Socal - Riverside County - Pinyon Pines NickNames: #PinyonTrail
Pinyon Pines is on Highway 74 a short drive up from Palm Desert,Ca. From the I-215 take the 74 East thru Hemet, from Riverside take the I-10 East to monterey(74) and go south thru Palm Desert. At any rate, to locate it on a map or Thomas guide, its on the 74 a little less than half way between the Idyllwild exit and highway 111 in Palm Desert.
From either direction, you will see a brown sign that says Pinyon Camp and a green sign that says Pinon Dr. , turn here and park by the entrance to the camp grounds on the side of the street.
#1 - Bring ALOT of water! If you are doing the 8-mile full loop, you need at least 70 ounces of water in your Camelback. I prefer one gallon, myself. Trust me-
you will be in the middle of nowhere....so every drop counts!
#2 - Carry extra TUBES! Even if you are running UST tubeless, don't be stupid and think Stan's sealant alone will will get you home safely. A five-mile + walk to your car, will absolutely RUIN your ride!
#3 - Don't do this ride alone. Also, your cellphone is useless out there. If you ever get lost- simply go back the way you came.
#4 - BEST MONTHS to ride, are from November thru February. It may be cold, so dress accordingly.
(THIS UPDATE IS FOR THE 8.10 MILE FULL LOOP):
Adjacent to the Pinyon Flats Campground, just across Hwy 74....is the Sawmill Trailhead, right up a small road, before the recycling center. Park at the Sawmill Trailhead(5E04) parking area and you will see a gated and locked entrance, across the road. Go around it and start your ride. Remember to bear right, past the first trail marker and stay close to the highway. This section is rocky and has deep sand in spots. Also, watch the cactus as you navigate this area. When you reach a steel utility pipe- jump over it and take the LEFT fork, on the trail. Follow it through until you reach a TUNNEL to your right. This cool tunnel goes directly under Highway 74, and is a good place to have a snack and a drink.
When passing the tunnel- hike your bike up a short grade to your LEFT, and the singletrack continues. When you reach the fire road, go LEFT on it until you see the next trail marker, at Palm Canyon Drive(a wide dirt road). Cross the dirt road and continue the singletrack past the trailhead marker. This area has alot of switchbacks and some elevation gain, which is minimal. Follow this across a few sandy, dried creek beds, until you reach a wide wash. Cross the wash and hike up another steep section, and continue until you see the Boy Scout cut off marker, then go RIGHT for another mile on another dirt road, until you see Palm Canyon Dr. again. Turn RIGHT on Palm Canyon and go LEFT once you see the second trailhead marker you previously passed. Follow this fire road back to the campground on Pinon Dr, cross-over Hwy 74 and return back to your vehicle.
Estimated ride time: 4-5hrs. HAVE FUN!!!