distance, even with a GPS in hand. But a chronic shortfall in reporting trail distances points to some issue.
Hikes in Patagonia are marked not by distance, but by the amount of time the able bodied elders in the community take to make the hike. That's a very useful metric. Not sure how to make that work here, other than honest reports.

Hiked this on Veterans Day. A heartfelt thanks to all who served.
Beautiful weather. A bit of wind but not as bad as predicted. The top was almost calm.
Definitely a workout. The manzanita plateau might have been my favorite part. Then the flats near John's Meadow marked with an ancient wheelbarrow.
Not too crowded, I only saw about 2 dozen people the whole day. Pretty good for a weekend.
My Garmin marked 17.3 miles roundtrip and TripSummit has it at 16.8 miles. The Garmin was spot on for vertical gain at 4600 ft.
Glad to see the previous reviewer post how long it took. Six hours is realistic in my opinion. It took me 5.5 hours to reach the summit, and 9.5 roundtrip. I passed three groups on the way up and kept pace with another. I assume they were the first to reach the summit that morning as I didn't see anyone on their down. I summited about 11:30 about 10 minutes after the first group. This was after a 6:15 start.
Great hike and I recommend doing it, but unless you are an extremely fit individual who is well acclimated to altitude, plan on a 10 hour trip to make sure you don't have to hike it in the dark if making the summit is important to you. Regardless, even a hike part way up is well worth it.
AllTrails, I (and from the reviews, several others) clock every hike you describe at a greater distance than stated. I feel this could cause someone a significant issue sometime. I paid for this service to help me plan. Inaccurate information doesn't fit well with that purpose.
Time to get up from your computers and get feet on the ground!

Completed this hike 11/10/18, weather was perfect and the views were amazing! Thanks to all who posted helpful tips on this hike. I found the information to be very helpful. Here’s a few additional tips that may help your hiking adventure to SB peak:
I found this incredibly helpful locating the parking lot to the trail head: 34.14612, -116.97826 (thanks to who shared this on this app!!). You’ll need an Adventure Pass for this trail; however, permits are no longer required for day hikes (but recommended) www.sgwa.org. I did call to confirm information was correct. Always check with Ranger Station for changes and current trail updates before you go out.
Dress in layers. We started at 6am and in the shade it was pretty chilly. You may find a hat and gloves helpful. Bring lots of water! I went through my 3L and 16oz Hydroflask before I finished. No snow on this trail and the spring water was frozen. The trail itself is very well maintained and easy to follow.
The time it took my friend and I to summit was six hours. The first two miles’ish in the beginning I found most challenging on this entire hike. You’ll then go through the Manzanita’s which is fairly flat for quite awhile and you’ll end up at Limber Pines. Once you pass Limber Pines you’ll notice a steady gradual incline to the peak. At the peak, the views are beautiful. Very nice panoramic views of the mountain ranges and surrounding cities. Descending took us a little more than three hours.
Of all the Six Pack of Peaks, this a top favorite! Happy hiking!

One of the best hikes I've done since I've lived here. Gorgeous vistas all along the way and pretty isolate. Camped 2 miles from the top, lots of camping spots, just have to go online and get a permit. They gave me mine the same day I applied so its quick, but it was also shoulder season. I would try to nab it at least 2-3 weeks beforehand during peak season to make sure you get a spot.

Beautiful day and great trail! Stopped at the stream crossing as we were told that it was much more spectacular than the meadow this time of year. Very shady and the trail varies the whole way between ascents and descents. All in all, a nice little conditioning hike.

Side note: we did come across a hunter along the way. Probably a good idea to wear bright orange during hunting season.

hiking
12 days ago

Having hiked this trail on an annual basis for over 20 years today was the first time since the Lake fire in 2015 that I have hiked it. Started out from the trailhead at 6:15 and reached the talus rock summit of Shields Pk. about 3 hours later. I was happy to see that the fire had only touched the Eastern most portions of the trail leaving most of this beautiful forest untouched. The views eastward from the peak include Charelton, Jepson, Gorgonio, and San Jacinto as well as many other of the lesser peaks near 10K. After a short break on Shields I headed over to Anderson Pk. the 3rd tallest peak in the range of individual prominence for another short break. The views from Anderson are a bit more obscured as there are more trees on this summit, but with a bit of moving around all high summits can be viewed from this peak. A very nice day with less than a dozen people encountered during the day, all of which were on the decent.

This was the second time I've gone up to Gorgonio is as many months. The last trip up was 9/16/18 and I'll be going again on 11/24/18. The first time was great! I met up with a group called "Girls that Hike' an they allowed me into their graces and so I ended up hiking with them all day. What a great group!

On my second trip up, I met up with the Outdoor Athlete Enthusiasts, a group I met through Facebook! We met at 5:00 am, the trial head and proceeded from there. What made my second trip so amazing is there there was snow starting at around 9,500 ft! What we reached the summit it was covered in snow! I've read quite a few reviews and the majority seems to agree, this is a difficult hike and although I can agree, It's certainly not the most difficult hike that I've done!

Although, very short, I found that Mt. Baldy via Register Ridge a more challenging hike as far as elevation gain! On Register Ridge, you're gaining around 4000 ft of elevation in just 3.5 miles (or so) and a portion of that (half mile or so) is on the the Devils Backbone trail with is relatively flat on that portion of the trail! If you want to make it interesting, don't join the Backbone trail when it intersects Register Ridge! Take the short walk to Harwood summit and enjoy some nice views of the high desert! Think about it, two summits on one hike? That's kinda cool, don't you think?

OK, Back to Gorgonio...

When you head out from the parking lot, it seems pretty mellow. Once you get across the creek to the switchbacks, that first mile with test you to the extreme! Once you get past that stretch, it's a pretty good hike! You will encounter some difficulty but over it's not to bad! Beware of the "False Summit"! Before I went up, I'd read about it and watched videos describing it but I got snookered in by it! LOL!

Once at the summit, the views are breathtaking! The first time I went up, it was very clear and you could see for hundreds of miles in all directions! On my second it was clear to the north and east but behind us, the clouds moved in and it was amazing to watch it go from clear to cloudy! I'm talking dark ominous clouds! I though we were going to get rain but it never happened! The hike back was great! It was like being in a dark spooky forest! My daughters said that it reminded them of a cemetery in a scary movie! LOL!
I love this hike, I've made it my goal to learn this mountain! This next time I may camp out up there! Not sure yet! So, If you're up for a challenge, I strongly recommend this hike! It's one you'll not soon forget!

This was the second time I've gone up to Gorgonio is as many months. The last trip up was 9/16/18 and I'll be going again on 11/24/18. The first time was great! I met up with a group called "Girls that Hike' an they allowed me into their graces and so I ended up hiking with them all day. What a great group!

On my second trip up, I met up with the Outdoor Athlete Enthusiasts, a group I met through Facebook! We met at 5:00 am, the trial head and proceeded from there. What made my second trip so amazing is there there was snow starting at around 9,500 ft! What we reached the summit it was covered in snow! I've read quite a few reviews and the majority seems to agree, this is a difficult hike and although I can agree, It's certainly not the most difficult hike that I've done!

Although, very short, I found that Mt. Baldy via Register Ridge a more challenging hike as far as elevation gain! On Register Ridge, you're gaining around 4000 ft of elevation in just 3.5 miles (or so) and a portion of that (half mile or so) is on the the Devils Backbone trail with is relatively flat on that portion of the trail! If you want to make it interesting, don't join the Backbone trail when it intersects Register Ridge! Take the short walk to Harwood summit and enjoy some nice views of the high desert! Think about it, two summits on one hike? That's kinda cool, don't you think?

OK, Back to Gorgonio...

When you head out from the parking lot, it seems pretty mellow. Once you get across the creek to the switchbacks, that first mile with test you to the extreme! Once you get past that stretch, it's a pretty good hike! You will encounter some difficulty but over it's not to bad! Beware of the "False Summit"! Before I went up, I'd read about it and watched videos describing it but I got snookered in by it! LOL!

Once at the summit, the views are breathtaking! The first time I went up, it was very clear and you could see for hundreds of miles in all directions! On my second it was clear to the north and east but behind us, the clouds moved in and it was amazing to watch it go from clear to cloudy! I'm talking dark ominous clouds! I though we were going to get rain but it never happened! The hike back was great! It was like being in a dark spooky forest! My daughters said that it reminded them of a cemetery in a scary movie! LOL!
I love this hike, I've made it my goal to learn this mountain! This next time I may camp out up there! Not sure yet! So, If you're up for a challenge, I strongly recommend this hike! It's one you'll not soon forget!

Thinking of doing this tomorrow!Any snow or ice up there? Thanks!

This is a 22 mile hike from the parking lot. I’m not sure why it says 17.
Beautiful and hard

I was fortunate to cross this one off my list. We hiked it on Saturday (10/20/18).

Getting there: for most people it is going to be quite a drive unless you live in this area (obviously) which I do not. It took me about an hour and a half to get there from the Long Beach area since there was no traffic on a Saturday morning at 5 am and about 2 hrs to get home; the dirt road to the trailhead is near the Angelus Oaks Fire Station...the road is narrow and quite bumpy but I saw small cars handle it fine going slowly; the parking lot area was not crowded that early but it was quite crowded when we finished at 2 pm...Adventure Pass is needed

Trail- it is a pretty easy trail to follow and not get lost especially if you are using the ALL TRAILS app which is incredibly useful; the first 3 miles are steep but not too extreme (about 600-700 ft per mile) and then the trail flattens out a bit for the 4th mile and miles 5-8 are moderately steep with elevation gain of about 500-600 ft per mile; the scenery is beautiful and surprisingly green for what you may think San Bernardino to be like...lots of tall green trees and around the halfway part an open area with manzanita; beautiful views along the way in all directions of other nearby mountains, views of the Inland Empire, and a view of Big Bear Lake

Peak- I've read complaints of people complaining of obstructed views at the peak due to tree coverage but I didn't really find the views lacking from up there; there were only a few people at the top while we were there and we had a good time talking to our fellow hikers, enjoyed a Stella Artois celebratory drink, and took our pictures with the wooden sign and added our hiking group sticker to the box at the top; there were some patches of snow and ice along the trail on the final mile to the peak but no special equipment but hiking poles were helpful

My experience: I think we lucked out and had great conditions for our hike with temperatures in the 40's and 50's on a weekend when most cities at lower elevations were experiencing temps in the 80s and 90s; I've been hiking quite a bit in the last few years including longer and longer hikes and more hikes at higher altitudes so I think I was well-prepared to handle this hike without any major difficulties and I found this hike to be hard more for the pure length (my longest hike to date in terms of distance and San Jacinto has been my longest hike in terms of duration); I didn't experience any altitude issues and it wasn't windy or too frigid which I hear it can get this time of year

Details:
Distance- 16.2 miles (I think people who have recorded longer distances usually are tracking it on watches and I have noticed people who use that come up with inaccurate distances)
Difficulty- Strenuous because of distance more than steep incline
Duration- 7.5 hrs (4.5 up, 2.5 down, with a half hour at the top)
Elevation Gain- 4,700 ft
Peak Elevation- 10,649
*a hiking permit is no longer needed for this if you are doing a day hike

Completed this hike as my 6 peaks in 6 weeks combination. A long day of ascending and descending for over 17 miles. Beautiful day with sun and temperate climate the whole hike. Chilly and windy at the top, but to be expected. I have always ascended from Dry Lake camp and this was my first from Vivian Creek.

awesome trail. I'm kinda nooby at hiking so it wrecked me. great stuff

One of my favorite So-Cal hikes. I extended the trip into a 3-day. Camped at Saxton on day 1, summited around noon on day 2 and then continued east around the backside of the mountain down to Dry Lake, then back up to Dollar Lake Camp for night 2, exited back down Momyer day 3. I went in the middle of the week at the end of September and only saw a few people the whole 3 days. Very remote and secluded feeling, especially the backside of the mountain. You will need a Wilderness Permit for this one. Plenty of places to find water along the trail. Highly recommend.

Two hours east of Downtown LA lies San Gorgonio - the highest summit in all of Southern California at 11,503 feet. This is a beast of a mountain that you must be absolutely prepared for especially since it is known to have thunder & lightning storms that can come out of the blue which is exactly the dangerous situation my friend and I would find ourselves in but I'll save that story for later.

About the actual journey, I must say this was probably one of the most beautiful and scenic hikes I have ever done in all of Southern California. It starts in a dried up rocky riverbed, travels through a diverse forest w/ sequoia like trees, and goes all the way up through endless switchbacks while in high altitude. This is an endurance hike as the total mileage you will gain from the parking lot is 21 MILES. Please bring trekking poles and bring at least 5L of water.

And now here's my story. For a majority of the ascent up to the summit, the weather was mostly perfect with a slight overcast and very cool weather. It made the trek very pleasant despite some of the steeper sections. About 1 mile from reaching the summit at 10,500 feet elevation, a light drizzle started and to be honest it actually felt amazingly refreshing. After about 15 minutes and not paying too much attention to the drizzle (We made the mistake of not really observing the clouds in the distance), a thunder and lightning storm towered over the mountain! The thunder sounded so deafening being that high up and it felt like we angered the Greek God Zeus or something. The rain was relentless and the temperature dropped dramatically. My friend and I made the horrible mistake of not having a water proof jacket, extra clothes, and hand warmers. We were completely drenched from head to toe and we started to feel the effects of slight hypothermia. We were so close to the top and we knew we had to turn around and escape the mountain as we saw lightning zap the hill across from us (scary moment). After about 45 minutes of hiding under some trees, we high tailed it down the mountain after the rain let down a bit. Mind you, we had to hike back 10 MILES to get back to our car. It was quite the miserable adventure and I low key thought we were going to die a slow death on that mountain. During the long descent down, the sun magically peeped up for a bit so that we could dry off. We somehow managed to get back to our car and were just happy to be alive. There were only 6 other hikers on the trail that day too and they too had to abortion mission. My lesson here is always be prepared with waterproof jackets, extra clothes, hand warmers, and gloves when you are doing a long hike in the mountains at high altitude.

That day I learned that the mountain will always be there. We were upset we didn't summit that day but were simply just happy to escape. Nature will be quick to humble you if you are not prepared.

- @justroc @just.trek

I absolutely loved this trail! Frozen stream & some snow at the top! Viewed the big bear lake from summit!

Very beautiful. Very long trail but worth it! There was patches of snow starting a lumber pine. At the peak it was icy but ok to cross.

Anybody who has hiked San B last weekend seen any snow on top ? I am thinking to do this coming weekend.

This hike was amazing. It's along day, so give yourself about 10 hours. Also, I highly recommend sun protection for above the treeline.

I have done this trail in the spring, summer and just this past weekend. The summer was miserable ... some long periods of no shade. Really enjoyed making this hike an overnight this past weekend, sleeping at the peak. There is not a lot of people on this trail (a couple now and then; only more crowded toward the top). You are climbing up the back side of the mountain. There are plenty of places to resupply your water (est 4, 6, 8 mile marks). There is a HUGE temperature change from the start to the peak (especially if you camp).

I actually did this hike via John's meadow. A little longer but less people. Great scenic areas!!!

A monster of a hike but well rewarding. Give yourself plenty of time and start early.

Great cool day to go to the summit. The trail Limber Pine Spring had water at the second location at the corner of the switchback. It was covered with Ice, but the water was flowing. There is also packed snow and ice patches about 1/2 a mile to the summit. I ended up using microspikes for the last 100-200 meters due to the ice and steep grade. You might not need them, but I didn't want to risk an injury that far from the trailhead.

This is one of the most beautiful trails that I have hiked in SoCal. It was not crowded at all. There was snow and ice for the last 2 miles on the trail. It took me 4 hours to hike up and 3 hours to return. I highly recommend some microspikes or poles because of the ice and snow. Hopefully with the warmer and dryer weather over the next week will melt everything before next weekend for the next round of hikers!

We hike the Vivian Creek Trail, yesterday October 13, 2018, it was rainy, foggy, and cold: time 7:00AM to 3:00PM. The storm came in. Once we got to High Creek Camp Site, there was snow - you will need your snow chains and dress warm. If you need water, there are creeks and streams near Halfway Campsite at 8,285ft; High Creek Campsite at 9,400ft, but bring a water filter - use the flowing streams/areas to filter water. Bring waterproof clothes. Good experience, but be careful. It is still one of my favorite hike. :)

One of the most beautiful trails in the So Cal peaks. not crowded

One of the most perfect hikes in the San Bernardino wilderness.
Dont tell anyone about it.
Long and tough.

Absolutely loved this hike on a perfect fall day! Hiked first weekend of October...do be aware that temps towards the peak are definitely in the colder range...bring layers...I found I didn't need warm gear for the first 6 miles and then swapped in some warmer gear for the last two to the summit and an additional vest and hat for the first two miles back down. Also note this is a solid 16 mile trail not the 15.1 the description states. Yes the road in to the trail head is partially washed out/not in the best shape...was able to drive it fine with a Honda Fit just took it slow and had no problems.

4 hours to get to the top lots of rocks but well worth it hard run down

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