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Marion Mountain to San Jacinto [CLOSED]

hard(712)
Mount San Jacinto State Park

Marion Mountain to San Jacinto is a 13.1 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Idyllwild-Pine Cove, California that features a river and is only recommended for very experienced adventurers. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from June until October.

Distance: 13.1 miles Elevation Gain: 4,520 feet Route Type: Out & Back

backpacking

camping

hiking

nature trips

snowshoeing

bird watching

running

forest

river

views

wild flowers

wildlife

bugs

over grown

rocky

scramble

closed

no dogs

To prevent the spread of COVID-19 there is currently no vehicle access to this trail or others in the park. See here for more info: https://www.parks.ca.gov/?page_id=30355 Full day hike! Definitely separates the avid from the casual hikers, this is one hike you want to be acclimated for, or allow extra time to reach the peak. If there's a hint of bad weather, make sure you are prepared for it with at least a windbreaker. You need to get a permit to enter the San Jacinto Wilderness. Get it from the station in Idyllwild. Day permits are also available at the Stone Creek Campground for this hike. There is a kiosk to the right just before you enter the campground registration area. Permits are unlimited, and they are free for day hiking. There are several routes up San Jacinto. Most people take the Palm Springs Aerial Tram up from the desert floor and begin their journey in Long Valley. The lesser-travelled Marion Mountain trail skips the tram, beginning a few miles north of Idyllwild. It's the shortest route up Mt. San Jacinto. It's also steep, climbing over 4,000 feet in under 6 miles.

hiking
snow
2 days ago

Sunday March 29th, 2020 I started around 7am to give myself extra time to summit. And I knew this would give me hard packed snow for awhile. As soon as you pass the Marion Mountain campgrounds the trail has sparse snow here and there. And it's pretty hard packed most the way to Little Round Valley campground. Almost immediately after the campground the snow is deep and soft. I encountered some postholing but not bad. In this section you can use snowshoes but they would be awkward to carry for such little use. Going up I didnt need micro spikes or crampons. I summited a little after 1pm. My conditioning was poor and I'm pretty much out of hiking shape so it would be nothing to shave an hour or more of that time. Coming down I wore micro spikes, but should have worn crampons. And the postholing was worst. But not to the point of being bad. Great hike. Summiting San Jacinto in March was simply amazing. It was so beautiful. The whole hike took me 10 hours which I was actually okay with. I'd say the most important gear to have right now would be sunglasses. And probably sunblock.

hiking
off trail
snow
26 days ago

Still lots of snow on this trail, but still completed with microspikes. Current conditions did not require crampons or snowshoes. Started at 630am completed around 2pm. Followed previous hikers foot steps through snow which lead straight up to the peak, no switch backs. Much harder that way than regular trail during the summer months. This is always such a fun trail.

hiking
snow
1 month ago

Did the trail on 02/15/20. We started at 8am and finished at 7pm. The trail is about 95% covered in snow. Starting at 8am gave us firm snow conditions only for about an hour or two. Starting from about 8,000ft or a mile before the PCT junction the snow got super soft. We were lucky a gentleman we saw on the summit had put in a boot track the entire way for us (we were the only three on the trail and to summit from Marion mt trail this day). Unfortunately, warming temps made even the boot track very soft. We spent the better part of the last 3 miles and 3,000+ ft up postholing (often knee deep up to waist deep) making our progress VERY slow. The boot track cut off the last 1.5 miles and 1,000ft of elevation and just went straight up the side of the mountain. We ended up cutting off 3/4 of a mile going straight up. Summited in just over 6 hours from the car (including rest stops). On the way down, the snow was even softer so we opted for the switchback route. Unfortunately that boot track was likely from before the storm this past mon/tues so travel was slow and full of waist-deep postholes. At this point we decided the boot track wasn’t doing us any favors and brought out our snow shoes for the first time of the day. This saved us easily over an hour in the descent as we just cut every switchback and didn’t have to worry about postholes as much. The only downside to snowshoes on a steep slope in soft powder is they tend to turn in short skis. My friend and I came prepared with ice axe, micro spikes and crampons, snow shoes, trekking poles, etc. if we had to do it over again we would have put the snow shoes on starting at the pct junction going up as well. Crampons and ice axe were not needed at all due to our late start and soft conditions. No avy risk at all. Doing this mountain was a real wake up call for us! Haven’t moved that slow due to shit snow conditions in years! Happy climbing all

hiking
rocky
1 month ago

Did this trail twice in late August of 2018 with my girlfriend. Did not anticipate the difficulty/length AT ALL. She and I are both in great physical shape but the first time around we didn’t start the trail until about 11. By the time we were within a mile of the peak we were starving (not enough snacks), physically drained, and running out of sunlight. The second time around, we started hiking at about 9 and had PLENTY of time at the peak to hang out. Overall, a beautiful trail with a nice technical challenge due to the steepness and rockiness in some areas. Highly recommend if you’re the type of person that wants to avoid the touristy foot traffic of the lift on the Palm Springs side (we stayed in Palm Strings but drove around just to avoid all of that).

hiking
off trail
snow
1 month ago

This trail kicked our butts! We started at about 8:30am and got back to the parking lot just after the sun set (which was breathtaking). We were lucky to have beautiful weather all day, but even with many sets of footprints to follow in the snow, we got off trail several times and had to stop to rest more than we usually do. The view at the top is absolutely beautiful. Very very windy up there though, so we we only stayed for a minute before heading back down. The snow melt and slush in the afternoon sun made the way back down super slippery. We would never have made it without our micro spikes, and we were wishing we had brought snow shoes as well as trekking poles. Happy to have completed this one especially at this time of year! Start early. Take your time. Be prepared for a brutal day! So worth it in the end though!!

hiking
off trail
snow
1 month ago

This trail kicked our butts! We started at about 8:30am and got back to the parking lot just after the sun set (which was breathtaking). We were lucky to have beautiful weather all day, but even with many sets of footprints to follow in the snow, we got off trail several times and had to stop to rest more than we usually do. The view at the top is absolutely beautiful. Very very windy up there though, so we we only stayed for a minute before heading back down. The snow melt and slush in the afternoon sun made the way back down super slippery. We would never have made it without our micro spikes, and we were wishing we had brought snow shoes as well as trekking poles. Happy to have completed this one especially at this time of year! Start early. Take your time. Be prepared for a brutal day! So worth it in the end though!!

hiking
off trail
snow
1 month ago

Started at 730. At the peak at 1345. Started down at 1430. Back at the trail head at 1830. Along with 2 friends. Compacted snow along the trail after the first hour. Micro spikes needed. Snow shoes, if you want to blaze your own trail... Fun day...

hiking
icy
off trail
snow
2 months ago

Fifth time up this trail but first time in winter. Climbed today 1/22. Trail was easy to follow up to Little Round Valley. I don’t think anyone has gone up that way since the last storm. I wore spikes from about 7k feet on and put snowshoes on just before Little Round Valley. There is now a very clear snowshoe trail from LRV up to the summit. Spikes will make most of the trail much quicker and will help a ton on the descent. I wouldn’t have summited without snowshoes, I was postholing even with them, especially on the way down from the summit. Snow got really soft and slushy in the afternoon. I love this trail and it’s a whole other animal with snow - just be ready for a long day. Water was flowing in 3 spots, best and last option before the summit is after you join deer creek trail before you get up to LRV. Very obvious since you have to cross it.

hiking
icy
off trail
snow
2 months ago

This was definitely a hard trail to follow when covered in snow. First 3 miles had one pair of footprints to follow. After that, I relied only on the AllTrails GPS map. Also thankful I brought snowshoes. The last 4 miles was knee deep snow or more almost the entire time and it would’ve all been post-holing without snowshoes. Beautiful sunny day, but high winds (15mph) in the afternoon. I reached the summit around 2pm and the winds were so strong at the summit I could barely keep myself standing up. Definitely a beautiful view on all sides though and well worth the effort.

2 months ago

I hiked this trail during September and it absolutely kicked my butt all the way to the top! I believe it took me and my group about 6 hours going up. Beautiful trail and the views were definitely worth it though! It got dark about a mile from being finished so was a little tricky finding the parking lot so just start really early if you've never done the trail to give yourself extra time.

hiking
3 months ago

Hiked on 14-Dec-19 with a friend. 4th time. But 1st in last 15 years. :-) Started at 8 am and back down at 9 pm. Took a wrong turn that took us along PCT on the way down. Retraced and lost an hour. Had to share head lamp that slowed us down after dark. Fantastic hike. Best views in SoCal for this short a hike...

hiking
3 months ago

雪太厚了 找不到路 就回了 穿暖花开在来

hiking
4 months ago

Did this hike a week ago! Enjoyed the hike and the views at the top! The way out felt like it took forever— potentially due to taking a few (six) wrong turns.

hiking
icy
4 months ago

hiking
icy
rocky
snow
4 months ago

Started at Marion trail... no trail due to snow took me about 6 hours up! Rested 4 times and 4:15 hrs to come down! Took longer going up than I expected. Will due it again views were amazing.

4 months ago

Great! it was a really nice hike, yesterday it was the first time I hiked Mount San Jacinto via Marion trail even though I hiked before via the Tram, I must say that it's a little more demanding than Mount Baldy but it's only my opinion. right now there is two tiny streams of water at two thirds on the way to the Summit. The only sad think for me I lost my watch on my way up but the best thing I connected with amazing RNs from St Mary's Hospital and for me that's hiking about to connect with people that share the same things like I do. Happy Trails to All of you. Maurizio.

hiking
4 months ago

Completed on 11/13/19 This was a great trail that I can’t wait to come back and do again. It’s a steady uphill climb with a few switchbacks and even fewer non vertical walking paths. I took this trail for my first time summiting San Jacinto, and I’m truly glad I opted out of the aerial tramway. The views on the way up were amazing! There were a few sections where I thought the bugs were going to be an issue, but they ended up going away the higher I got. You can also use this trail to backpack on, but you will need permission to use designated camping sites along the way. There is an outhouse that you can find on the AllTrails map that you really can’t miss while you are on trail. The very end is an easy rock scramble to the summit. If you have done Cucamonga Peak or Mount Baldy (San Antonio) than you can for sure do this trail. The extra elevation really makes you feel accomplished at the end. Add me on Instagram: @InfiniteMountainPursuits

hiking
rocky
scramble
4 months ago

Trail is still in great condition. Cold and crisp in the morning, still a great hike until the snow starts coming down

hiking
rocky
4 months ago

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