there are a couple of hikes that people have asked about but i’ve never posted on here…until now…
one of these is san gorgonio via vivian creek. i hiked this just over two years ago with my friends victor, louie, and tony. vivian creek is one of the toughest ways up to the summit of san g. san g is the tallest summit in socal. you get the picture.
we picked up our day use permit at the mill creek ranger station on the way to the trailhead. the ranger station is helpful and they regulate the traffic on san g. call ahead for guaranteed permits. if i remember right, they’re free.
anywho, we parked the car in the paved lot adjacent the powerfully flowing river. if memory serves, we arrived somewhere right around 8am or so. we trekked the first half mile through the riverbed following pink flags that denoted the detoured trail. the detour linked up with the real trail and we began the worst part of the trail: a mile of extremely steep switchbacks. i hiked this before i had my 310xt (i had an hrm only, no gps), but i’d guess this was 1200 feet or so of ascent. at least it felt like it. on the upshot, however, we reached the top of the switchbacks (“hellish switchbacks” as louie called them) and followed the now very gradual trail through grassland and deciduous terrain. this part of the hike goes for awhile and is very manageable. after 5 or 6 miles, we reached a spring which denoted the start of steep gain again. this is where you want to fill up on water, as you will not have any more water sources until you come back down. if memory serves, this was around the 8k’ level or so. we went up 10-15 looooooooong switchbacks and finally reached a nice ridge that gave us our first amazing view of the valley east and facing the summit. here, we turned left and followed a long and barren ridge up to the very summit. beware: there are a few false summits…but keep pressing on. the summit payoff is worth it. the summit of san g is a windy, windswept pile of rocks with a view that overlooks arizona and the sierras on clear days. 11,500′ of victory!
stats on the hike:
time: 10 hours
distance: 18.2 miles
elevation gain: 6,000 feet? 7000 feet? I just don’t remember exactly.
water consumed: 5L (and every drop of it)
electrolytes consumed: 1L of gatorade
calories burned: 12000
calories consumed: 1200 (shot bloks, GORP, gatorade, assorted others)
weather: 65-85 degrees, super windy at the top. in the winter this summit can be extremely treacherous.