Ascent of San Jacinto Peak on 2008-12-07

Climber: Jeff Goodman

Others in Party:Josh Hocieniec
Date:Sunday, December 7, 2008
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:San Jacinto Peak
    Elevation:10839 ft / 3303 m

Ascent Trip Report

Trainwreck. Buddy and I were training for the Backbone Hiking trail in Ventura County. So we quickly ran out of local trails to walk the distances need to condition for the 68 mile, three day hike. For our 12 mile conditioning hike I chose Mt. San Jacinto 12 mile from tram to peak out and back. Buddy check the weather for Palm Springs (60 deg F) not the mountain (30 deg F). So in shorts with no warming layers we set off to the peak. We did not calculate the effects of being over 10,000 feet would have on our walking time, as well as the up hill climb. Also, buddy did not bring food.
Crampons were recommneded, but we did not have them.
Thank god for the user-stocked cabin on the peak. We arrived one hour from sunset with massive headaches and fatigue. We ate and drank from the stores in the cabin and he wore a blanket as a coat.
Sun set on us on the way down. Snow and a 3/4 moon gave us decent illumination of the trail. I slipped on ice once, disloging my tailbone. Chiropactor was able to fix it that next Wednesday. We arrived at the tram 15mins before the last lift of the night. There had been a tree lighting ceremony and the light was a welcome beacon that brought us in the last two miles in the cold and dark. There was a choir that was part of the lighting that sang the whole trip down. Very surreal and nice as my buddy and I fought shock from the cooling sweat as we sat on the floor of the tram.
There is a saying in the Marine infantry; "It's easy to hard, hard to be smart."
That was an accomplishment I am proud to have completed and I vow not to repeat mistakes. This year I have changed from distance hiking to hiking mountians. Should be fun.
Next trip up San Jacinto we will approach from Idlewile and bring stuff to restock the cabin as payment for what we used.
Summary Total Data
    Distance:11 mi / 17.7 km
    Trailhead:Palm Springs Aerial Tramway  
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail, Snow on Ground
    Gear Used:
Hut Camp
    Nights Spent:0 nights away from roads
    Weather:Snowing, Cold, Calm, Partly Cloudy
Clouds moved through, light snowing

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