Marion Mountain

Page Type
California, United States, North America
Route Type:
Time Required:
Most of a day

Route Quality: 11 Votes

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Marion Mountain
Created On: Nov 21, 2001
Last Edited On: May 1, 2002


The Marion Mountain trailhead can be reached off of CA 243 a few miles north of Idyllwild. There are signs indicating where to turn for the Fern Basin and Marion Mountain campgrounds. Follow them. The trailhead begins on road 4S71 between the campgrounds.

Route Description

The Marion Mountain Trail is the shortest route to the summit of Mt. San Jacinto. It is fairly steep with an elevation gain of 4,600 feet in 5.7 miles. From the trailhead the Marion Mountain Trail climbs relentlessly for 2.5 miles to the junction with the Deer Springs Trail, where the trail ends. Go north on the Deer Springs Trail and soon the junction with the Seven Pines Trail is reached. Continue on the Deer Springs Trail to Little Round Valley. After passing through Little Round Valley and assending several switchbacks the junction with the short trail leading to the summit is reached. Follow this to the summit boulders and scramble to the high point.

Essential Gear

Water. Winter gear if hiking during the winter.

Miscellaneous Info

If you have information about this route that doesn't pertain to any of the other sections, please add it here.

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Steve Ball

Steve Ball - Oct 19, 2004 12:57 pm - Hasn't voted

Route Comment

If you take the Marion Mountain trail in the winter beaware that it is the less traveled route up the mountain. I did it once in april got up above the snow line (8,000ft) and lost the trail. There were only one set of tracks and they stopped shortly after they reached the snow. It took me an extra two hours to reach the top.

elellilrah - May 31, 2005 1:09 pm - Hasn't voted

Route Comment

Went up Memorial Day 2005. With 6' of snow on the upper half of the trail, the trip was dictated by GPS route-finding and cross-country travel. There were a line of tracks heading up Marion Mountain and nothing past the cutoff toward San Jacinto peak so it was a snow slog the whole way. There are several sections of trail that have stairs due to steepness, similar to coming up Sawtooth or Franklin pass out of Mineral King, Sequoia NP. If you're not in shape, you won't make it.

It took me 6 hours to make the peak, 4 hours to return due to having no trail for 3 miles each way up the steepest part of the mountain. The views are awesome and you gain elevation quick enough to notice the sky darkening every mile.

Alex Wood

Alex Wood - Jan 30, 2009 1:28 am - Voted 8/10


The Marion Mountain Trail is closed until mid April according to the ranger station.

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