Do I need a permit?

General Palm Springs area.

Do I need a permit?

Postby rafael » Mon Jun 05, 2006 11:46 pm

I will climb San Jacinto on Thursday June 8. The hike will be from the tram to the summit. I have never hiked it before and I was wondering if I need to get a permit at the ranger station that is west of the tram? Will 3 liters of water be enough? Are there places along the trail to refill? Is filtering needed or is it pretty clean? Please help, I have a 4 hour drive from Bakersfield just to get there so I need to know the logistics in order to have a successful trip. Thanks.

Rafael...
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Postby AlanK » Tue Jun 06, 2006 7:42 am

To hike to the summit from the tram, you need to fill out one of the self-issue permits at the ranger station near the tram. It's no problem.

I have never used more than a couple of liters of water on that hike. Everyone is different on that front, of course, but three sounds like plenty.

There is water running out of the spigot at Round Valley.
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Postby robpollard » Tue Jun 06, 2006 9:02 am

I've read that its recommended to filter the water from the spigot at Round Valley, and always do. I don't know if its necessary or not.
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Postby AlanK » Tue Jun 06, 2006 10:40 am

Good point. I have certainly seen many people mention that as well. If I planned on using that water, I would either take a filter or at least call the Ranger Station to see what they recommend.
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Postby Guest » Tue Jun 06, 2006 11:24 am

There is a sign at Round Valley by the water pipe that says Purify All Water. The park service will tell you to purify all water anywhere in the wilderness except the Tram Station. Though many people say that they have been drinking the water at Round Valley for years with no trouble, the park service will never assume the liability and tell you not to purify it first. I personally never would risk it.

The problem is Round Valley is the only reliable water source and from my experience, it's too early in the hike to use as the hike to/from the Tram Station is easy and quick with frequent shade of trees. Its the steep slopes above Round Valley that are exposed to the sun and really drain you. But after Round Valley, there isn't really any reliable water except snow and thats pretty much all gone by now. Its best to just carry all your water with you from the start. Also an early start is best as you avoid the heat of the day which requires carrying more water. My personal opinion is 3 Liters should be more then enough unless its a unusually hot day.
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Round Valley water

Postby AsABat » Tue Jun 06, 2006 9:03 pm

Asking the ranger what they recommend and what they do may result in two different answers. In many places like this the water is not tested or chlorinated or ??? so the "offiical" word becomes purify the water. While I am usually very diligent about filtering I have never filtered water from that spigot. YMMV.
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Postby zippetydude » Tue Jun 06, 2006 9:52 pm

There was a brief discussion thread about filtering on the San G bulletin board about a year ago. While many people are very cautious and filter every drop, it seems quite a few don't seem to use a filter at all and suffer no ill effects.

I haven't filtered water from a briskly flowing stream in the last few years, (I'm out in the wilderness about once a week - multiply this by, say, 5 years, and we're looking at a couple hundred times...) and I have never encountered any problem whatsoever. I would be surprised if you actually got giardia or some such bug from the spigot in Round Valley. But, like the previous posts said, the tram station is so close, if you're at all doubtful about it, it's easy enough to carry the water from there.

Hope you have fun while you're down here from Bakersfield.

z
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thanks for the info.

Postby rafael » Tue Jun 06, 2006 10:35 pm

Thanks for the info. I'm a water hog. I like to carry extra just in case and most of my hikes end up being in dry places where you need a minimum of 4-5 liters. Looks like I will have to postpone the hike, a family emergency came up but San Jacinto is a must do for this year for me so I'll catch it in a few weeks.

Rafael...
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Postby phydeux » Wed Jun 07, 2006 8:24 pm

Just my 2 cents worth, but I'd recommend you either filter or chemically treat the water from the spigot in Round Valley. Quite a few times I've seen coyotes and deer drinking directly from the spigot, or the "drip pool" just below it, in the early morning. If using chemical treatment, you might want to use something like a coffee filter to 'prefilter' the water for any pieces of floating gunk prior to adding iodine or chlorine.

As for reducing weight, you can always start out with one liter of water, fill a few bottles at the spigot, then leave one or two stashed along the trail while only taking one to the summit. I usually stash one or two liters near Wellman's Divide for a nice drink on the way down.
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Postby Perry » Sun Jun 11, 2006 1:46 pm

The best way to save on weight is to grab Phydeaux's stash... :-)

For Round Valley, I drink it without purifying. It's an underground source, so there is a lower probability of catching something. Not impossible, just less risky. For everything else on San Jacinto and San Gorgonio I use iodine tablets but not too frequently.
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