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Mount San Jacinto State Park – Tree Cross Section
Last week I went to Palm Springs, California for ESRI’s 2011 DevSummit, a conference for developers of ESRI software products, and decided to go up the Palm Springs Tramway in Mount San Jacinto State Park just a short cab ride away. The tramway takes you from the base at just over 2,000 ft above sea level to over 8,500 ft.
Once at the top, there are more than 54 miles of trails with year-round activities such as hiking, snow shoeing and camping. There is also a Ranger station in the Mountain Station where you can obtain the necessary permits and trail maps for such activities.
Walking the trails provides with unparalleled vistas pretty much everywhere you look. Going to the observation balconies of the Mountain Station provides stunning vistas of the several cities that inhabit the Coachella Valley below: Palm Springs, Cathedral City, Desert Hot Springs and Palm Desert to name a few.
To fully enjoy the view, you must of course be prepared for the weather conditions at the top and pack and extra layer accordingly. The temperature difference between the valley floor and the top of the Tram is usually 30 degrees F. Being comfortable and dressing appropriately for the conditions can make all the difference in the world.