Page Type Page Type: Mountain/Rock
Location Lat/Lon: 33.67110°N / 116.3427°W
Additional Information GPX File: Download GPX » View Route on Map
Activities Activities: Mountaineering
Seasons Season: Winter
Additional Information Elevation: 2226 ft / 678 m
Sign the Climber's Log


East/southeast face of Indio Mountain from La Quinta, California
Rank: Indio Mountain is California’s 8859th highest ranked peak Prominence: 726 ft Indio Mountain rises above the community of La Quinta near Indio/Palm Springs in southern California. No trail goes to the summit of Indio Mountain. From The streets of la Quinta, I went up a valley/canyon to a 1820 ft high saddle to the north of Indio Mountain. On my way, I ran into a dry waterfall that required some hand and foot climbing to bypass. From the saddle, easy walkup led me to the summit. For the return trip, I headed south from the summit of Indio Mountain bypassing the slopes of Point 2121 ft to the west of it until I reached a 1500 ft saddle between Indio Mountain and Coyote benchmark. I was then able to hike back to the starting place to create a 7.5 mile loop hike. The summit of Indio Mountain provides you with fantastic views of urban sprawl in Coachella Valley. Major peaks of the area such as San Jacinto and San Gorgonio will also be in good view.

Getting There

A good place to park is at the designated parking area for Bear Creek Canyon Trail in La Quinta, CA (you will obviously not be following Bear Creek Trail). From I-10 near Palm Springs, take Exit 139 to Jefferson St. and drive 5.75 miles south. Turn right (west) onto Avenue 52 and go 2.5 miles then turn left (south) onto Avenida Bermudas. Go to the end of the development where you will see designated parking areas on the left.


Starting Point Elevation: 310 ft Elevation at Lowest Point: 190 ft Summit Elevation: 2226 ft Distance: 7.5 miles loop hike as shown on map This is a description of my counterclockwise loop hike as shown on the map. From the parking area, I headed west hiking along Calle Tecate Street to a concrete pathway know as Fred Wolff Bear Creek Trail. Turned north and followed the concrete pathway downhill until I could see the 1820 ft saddle to the north of Indio Mountain to my northwest. I left the concrete pathway, headed west crossing a dry wash and going on a boulder covered flood plain.
Indio Mountain on the left
Indio Mountain on the left
Continued northwest toward the 1820 ft saddle.
1820 ft saddle1820 ft saddle
The plain tapered to a canyon.
At an elevation of 800 ft, I reached a dry waterfall creating an impassible barrier to me.
Dry waterfallDry Waterfall
Went up the rocky slopes on the left (southeast) side of the canyon and climbed a 5 ft tall wall to a catwalk that allowed me to bypass the dry waterfall. Looking down at the dry fall from the catwalk.
Bypassing the dry waterfallDry waterfall from the catwalk
The boulder filled canyon continued beyond the dry waterfall .
Canyon after the dry waterfall
Canyon near the 1820 ft saddle
Looking back at La Quinta.
La QuintaLooking back at La Quinta
Horn on the slopes of Indio Mountain.
Horn near the summit of Indio Mountain
I then reached the broad 1820 ft saddle. Looking north toward Point 2100 ft and Eisenhower Mountain.
1820 ft saddle1820 ft saddle
Went up the slopes to reach the summit of Indio Mountain which turned out to be a large area with many piles of boulders reminiscent of what I had seen in Joshua Tree National Park. It was hard to say which pile was the summit.
Summit of Indio Mountain
Views from the summit of Indio Mountain.
Indio and La QuintaLa Quinta & Indio
Eisenhower Mtn & Point 2100 ftEisenhower Mountain & Point 2100 ft
Mt. San GorgonioMt. San Gorgonio
Mt. San JacintoMt. San Jacinto
Palm CanyonPalm Canyon
Martinez & Santa Rosa MountainsMartinez & Santa Rosa Mountains
For the return, from the summit of Indio Mountain, I headed south along the ridgetop toward Points 2180 and 2121 ft.
On the ridgeline south of the summitCoyote Benchmark & Point 2180 ft
Looking back at Indio Mountain.
Summit of Indio Mountain
La Quinta and Point 2180 ft from the saddle between Indio Mountain and Point 2180 ft.
La Quinta & Point 2180 ftPoint 2180 ft
I then began traversing the western slopes of Points 2180 and 2121 ft.
Traversing the slopes of Point 2121 ft
Traversing the slopes of Point 2121 ft
Looking west at Mt. San Jacinto.
Mt. San Jacinto
I then reached the 1500 ft saddle between Point 2121 ft and Coyote Benchmark. Looking southeast toward La Quinta.
From the 1500 ft saddle
From the saddle, I followed a faint trail toward the dry wash and Fred Wolff Bear Creek trail. La Quinta and Peak 1601 ft.
La Quinta and Peak 1601 ftLa Quinta & Peak 1601 ft

Red Tape

No fees or permits needed.

When to Climb

Winter is the best time to climb. summer can get dangerously hot.