Pinto Mountain

Joshua Tree National Park, CA


Distance8.4 mi
Elevation gain2,700 ft
Route typeOut & back
Duration4 hr
CruxClass 2

Peaks bagged

Pinto Mountain(DPS, Zdon)3,982 ft / Prom. 1,253 ft

DPS. Desert Peaks SectionZdon. Andy Zdon's Desert Summits


From Pinto Basin Sand Dunes Trailhead, starting the 2-mile walk through the open desert to the base of Pinto Mountain. A small, sand covered ridge can be seen about a mile away.
On top of the ridge. From here the route descents about 100 feet, crossing a dry creek bed.
A "coyote melon" gourd growing inside the dry creek bed.
Aiming for a large drainage, seen here on the right.
Compacted gravel at the edge of an alluvial fan fed by the drainage.
Crossing the drainage en route to the ascent ridge, ahead.
A use-trail appears at the base of the ridge.
Class 2 section shortly after gaining the ridge.
Looking back down the drainage.
The use-trail clings to the right side of the ridge, avoiding trickier terrain along the crest.
Pinto Mountain's summit comes into view. The use-trail can be seen cutting across the slope on the right.
View down a colorful, easternly drainage.
Passing through an ocotillo patch.
Brilliant rock layers.
The use-trail contours around several bumps along the ridge.
Looking back.
Approaching a steep section.
Final push.
View toward the western half of Joshua Tree National Park.
Topping out on Pinto Mountain's flat summit.
Rock cairn at Pinto Mountain's summit. View northeast.
View south.

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