Saturday morning as I drove to Palm Springs, I looked up at San Jacinto Peak, "San Jac," my mountain. When I met the group, it was Lew Amack, How Bailey, Sandi Siniaho, Vicki Jordan, Lee Weaver, CoLeader, and myself. We rode the tram to the mountain station, hiked down to the ranger station, picked up our permit, and we were on our way. About a half hour up the trail, David Michels and Pam Cloutier caught up with us and now we were nine.
I Pointed out, "The eye of the mountain", which is a hole in a large boulder above the trail. Between the tram and the peak there are four different kinds of pine trees: The sugar pine has five needles about three inches long and cones that can grow to around eighteen inches long. The jeffrey pine has three needles five to six inches long; the cones are a good size but not as large as the sugar pine; and the fragrance of vanilla or caramel. The lodge pole pine has two needles about two inches long and the cones are about the size of a golf ball. The limber pine has five needles about two inches long and the cones are about the size of an avocado. Then there is the silver fir tree with one needle about one inch in length. The Mountain mahogany is not a tree but a bush; well so much for trees.
When we arrived at Round Valley the water faucet was frozen and smart me - why should I carry water when I can get it at Round Valley? That will teach me. Lew had three quarts of water plus two cans of juice so I was saved. When we reached Wellman's Divide, some stayed to have lunch while the rest went on to the peak. The temperature dropped to about 32°. Everyone made the peak and when we got back to the tram some of us had hot buttered rum. A great group; a great time.