Traverse the Caves (Loop)

Traverse the Caves (Loop)
City: Paicines
Park: Pinnacles National Monument

Saturday, March 31, 2007 @ 9:30 AM

Event Notes:

We will meet at the Bear Gulch Visitors Center at the East entrance. Participants to arrange their own carpools/transportation, food, and lodging. Additional information available here.

Cell Phones & 2-way Radios
Cell phones will not work within Pinnacles or the Pinnacles Campground area. Use of a 2-way walkie takie is advised. Prachi and I will be carrying Motorola TalkAbout FRS/GMRS type 2-way radios (model SX800R). You are not required to purchase or use such a radio, however, while at camp and hiking we will be monitoring the following channel:

      Channel/Frequency:                      1 (462.5625 MHz)
      Privacy Code (PL/CTCSS):       11 (97.4 Hz)

Please note that other 2-way radio brands and models should be compatible with the SX800R we will be carrying, however, do not trust that the channel number or privacy codes to be exactly the same. Your radio may require a slightly different configuration from ours. Always check your user manual ahead of time for the proper settings.

Contact: John Bondon
Cell Phone: (925) 457-7717


Trail Notes:

We will start from the Bear Gulch Visitors center and take the Moses Spring trail to the Bear Gulch caves and Reservoir. (Those who want to bypass the caves can continue on to the reservoir. We will regroup at the reservoir). From the reservoir we continue on the Rim trail to High peaks trail. Follow High peaks through a host of wild flowers on to scouts peak. And then descend to the Soledad side of the park via Juniper Canyon Trail. We will traverse the balconies trail go through the balconies cave and then return back along the Chalone creek bed along the Old Pinnacles trail. Flashlight/head lamps required in caves. There are two restrooms along the trail. We will stop for lunch near the balconies caves. Give yourself 5 – 7 hours.


Directions to Trailhead:

Our hikes will start from the East Entrance Visitors center. The East Side of the monument is open 24 hours a day for hiking. Give yourself about 21/2 - 3 hours from the East Bay.

From the East Bay to the East Entrance:
Take Hwy 680 South towards San Jose. Take the exist for Hwy 101 South (towards LA). Drive through the city of Gilroy take the exist for Hwy 25 south. On Hwy 25, go through the town of Hollister (Note Hwy 25 takes two turns thru the town of Hollister, pay special attention to road signs showing the turns for Hwy 25). After passing thru Hollister, continue on Hwy 25 for about 30 miles to Hwy 146. Turn right on Hwy 146, and follow it to the Pinnacles entrance station. If the entrance station is closed, please continue to the park visitor center to check in.

From San Francisco or South Bay to the East Entrance:
Take Hwy 101 South (towards LA). Drive through the city of Gilroy take the exist for Hwy 25 south. On Hwy 25, go through the town of Hollister (Note Hwy 25 takes two turns thru the town of Hollister, pay special attention to road signs showing the turns for Hwy 25). After passing thru Hollister, continue on Hwy 25 for about 30 miles to Hwy 146. Turn right on Hwy 146, and follow it to the Pinnacles entrance station. If the entrance station is closed, please continue to the park visitor center to check in.

TrailHead Parking Fee: $5 entrance fee


The trailhead information on this page was last updated Monday, February 05, 2007.