Santa Rosa & San Jacinto Mountains National Monument

10 Points of Entry into the Monument

1. National Monument Visitor Center:

The southern entrance at 51-500 Highway 74, Palm Desert, four miles south of Highway 111. A starting point for numerous hiking trails and the Palms to Pines Highway. The Bobcat Bookstore and Gift Shop, operated by the Friends of the Desert Mountains, sells hiking maps, guides, and books. The center is open seven days a week 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Call (760) 862-9984 or visit:
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2. Agua Caliente Indian Canyons:

Take Palm Canyon Drive (Highway 111) in Palm Springs south to where it turns east. Rather than veering to the left, continue onto South Palm Canyon (toward Indian Canyons) about 2.5 miles to the tollgate. Call (760) 325-3400 or (800) 790-3398; Information also available at the Agua Caliente Cultural Museum, 219 S. Palm Canyon Drive on the Village Green. (760) 323-0151.

3. Agua Caliente Indian Canyons:

500 W. Mesquite, about four blocks south of Ramon Road in downtown Palm Springs. Turn west to the base of the mountains and the Visitor Center, where information, including a video narration explaining the legend of the canyon is available. (760) 416-7044;

4. Palm Springs Aerial Tramway:

Enter at Highway 111 and Tramway Road in Palm Springs. (760) 325-1391; The top of the Tram offers access to monument trails. More information available from the San Jacinto California State ParkRanger Station at the top.

5. Mount San Jacinto State Park:

Trails begin at the top of the Tram and extend down to the outskirts of Idyllwild. Call (909) 659-2607. More information available from U.S. Forest Service Ranger Station, 54270 Pine Crest St., Idyllwild. (909)-659-2117.

6. Palm Springs Desert Museum:

A hike in the hills begins behind the museum at 101 Museum Drive, a few blocks west of South Palm Canyon Drive and Tahquitz Canyon Way in Palm Springs. (760) 325-0189;

7. La Quinta Cove Trailhead:

At the top of the cove between Avenida Bermudas and Avenida Montezuma, south of Calle Tecate. Call the National Monument Visitor Center at (760) 862-9984.

8. Lake Cahuilla Recreation Area:

From 58075 Jefferson Street, La Quinta. Within the area are hiking and equestrian trails and the Cahuilla Equestrian Park. (760)564-4712.

9. Pacific Crest Trail:

Part of the National Scenic Trail, which stretches from Mexico to Canada, PCT dips into Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, crosses Highway 74 at Cahuilla Tewanet and climbs the backbone of the San Jacinto Mountains. There is no traditional trailhead. Call the Monument Visitor Center at (760) 862-9984, or click to for information.

10. The Living Desert Reserve:

47-900 Portola Avenue, Palm Desert. From Highway 111, turn south on Portola for about 1.5 miles to the entrance. Nature Trail is a two-mile loop through the reserve. (760) 346-5694.

Santa Rosa & San Jacinto National Monument


The Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Mountains National Monument is developing a volunteer program as well as a nonprofit foundation to support conservation, education, and research. Meanwhile, enthusiasts should check the Visitor Center Web site (
) for volunteer opportunities or work with organizations such as the Friends of the Desert Mountains and the Forest Service Volunteer Association.

Opportunities include working at the Visitor Center or the Bobcat Bookstore, helping with guided walks, participating in special events to "meet and greet," giving nature talks, and joining cleanup groups.

For information, call Vic Scott, Friends of the Desert Mountains volunteer coordinator, at (760) 862-9984, or Melinda Lyon of the U.S. Forest Service Volunteer Association at (909) 382-2929.