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Coachella Valley Summer Night Adventures and Hikes at Cooler Elevations

Coachella Valley Summer Night Adventures and Hikes at Cooler Elevations

Friends of the Desert Mountains is offering Night Adventures in the Monument through September, providing an opportunity for families to learn about night creatures in the desert.

In addition, a variety of educational hikes are scheduled to take place above the valley floor – a great opportunity to explore the outdoors and beauty of the mountains in much cooler weather.  

Taking place at the Santa Rosa & San Jacinto Mountains National Monument Visitor Center off Highway 74 in Palm Desert, Night Adventures in the Monument is a unique opportunity to explore desert habitat after dark along the Art Smith trail.

Black lights will be provided and participants will be led by a guide to find an array of night creatures such as lizards, geckos, spiders, jackrabbits, snakes, scorpions, tarantulas, and more. Each of the Saturday adventures on June 11, June 25, and July 16 takes place at 8:45 p.m. (registration at 8:30 p.m.), with additional adventures scheduled for August 6, August 20, September 3 and September 17 starting at 8:30 p.m. (registration at 8:15 p.m.). 

RSVP’s are required for the Night Adventures. For additional information and details about the Night Adventures, or to RSVP, visit www.DesertMountains.org or call (760) 862-9984.

Friends of the Desert Mountains is also offering a variety of guided hikes for different skill levels, which will take place in different locations up Highway 74, in Idyllwild and Garner Valley, where temperatures are an average of 20 to 30 degrees cooler than the desert.

With a variety of terrain and scenery, hikers will learn something different during each of the hikes such as the history of old mining sites, the local logging industry, the effects of forest fires and restoration of wilderness habitat, the history of Idyllwild, and more.  Following are the scheduled hikes:

Pacific Crest Trail Hike, North side Highway 74

Saturday, May 28 – 8:00 AM to 11:00 AM

Hike rating is moderate at 4 miles round trip with elevation gain of 300 ft.

Learn about spring flowers.

Cedar Springs Trail

Saturday, June 4 – 8:00 AM to 1:00 PM

Hike rating is moderately strenuous at 8 miles round trip with an elevation gain of 750 ft.

Learn about forest fires and rehabilitating wildlife.

Gold Hill and Jack Shack 2

Saturday, June 18 – 8:00 AM to 12:00 PM

Hike rating is moderately strenuous at 6 miles round trip with an elevation gain of 750 ft.

Learn about old mining sites and endeavors.

Seven (7) Pines Trail/Lemon Lily Festival

Saturday, July 9 – 8:00 AM to 1:00 PM

Hike rating is strenuous at 4 miles round trip with an elevation gain of 900 ft.

Identify different pine trees and the logging industry. Following the hike, stop in Idyllwild to enjoy the Lemon Lily Festival.

Ernie Maxwell Trail

Saturday, August 13 – 8:00 AM to 11:00 AM

Hike rating is easy at 5 miles round trip with an elevation gain of 600 ft.

Learn about the town of Idyllwild.

South Ridge Trail

Saturday, August 27 – 8:00 AM to 11:00 AM

Hike rating is easy to moderate at 4 miles round trip with an elevation gain of 800 ft.

Lots of nature and scenic views.

Pacific Crest Trail Hike, Southside Highway 74

Saturday, September 10 – 8:00 AM to 12:00 PM

Hike rating is moderate at 5 miles round trip with an elevation gain of 500 ft.

See lots of late blooming flowers, and enjoy excellent views of Anza and Borrego Springs.

RSVP’s are required for the hikes. For additional information and details about each of the hikes, or to register, visit www.DesertMountains.org or call (760) 862-9984.

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