Upcoming overnight trips

    • Tue, August 21, 2018
    • 9:30 AM
    • Fri, August 24, 2018
    • Bishop Pass

    For more information and to register, visit:  https://greatoutdoorspalmsprings.wildapricot.org/event-2796348

    The Bishop Pass area is one of the most popular destinations in the Eastern Sierras, offering the visitor an amazing succession of beautiful lakes and spectacular views of the Inconsolable Range, Hurd Peak and Mount Agassiz. Our loop trip takes us into the Chocolate Lakes and the South Forth Bishop Creek basins.   Competition can be fierce for overnight permits in this area so we’ve chosen a mid-week trip later in the season to ensure access to the best camping spots.

    • Rating: Moderate on-trail backpacking.  Short hiking distances but with steep switchbacks at high elevation. 
    • Total Distance: About 10 miles over four days
    • Elevation range: between 9,700 feet and 11,200 feet

    First Day: We meet at 9:30am at the Bishop Pass trailhead next to South Lake (9,700 feet).  Day one follows the Bishop Pass trail until we reach the fork for Bull Lake, taking the side trail into the Chocolate Lakes valley. Total elevation gain 1,400 feet in just three miles to our camp at the second Chocolate Lake.  

    Day two:  Our second day takes us up the saddle and down past Ruwau Lake to Long Lake where we’ll search for the optimal spot and set up our two night basecamp.  We gain and lose about 300 feet during our 2 mile hike to Long Lake.  Arriving camp relatively early in the day, and unencumbered by the weight of our packs, we’ll organize an afternoon cross-country hike to explore lovely Margaret Lake.

    Day three:  We’ll pack our lunch for a full day of exploring the chain of lakes leading up to Bishop Pass: Saddlerock Lake, Ledge Lake, Bishop Lake and the Timberline Tarns. Some may prefer a quieter, more meditative day in the camp in Long Lake.

    Day four:  We’ll get a leisurely start to our day and hike the four miles back down to the cars, dropping 1,000 feet. 

    Arrive the day before:  All participants are strongly advised to travel the day before (Monday, Aug 20th) and camp overnight at the La Hupp or Willows campground.  This gives you the peace of mind of (i) performing your final gear check and (ii) ensuring that you begin acclimatizing to the high altitude a day before you hike

    Hiking capabilities/qualifications:  You must be in good physical condition, be able to hike four miles at high altitude (over 9,700 feet throughout the trip), and carry a backpack that weighs 35 pounds on-trail hiking gaining 1,400 feet

    How to register:   After you complete the preregistration here, you will be contacted by the leader via phone to discuss your backpacking experience, equipment, and overall physical condition to participate in this high altitude, remote backcountry adventure.  This screening process is necessary to ensure your safety and the safety of the group and make the trip enjoyable to all. 

    Leader: Mike Seay, email

    Fees / Other:

    •  Wilderness Permit and Fees: $10 per participant. This covers the Wilderness Permit and other associated costs. Payment will be collected at the trailhead

    • Food and Equipment: All participants will be responsible for their own food, tent, stove, bear canister, etc. Participants are encouraged, however, to share stoves and cooking equipment to reduce weight of their packs. No fires are allowed in the backcountry.

    •  Carpooling and arrival: Participants should arrive the day before and camp overnight at or near the trailhead to acclimate to the high altitude. The leader will circulate a list of participants several weeks before the trip to facilitate carpooling and provides details on where to camp.

    What to bring:  You’ll need your ten essentials and all required backpacking gear (food, stove, tent, sleeping bag, appropriate clothing, bear-proof food container, hiking poles, etc.).

    • Fri, September 21, 2018
    • 12:00 PM
    • Sun, September 23, 2018
    • 12:00 PM
    • Oak Glen Camp Retreat

    For more information and to register:  Oak Glen Retreat

    Nestled mile-high in the foothills of the San Bernardino Mountains, within the historic farming community of Oak Glen, lies The Wildlands Conservancy’s Oak Glen Preserve. The 2,189 acre preserve is home to the Conservancy’s Southern California Montane Botanic Garden, Los Rios Rancho and apple orchards. The Preserve includes prominent peaks: Wilshire (8,707 feet) and Galena (9,324 feet) and a network of trails within the preserve.

    Our camp is located at Oak Glen Retreat in the village of Oak Glen and adjacent to The Oak Glen Preserve. RV sites are 30 AMP  hookup and are located across from the tent sites. Tents sites include electricity and water; 2 tents and 2 vehicles per tent site. 1 RV and tow vehicle per RV site. Open campfire permitted only if weather conditions are favorable. Propane campfires permitted.

    Registration Members Only - Prices are based upon you being a Great Outdoors Palm Springs member. To join and purchase a membership: click here

    Members from other chapters should contact our GOPS Webmaster (click here to email)  to be added to our Chapter's website enable registration for our events.  Each person going must complete a separate registration.  

    Schedule Of Events

    Friday, Sept 21

    • Noon - Check-in 
    • 2:00 pm - Pool/Spa time 
    • 4:00 pm - Sunset hike nearby location*
    • 5:30 pm - Tea Time meet and greet. Bring your favorite beverage.
    • 6:30 pm - Optional group dinner at local restaurant*
    • 8:00 pm - Group campfire activities 

    Saturday, Sept 22

    • 9:00 am - Hike Wildland Conservancy Oak Glen Preserve*
    • 12:00 pm - Lunch at Riley's Los Rios Rancho
    • 6:00 pm - Potluck Theme:    Fall Harvest 
    • 7:00 pm - Group Campfire

    Sunday, Sept 23

    • 9:00 am - Hike*
    • 12:00 pm - Check-out time

    * Check campground white board for updates and hike/outing details.

    Amenities:  Hookups for RVs; tent sites have electricity & water. RV dump site nearby. Pool, Spa, Local Restaurants and Attractions, Fall apple harvest. Discount available - on site restaurant.

    Los Rios Rancho  is Southern California's largest historic apple ranch. It has a country store and cafe that features slow cooked meats, fresh baked goods, artisan crafts and seasonal fruit. Think apple pie! Needless to say, it will be a good location for hungry hikers to have a picnic! 

    Trails: Conifers of California, The Artist's Palette, Aquatic Ecosystems, Wetlands Boardwark, Chaparral Loop, Deciduous Forest, Stream Trail, Forest of Fir, Pioneer Loop, Falling Waters, Chaparral Vistas, Pisgah Peak.

    What to BringTen Essentialscamp chair, camp table, camping/cooking gear, food, warm/cool weather clothing, swimwear for pool/spa, potluck item for Saturday night, firewood.

    Directions: 38955 Oak Glen Road Yucaipa CA 92399  MAP DIRECTIONS 

    Climate:  Hist. Avg.:  73° / 50°

    Refunds Cancellation for a refund must be received by September 1, 2018

    Payments:  Although a PayPal screen will appear requesting payment via PayPal, you can scroll down on that screen and pay with a credit card without needing a PayPal account.

    Contact: Scott C: VPO-PS@GreatOutdoors.org

    Photos:  CLICK HERE 

    Pets:  Pets are welcome. Remember leash and to pick up after pet.


    Health Problems/allergiesIt is the responsibility of participants to carry on their person a record of significant allergies, medications and medical history in the event of a medical emergency.  Discuss any medical concerns with the hike leader if you wish.

    • Fri, October 12, 2018
    • Sun, October 14, 2018

    The 2018 Great Outdoors Annual Conference is coming up (October 12-14).

    To register and for more information, please visit http://greatoutdoorssandiego.wildapricot.org/event-3018763

    • Thu, November 08, 2018
    • 12:00 PM
    • Tue, November 13, 2018
    • 4:00 PM
    • Catalina State Park

    To register for this trip:  Catalina State Park

    "Tucson is a City That Encourages You to Explore. The food is delicious. The access to natural beauty is even better."1  Where desert and mountain environments meet to create an area of varied and unparalleled beauty. Our trip will center itself in the beautiful Catalina State Park at the base of the Mountains in the Coronado National Forest at elevations near 3,000 feet. Experience rugged peaks, scenic vistas, waterfalls, and desert scenery. Recharge your senses amid the splendor of  Arizona desert.  Sip hot beverages around a campfire and fall asleep beneath a star-studded sky. Challenge yourself on a variety of day hikes, returning to base camp each day to enjoy the fellowship of similarly emancipated city slickers. Explore the trails with our expert trail guides who know the area. The spacious campground provides both tent and RV opportunities with full amenities. Six days and five nights of adventure and relaxation. 1New York Times 

    Registration Notes
    : Membership Required to register for this trip.

    You can click here to purchase a 1 yr. $25 membership

    Other GO Chapter members should contact our GOPS Webmaster (click here to email) in order to be added as a member of our registration system for free.

    RV's and tents will share sites. One RV and up to two tents on each site. These are large sites with mature vegetation surrounding the sites. We will have propane fire-pit for the group as open fires may be restricted in the camp to a designated area only.

    Amenities: Hot showers, flush toilets, water, electric hookup, picnic tables.

    What to BringTen Essentials, camping/cooking gear, food, warm/cool weather clothing, camp chair, potluck item and appetizer to share at tea time.

    Pets:  are welcomed. Must be kept on leash.

    Schedule *(check whiteboard at camp for details and updates):   


     Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument

    Tuesday Nov 6 and Wednesday Nov 7:  Off season so the campground is pick a site upon arrival. Let's pick sites near site 71. We could caravan ( 325 to 340 miles depending  on route and then 142 miles to Catalina Park). Contact Scott if you are interested in this pre-trip to Organ Pipe.  Recreation.gov reservations.

    Thursday, November 8

    - 2 PM check in and set up camp 

    - Optional late afternoon hike: Pima Canyon Trail (3.9 mi; 670 ft elev gain)

    - Dinner on your own

    Friday, November 9

    - Santa Catalina Mts (Coronado National Forest)

    - Drive 15 miles from campground to trailhead

    - Hike Bear Canyon Trail to/from Seven Falls (7 mi; 900 ft elev gain)

    - Potluck dinner at the campground

    Saturday, November 10

    - Select one: Santa Rita Mts OR Chiricahua Mts (Coronado National Forest)

    - Drive 45 miles (Santa Rita Mts) OR 115 miles (Chiricahua Mts) to trailhead

    - Santa Rita Mts: Hike Kent Spring Trail (6 mi; 1600 ft elev gain) OR 

    - Chiricahua Mts: Heart of Rocks Loop (6.9 mi; 1600 ft elev gain)

    - Visit Mission San Xavier del Bac ($0)

    - Group dinner at a restaurant (optional; see list of options below)

    Sunday, November 11

    - Tucson Mountains (Saguaro National Park - west unit)

    - Drive 25 miles from campground to trailhead

    - Hike to Wasson Peak (4687 ft) via King Canyon, Hugh Norris, Sendero Esperanza, and Gould Mine Trails (7 mi; 1800 ft elev gain)

    - Visit Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum About 85% of the Desert Museum is  outdoors. ($25 adult, $22 senior) 

    - Dinner on your own

    Monday, November 12

    - Rincon and Santa Catalina Mountains (Coronado National Forest)

    - Hike Agua Caliente Loop (6 mi; 1400 ft elev gain)

    - Dinner on your own

    Tuesday, November 13

    - Check out

    Weather and elevation:  Hist. Avg.  79° /47°

    LocationCatalina State Park is about 2000 ft elevation; downtown Tucson is 2400 ft, Phoenix is 1100 ft, the Madera Canyon Lodge is 5000 ft, and Chiricahua Nat’l Monument entrance station is 5100 ft.


    Catalina State Park is located on State Highway 77 (Oracle Rd.) at mile marker 81, nine miles north of Tucson and six miles north of Ina Rd.

    Three suggested driving routes from Palm Springs to Tucson:

    - Via central Phoenix: I-10 only; 385 mi; 6.0 - 7.0 hrs depending on heavy PHX traffic (map here)

    - Via “Phoenix Cutoff”: I-10, AZ85, I-8, & I-10; 400 mi; 6.3 hrs (map here)

    - Via El Centro and Yuma: I-10, CA86, I-8, & I-10; 410 mi; 7.0 hrs (map here)

    Other Accommodations: Many motels in Tucson

    Refunds: Cancellation for a refund  must be received by September 1, 2018 unless there is a wait-list.

    Contacts:  Kirk Bell:   Email   or  Scott Connelly: Email 

     Health Problems/allergies: It is the responsibility of participants to carry on their person a record of significant allergies, medications and medical history in the event of a medical emergency.  Discuss any medical concerns with the hike leader if you wish.

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