Early Beginingslast adventure and trips that I had planned prior to this just didn't work out due to being sick or scheduling issues. Finally, everything seemed to work out. Me and my friend Matt decided to make an attempt on San Jacinto and then see how many other peaks we could throw in along the way. Our plan was to take the Marion Mountain Trail up and do San Jacinto. Plan B was to take Humber Park up to San Jacinto.
Another reason for this trip was to try out my new gear. For Christmas, I had gotten crampons, a Spot Satellite Messenger, an ice axe, new boots and a new daypack. So I had been dying to try them out. I had all my gear, but the only thing was, my friend Matt didn't have any crampons. At Sports Chalet, he found a little four point crampon that fits in the center of your boot. I wasn't so sure if they would work, but we would give them a shot.
The Day ArrivesWe had decided to meet at 4:30 at his house and then he was going to drive us up. Unfortunately, I had set my alarm to 4:00 pm instead of am. Luckily, I had been waking up every hour or so just in case.
We left his house around 5:00am and begin the drive from Temecula to Idyllwild. Right from the start, we both knew it was going to be a beautiful day (weather wise). I was thinking that it would be really crowed up there especially since it was MLK Day.
After a quick break, we began the next portion of the trail. I knew from here that the trail was going to be hard to find, which it was. Luckily people had hiked it before, but it was only easy to follow cause of the people who didn't have crampons. We lost the trail about two times, but then managed to find it because of the markings on the trees. However, our luck ran short. Just before the junction between the Wellman Divide Trail and the PCT, we lost the trail entirely. After searching around for half an hour, we gave up and headed up to a high point that I knew was right above us. However, in the process of trying to find the trail, my friend popped out his shoulder that he had dislocated during his football season. We struggled up to the top and then got our position easily. The trail was easy to spot, but it was looking like my friend Matt wasn't going anywhere else. The goal of San Jacinto seemed far off and impossible.After taking in the views for about 20 minutes, I proposed that Matt stay on top of this peak while I try and tackle Marion Mountain. After much deliberating, he decided that this would work. He could rest up his shoulder while I got my need for peak bagging out of the way. I left him with my cell phone while I took my Spot personal locater. I left around 11:45am.
It was on the way down that I learned just how sharp crampons are. I ripped at least five holes in my pants and then put a gash in my left leg. So I began to take it easy. The snow was annoying once more. You could scree slide in some of the snow, which made it go by really fast, but then, you would reach a hard section and almost fall face first because the crampons would catch on ice. I reached back to where Matt was around 1:40. After catching my breath, we decided to call it a day and head back. Finding the trail was easy on the way back. Nothing else really happened. We took our time worked our way down and took a few little shortcuts here and there. We made it down back to Humber Park around 4:30ish. We had only seen one lady taking a little walk on the trail on the way down close to Humber Park. But other then that, we had only seen 2 groups of people the whole day, and that was all around the trail head. The solitude was really nice.
After hanging around for another half hour, we decided to call it a day and head home. On the way back, we witnessed another amazing sunset. It seems like they always get better. We took a breather at Taco Bell and then made it back to Matt's house. What a day.
ReflectingI always have these huge goals for hikes, and lately, they seem a little out of reach. However, they all seem to work out nicely no matter what. I was happy with making it up to Marion, and also to newly named Cienaga Peak. Aside from Matt's shoulder, everything went smoothly. We had the all the right gear this time to. Matt's little four point 30$ crampons worked out amazingly and made me wonder why I had to get 150$ 12 point crampons. Oh well. We came back in one piece. Also, my parents were thrilled with the Spot Tracking system. Hopefully they will let me out more because of it.
Thanks for reading, hope you enjoyed the trip report.