Help keep our trails and parks open during COVID-19 by committing to social distancing. Some trails or park services may be closed this weekend so check with local authorities before heading out.
Learn more

Spitler Peak Trail is a 12.3 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Mountain Center, California that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

Distance: 12.3 miles Elevation Gain: 3,277 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dog friendly

camping

hiking

nature trips

bird watching

forest

views

wild flowers

wildlife

Directions from Idyllwild, CA: Drive south on Highway 243 and take the left fork on Highway 74 towards Lake Hemet. Just prior to Lake Hemet, turn left on Apple Canyon Road at the Herkey Creek Campground. From the campground it is about 2 miles to the parking area for Spitler Peak Trail.

hiking
18 days ago

Glorious wildflowers, biting flies!

hiking
bugs
rocky
2 months ago

Great trail went to Apache mountain and spitler. Got to sign the book

hiking
over grown
10 months ago

hiking
bugs
muddy
no shade
off trail
over grown
rocky
scramble
washed out
10 months ago

hiking
over grown
private property
rocky
Fri Jan 18 2019

I used this trail to get me from Fobes to the PCT Junction since I couldn’t find Fobes to Spitler. May very we’ll be a good reason!

Sat Sep 29 2018

Trailhead difficult to find, completely exposed the whole way up, first three miles moderate, last 2 miles strenuous.

hiking
Sun Jun 24 2018

It was hard to tell the difference between this hike and Apache but from what it appears on the trail they are the same hike that leads to a plateau- you can choose to go Left and hike Apache or Right and hike Spilter. We went up to the fork and stopped for lunch and our GPS gave us 11.3 miles. Went on 6/9/18 and it was a nice hike. One review stated there was a waterfall which is really a trickle of drops and hardly a waterfall. The beginning of the hike starts fairly mild and without shade, trail is sandy and not much incline. At the stream which is around 4 miles in it begins to incline steeply and there is a lot of brush and shade as the foliage is thicker here. The trail gets much more narrow and rocky. Excellent views at the top. Much of the trees were burned so the underbrush is thriving now. Great hike.

Sun Apr 29 2018

I just love this trail!!!! Haven't hiked it since the fire but, from what I am reading It seems to be open! I am beyond excited!

hiking
Tue Jan 30 2018

Did this hike on 1/26/18 for the first time since the Mountain fire. Have done it a few times in the past including a shuttle starting at the Zen trail and over Apache. Always have loved the Spitler trail for the variety of foliage and views, especially from the PCT into the desert. The burn was devastating. Almost nothing left behind. The only living trees were on the upper east slopes of Spitler A little looking about to find the use trail to the top. Still a worthwhile hike that I would recommend. PCT closed toward Apache.

Sun Dec 03 2017

Hiked 12/2/17. Weather was perfect. Would not want to do this hike in the middle of summer. We hiked up Spitler Trail , to PCT, then south on PCT and down to our shuttle parked at Cedar Springs Trailhead. A little more than 14 miles. It took us about 7 hours to complete. The PCT is currently closed North of where Spitler Peak and the PCT meet. I would consider this a hard hike (seemed most of Trail was uphill) for someone not working out regularly.

hiking
Sun Nov 26 2017

The Spitler Peak Trail is now open as of Thanksgiving week. I hiked 3.13 miles of the trail on Thanksgiving day. The trail itself is in excellent condition but the loss of all the red shanks and trees means even less shade than before the Mountain Fire. Still great views and lots of interesting plants for botanists.

hiking
Sat Apr 23 2016

Did this hike back in 2011. It was a very rewarding hike with incredible views at the top overlooking Lake Hemet in one direction and the entire Coachella Valley in the other. I was sad to see that fire had destroyed the area. I hope it will be reopened and restored some day in the future so others can enjoy this great hike.

hiking
Mon Sep 01 2014

This trail is closed due to fire damage. http://www.fs.usda.gov/recmain/sbnf/recreation

hiking
3 days ago

hiking
12 days ago

recorded Spitler Peak Trail

hiking
1 month ago

hiking
2 months ago

hiking
2 months ago

hiking
3 months ago

recorded Hurkey Creek

hiking
3 months ago

Showing results 1 - 20 of 30