We had pleasant stay at the Idyllwild Inn and this morning they gave us a ride back to Saunders Meadow Road where we stopped hiking yesterday, so we could resume our hike around the Mountain Forest Fire closure.
We walked to the South Ridge Trail which rejoins the Pacific Crest Trail after climbing Tahquitz Peak.
The roads in this part of Idyllwild are pretty confusing. Here are detailed directions:
1) From Pine Ave and Saunders Meadow Road follow Pine Ave to Tahquitz View Drive.
2) Turn right on Tahquitz View Drive and follow it to an unpaved road with a sign to the South Ridge Trail.
3) Follow the unpaved road (go left when it forks) to the South Ridge Trailhead.
4) Follow the South Ridge Trail to Tahquitz Peak (and fire lookout tower) and then to the PCT.
It’s about 5.4 miles from Saunders Meadow Road to the PCT and it’s a pretty steep climb. The elevation gain about 3,300 feet which is roughly twice the gain of Humber Park to Saddle Junction. The views are spectacular.
Rejoining the PCT completed our alternate route around the Mountain Forest Fire closure (see previous two days posts). The alternate route ended up being about 24.8 miles bypassing about 19.6 miles of the PCT.
The trail reached 9,000 feet today, the highest elevations so far. We are feeling the effects of the elevation a bit today.
Photo: Spectacular views from the fire lookout tower on Tahquitz Peak.
Trail Date: Wednesday , April 16th
Mileage: 10.1 miles