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Spitler Peak
  • Spitler Peak
  • Garner Valley, CA 92561

Ready to reach new heights? The journey to Spitler Peak, a favorite among experienced hikers and equestrians, begins almost 5,000 feet above sea level and scales another 3,645 feet in all, winding through diverse desert and mountain habitat before encountering steep switchbacks over rocky terrain. Rated difficult for its sharp incline and full sun exposure, the 10.7-mile out-and-back trail can be equally hard to find — from Highway 74, turn onto Apple Canyon Road and park along the unpaved shoulder about 2.5 miles in. The trailhead is on the right (and be sure to pick up a free wilderness permit at the Idyllwild Ranger Station before setting out). Once you’ve reached the Desert Divide, turn right onto the Pacific Crest Trail and pause for magnificent views of the valleys on either side. Continue another one-third of a mile and take a right onto the path leading up to the top of Spitler Peak. Though traces of the 2013 Mountain Fire still linger in these parts of the San Bernardino National Forest, the breathtaking beauty and solitude of the alpine backcountry still beckons.

Total Distance: 10.7 miles

Level: Difficult

Hiking Features
  • Distance (mi): 10.7
  • Distance (km): 17.2
  • Difficulty Score: 25
  • Route Type: Out and back
  • Elevation at Trailhead: 4928
  • Elevation Gain (+): 3645
  • Elevation Loss (-): 3645
  • Net Elev +/- (ft): 3645
  • Net Elev +/- (m): 1111
  • Minimum Elevation: 4929
  • Maximum Elevation: 7434
  • Elevation Change-lowest point to highest point ft: 2505
  • Parking Type: Unpaved shoulder
  • Location: San Jacinto Mountains
  • Sub-Location: Idyllwild/Garner Valley
  • Dogs Allowed:
  • Horses Allowed:
  • Permit Required:
  • 6 - 10 Miles:
  • Free:
Trail Length
  • 6 - 10 Miles:
Spitler Peak
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