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The San Gorgonio Wilderness is the climax region of the San Bernardino Mountains in Southern California. Located on the San Bernardino National Forest approximately 75 miles east of Los Angeles (click here for vicinity map), the Wilderness receives approximately 200,000 visitors per year. Its 58,969 acres harbor two small lakes, meadows, streams, 100 miles of trail, densely forested northern slopes, and rugged terrain. Elevations range from 4,400 feet to 11,499 atop namesake Mt. San Gorgonio. Eleven of twelve peaks in the Wilderness recognized by U.S. Geological Survey maps are over 10,000 feet in height, with Mt. San Gorgonio being the highest. As the highest peak between the Sierra Nevada mountain range and the Mexican border, Mt. San Gorgonio offers unparalleled views of metropolitan Los Angeles and the Mojave Desert. More great information here.

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

The best of the 6 SoCal peak challenge.... also my friend’s and I last one too!

Anyways, the views are worth the barriers of wind or incline (switchbacks and vertical at the end). BUT we had flash floods towards the river bank due to HAIL/RAIN/THUNDER as we descended down around 2pm, also the forecast said sunny and 20% chance of rain.... but not DOWNPOUR.

Bring waterproof clothing just in case or else you’ll be walking drenched through the camping sights where most of the water starts rushing down on the trail itself.

Make sure to get out of the hike before it gets dark especially at the end of summer season

Still my favorite :)

Great escape from OC. Cool breezes, sometimes really windy, and fresh air. I came unfortunately unprepared as it was a spontaneous trip- I brought 1 liter of water and forgot my main bottle at home. Definitely need 2+ liters if you want to make it to the top. With photo searching, carrying my camera bag and tripod, and using trekking poles, at just a leisure pace it’ll take 6+ hours to get to the top. Love seeing so much trees, and all of the hikers I crossed were very friendly. Gets really windy at the top and at times freezing. I’m excited for my next trip and hopefully go around closer to November or December. I had also seen people who just go jogging up and down with just a hydration pack.

I'm a ranger volunteer for the SGWA. I have hiked this many of time and have to say its a easy trail with lots of views and running streams to the meadow where you can overnight camp. Go approx another two tenths of a mile where you will find a waterfall running all year long.

Beautiful day hike especially for those who are willing to take on a challenge while avoiding crowds it’s very rare to see another person on this trail don’t forget to stop about .7 of mile from the summit for a exceptional view and a cool make shift bench out of stone that is excellent for a photo to compliment the adventure you just took

**If you start this hike before dawn, please read**

Immediately after the first "Trail" sign, do not follow the wash of the creek. The trailhead is ACROSS the wash. In darkness this sign is almost impossible to see. There are footprints along the wash that make it look like a trail, but again, do not follow the wash. Cross it. I made this mistake and ended up hiking 6 miles before we came to the conclusion that we were off track. One of the park rangers told me she had met many other people who made the same mistake. You can still coordinate your GPS location on the trail map even when you don't have service.

The next weekend (Sep 22) we went again and took the right trail. This was a gorgeous, scenic hike! The hardest of the Six Pack of Peaks but also very rewarding. It took us 5hr 4m to summit and 3hr 30m to descend. I used about 3L of water along with refilling some at the campsite on the way down.

hiking
28 days ago

Definitely an accomplishment! Great to be at the top above everything else. Make sure to take the little spur to the right at the saddle around 7.3 miles. Great views and rest before the toughest part of the climb.
We started at 630 on friday and saw only a few folks going up, summit about 1215, return took a little under 4 hours. Saw more filks on the way down, but i would not suggest a day hike starting after 7.

Peaked on 22nd Sept. It was a perfect day with barely any winds. Another group who summited last weekend faced 60m/hr winds at the top.
Parking: Start early and you won't have a problem. we started at 3am.
Water: Took 2 litees. Filled twice at High Creek. used clorine tablets to purify.
Trail: Tricky point at the beginning when we cross the riverbed. We had someone who had done it before with us to help us navigate this part in dark. Before descending to the riverbed, shine your headlamp pointing straight ahead until u see the reflection from the trail sign on the other end. Then walk towards that reflection to get to the right trail.

I found the beginning 1.5 mile climb not as difficult as the last 4 miles after High Creek.

Saw 2 guys with serious hunting equipment on the trail between Vivian and High Creek, hunting deers! I talked to the ranger and found out, the hunting season is on but they were not in the destinated hunting area. If u see something say something. Don't hesitate to question and report folks who seem out of place. Their arrow can hit any hiker if they hunt in non designated areas.

Again: This one is not for me. Won't do it again. Too long and Peak not as interesting. Glad to get it checked off my bucket list!

I gave this trail a 4 Star because we miss the turn to the trail entrance . Right before wt the fork It should of been mark better after the trial head, we walk straight on the rocky sand along the waterfall for 1.5 miles until ran into a girl who went for 2-3 miles out and realize she was lost . So after all that we end up with 20.3 miles
Moderate, not too hard. You can bring 3-4 frozen water bottle is enough. Depend how you hydrate, plus a jacket , it can be really cold around September.
It’s a beautiful trial !!

Water update for Vivian Creek trail:
I just completed this challenging but rewarding hike September 22-23rd. Plenty of water available at Vivian Creek Camp, no water available at Halfway Camp, and plenty of water at High Creek Camp. So do not do what I did and safe yourself of 12 extra unnecessary pounds of water.

One of the prettiest hikes I have done. It has a gradual incline so not so bad, About a mile in a half before the Peak vear to the right and you will see a cement bench with incredible views! This is a popular trail so parking was filling up fast around 6:00 am but it was gonna be a warm day. Highly recommend...

hiking
30 days ago

Hiked on Friday 9/21/18. Beautiful hike and very well maintained trail. Lots of different mileage estimates out there, but definitely more than 15.1 miles — my best estimate is 15.8 miles. Elevation gain is 4,719 feet from the parking lot. Leave early! You’ll appreciate the cool of the early morning. Take at least 3 or 4 liters of water, but there was at least 1 small stream (needs to be treated or filtered) on the trail still running, about halfway to summit. The approach dirt road is very rutted now, I would not recommend taking it with a low clearance vehicle. Saw mountain lion prints on the trail on the way up. Windy at various spots, but not at the summit the day I hiked it.

backpacking
30 days ago

I hiked it in September of 2018 and it was beautiful. Rough time going up for inexperienced hikers. Wasn't too cold to camp without a tent. Also not too many bugs

My fav of the Six pack of peaks SoCal, its #4 for me. Didn't really feel the elevation gain due to the gradual switchbacks. Left close to 6:30 am last Saturday and finished at 1:30 pm. Really windy at the top. Dress accordingly. Not very busy. Follow the hiking guys directions to find parking. Frontage road past fire station, turn right, go 4 wheeling for 1/4 mile. Not alot of parking so get there early. San Jacinto Peak is next. The full 19 miles!

Hiked on September 15th. Great trail conditions. I recommend driving a car with a high ground clearance as the third of the mile from highway 38 to the trailhead is not paved and deeply rutted with large rocks sticking out. A wind breaker will come in handy too. I hiked to Limber Pine this time but hope to make it all the way up next time.

hiking
1 month ago

Great challenge! On Sept 14 there still was a trickle of water at High Creek; I could have packed 4-5 lbs lighter. I did drink about 4.5 liter - in full sun it still was warm at the top. I saw about a dozen other hikers on a Friday. Weather was great, views were fairly clear, and it was another glorious day on the trail.

backpacking
1 month ago

I hiked in on Friday afternoon and passed about 6 people. Beautiful. Camped.


Hiked out Sat morning and passed about 50 people. Groups of people just stopped and you couldn’t pass. Other times slower groups saw me and would not let me pass. I also never mind people having dogs off leash ... if you can control them ... this was not the case. People also blocked other cars in at the trailhead!! Ended up annoyed.

Who wants to fight through crowds and have to deal with out of controlled dogs? I could have stayed closer to home if I wanted to have these encounters.

I used to love this trail ...

Was Limber Creek Flowing

Trail is open, I hiked it 9-8-18 and there were lots of others out there as well.
My GPS did not take me straight to road to the trailhead, I had to go up a side road past the fire station to find it. From there, it was a really bumpy dirt road. I was glad I had my SUV. Parking is limited.
The entire trail is at a pretty steady incline with multiple steep sections mixed in. A lot of it is completely exposed to the sun. Bring plenty of water. I usually don’t wear sunscreen but wish I had on this trail.
There is a view point about 2 miles from the summit with spectacular views of baldy, Gorgonio & plenty of others. Definitely worth a stop.
There are also quite a few sections surrounded by bushes with prickly ball things so it you take a pup, check their feet often or bring dog boots.
Did this hike the day after Gorgonio (not recommended) so my times were terrible but we started around 830am, summited around 145pm and got back to the car at 645pm.

Awesome hike! A good portion of the trail is shaded & some water was available. Be careful what you leave in your car, saw a black bear in the parking lot.
Just like everyone else has said, that first mile and those last couple miles to the peak will get ya. To me, all the miles in-between were relatively easy & enjoyable. For a bit I forgot I was in SoCal, it looked like the Pacific Northwest. On the way back, those miles were long, probably because I wanted back to the car.
My pup and I started at 715am & got to the peak at 145pm. It seemed to take everyone we talked to about 6-6.5 hours to summit. The way back took about 4.5 hours.

Hard hike more or less uphill for a bit over 9 miles. Water available at Vivian Creek and High Creek Camps (Sept 03, 2018). You don't need a Wilderness Permit for a day hike (but they are highly recommended to help with trail management and S&R if something goes wrong). Wilderness permits are required for all overnight hikes - they're available from the Mill Creek Visitor Center on the way in. Rangers were checking overnight permits on Sept 02, 2018. Wind can be very strong and very cold at the top - make sure you bring warm clothes!

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