It was a pleasant summer hike along the South Fork Trail to Dollar Lake. Patches of snow from Dollar Lake to Dollar Lake Saddle made the hike arduous and slow. The trail disappeared and reappeared between dollar lake saddle and dry lake view. There were times when the dirt path would be blocked by twelve vertical feet of hard pack. My buddy and I were constantly evaluating whether to go around the walls or over them. The south fork trail was completely invisible around Jepson peak to the south side of Jepson and Gorgonio. We decided to take the only visible dirt path up the ridge between Little Charlton and Jepson. The summit of Jepson was beautiful, with most of the peak exposed, and hard crusty snow pack on the north face and slightly covering the ridgeline. It was an easy stroll along the ridgeline to San Gorgonio.
This trip was tricky in the transition between Winter and Spring. More snow and we could have used snow shoes efficiently, less snow and we could have easily hiked. The constant transition between snow and trail made the hike frustrating.
"After the first glass, you see things as you wish they were. After the second, you see things as they are not. Finally, you see things as they really are, which is the most horrible thing in the world."
--Oscar Wilde on Absinthe