Explore the best birding trails near Palm Springs with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

3 days ago

First went here in the 90's when it was trespassing (sorry). So beautiful. Easy short hike to a beautiful waterfall.
Took my husband and littles a few years ago. Now maintained and they charge to get in. They put a few non natural "steps" etc to help get you to the falls. Favorite time to go is spring when the water is freezing from the warmer weather and fresh snow melt.

Favorite trail in Palm Springs!! A lot of straight up climbing and rather long hike overall, but the view from the top is incredible. Highly recommend for those who like a little challenge when hiking. Pack a lot of water and go early in the day.

28 days ago

29 days ago

Wonderful walk with a chance to stand under a waterfall at the furthest point! Did at 8am with Ranger, as already 95deg F ... and it just got hotter...!

very nice run out of water by the bench. I'll conquered the summit by November.

trail running
1 month ago

Love it. I go every time I get a chance.

1 month ago

Great rock formations and a cooling off spot before or after more strenuous hikes in the other canyon areas!

Incredible hike! Must go in morning time and prep for hot weather. View at the top is amazing and makes the strenuous hike up the mountain worth it.

This is such a pretty hike, but pretty short. We started as soon as it opened; 7:30am. Since its summer, the entrance fee is only $5 per adult. It's very easy but has some steps, which could become strenuous for anyone that isn't able to climb many stairs. The waterfall is absolutely beautiful and it's pretty chilly, but you get used to it after a minutes or so.

DO NOT TRY THIS HIKE UNLESS YOU ARE IN BALLER SHAPE! If you can't comfortably run a marathon or jog all of mt baldy, this is dangerous and is not with the helicopter rescue. Also, do not do this hike during the day. The heat will melt you and make it miserable.

My experience: got to the museum around 5pm, left immediately. It was 111 degrees when we started. Had about 40 lbs on me, about 6 liters of water, snacks, some other random stuff. Around 8 pm it cooled down and became awesome. The moonlight guided us the entire way. Managed to slam the first 8,000 ft of elevation gain by about 1am. The trail is easy to follow. It was 33 degrees up there, and windy. Took a little nap at the ranger station, and at 3am cruised up to the peak. Watched sunrise from the summit, words can't explain! There is a reason John Muir calls the 'the most spectacular view god gave to man', and he calls everyone out from the grave by saying 'you aren't a mountaineer if you haven't done the cactus to clouds trail...'. You really can't appreciate this hike unless you start from the bottom. It was incredible watching the lights of Palm Springs slowly fade into the distance while grinding through the night. My feet got some gnarly blisters but beyond that our legs were pretty happy so we did the entire hike back down. Total distance, over 35 miles, total net elevation gain, nearly 25,000 ft according to my watch. Took about 17 hours of hiking, plus a nap and a nap at the peak. I didn't take any breaks going up or down and I suggest you don't either, keep your momentum going.

Result: a special accomplishment and sense of pride knowing you did the 'hardest/most elevation gain day hike in America'. And some gnarly blisters. Body feels great though. Being 21 kicks ass sometimes.

Advice: DO NOT try to do cactus to clouds to cactus if you aren't into suffering a little. Take the tram down and enjoy. Also if you do take the tram down, arrange some ride from the tram to the museum. Also, don't be a Judas and raid the emergency boxes... don't even try this if you're gonna rely upon those boxes. Carry your own water and suck it up if you get thirsty. Thirsty is not an emergency. Also, again, DO THIS OVERNIGHT. It's amazing! And protect your skin. 6 liters of water should be enough just hydrate before. And no matter what, you're gonna blister, so suck up the pain and smile, and enjoy a badass hike. And leave your phone at home, pictures won't do it justice and you can't enjoy the summit without doing the hike so just be free and off the grid and enjoy.

Good luck!