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South Ridge Trail

South Ridge Trail

South Ridge Trail

Page Type: Route

Location: California, United States, North America

Lat/Lon: 33.73530°N / 116.695°W

Object Title: South Ridge Trail

Route Type: Hiking

Season: Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Time Required: Half a day

Difficulty: Class 1

Route Quality: 
 - 2 Votes


Page By: Deb

Created/Edited: Apr 20, 2004 / May 3, 2007

Object ID: 160748

Hits: 5245 

Page Score: 72.08%  - 2 Votes 

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Once you get to Idyllwild on highway 243 turn right onto Saunders Meadow Road. Turn left on Pine Avenue, right on Tahquitz Drive, then right on South Ridge Road. Passenger cars or 4x2 trucks should be able to make it up this road to the trail head. If snow coverage is thick, park where space is available and walk to the trail head.

Route Description

Follow the well worn trail in and out of the woods, nice views of the San Gabriel Mountains and the Santa Ana Mountains can be seen on clear days to the west. About halfway up, the trail passes a flat area with lots of big boulders, this is a good area to take a break and look up at Tahquitz Peak. Keep on hiking up through beautiful forest and before you know it you will come to the fire lookout tower and the peak itself.
To summit and back via South Ridge Trail is approx 6 miles. A loop route can be made by taking the trail to Saddle Junction and on to Devil's Slide from the summit, but you'll be walking another couple of miles from Humber Park to your vehicle at South Ridge trailhead. This would equal approx 10 miles.

Essential Gear

For late Spring, Summer and Fall ascents, only sturdy hiking shoes, sunblock and plenty of water are necessary. For winter or early Spring, crampons, snowshoes and trekking poles are quite nice.

Red Tape

A National Forest Adventure Pass will be required to park, which can be purchased at the Idyllwild Ranger station or several of the local merchants for $30 annually. For another $5, a pass can be purchased for a second vehicle. Daily passes can also be purchased for $5.


On the ridgeOn the South Ridge Trail in winterAlmost there!On the traverse to Devils Slide San Jacinto Wilderness