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San Jacinto Mountains
Mountain Range
North slope of San Jacinto Peak
Country United States
State California
District Riverside County
Coordinates 33°48′52″N 116°40′45″W / 33.81444°N 116.67917°W / 33.81444; -116.67917
Highest point San Jacinto Peak
 - elevation 3,302 m (10,833 ft)
Timezone Pacific (UTC-8)
 - summer (DST) PDT (UTC-7)
Topo map USGS San Jacinto Peak
San Jacinto Mountains

The San Jacinto Mountains ('Avii Hanupach[1] in Mojave) are a mountain range east of Los Angeles in southern California in the United States.[2] The mountains are named for Saint Hyacinth (San Jacinto in Spanish). The Pacific Crest Trail runs along the spine of the range.

The range extends for approximately 30 mi (48 km) from the San Bernardino Mountains southeast to the Santa Rosa Mountains. The San Jacinto Mountains are the northernmost of the Peninsular Ranges, which run 1500 km (900 miles) from Southern California to the southern tip of the Baja California Peninsula. The highest peak in the range is San Jacinto Peak (3,302 m)(10,834 ft).

The Coachella Valley stretches along the eastern side of the range, including the cities of Palm Springs and Rancho Mirage. Banning Pass and San Gorgonio Pass separate the range from Mount San Gorgonio to the north. The western slope holds the community of Idyllwild. Above Idyllwild is Tahquitz Rock, a famous rock climbing area. The range is the eastern boundary of the San Jacinto Valley, location of Hemet; it also marks the eastern edge of the fast-growing Inland Empire region and Greater Los Angeles as a whole.

The indigenous Cahuilla live in the deserts around the San Jacinto Mountains and used the range for hunting, foraging, and to escape the summer heat. The range can be thought of as a sky island, as it contains numerous species of flora and fauna that cannot tolerate the triple-digit-Fahrenheit heat of the surrounding valleys.

Much of the range is embraced by the Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Mountains National Monument created in 2000. Mount San Jacinto State Park is located along the flank of San Jacinto Peak. Part of the eastern flank of the range is located within the Agua Caliente Indian Reservation. In 1990 the California Legislature created the Coachella Valley Mountains Conservancy to protect the mountains surrounding the valley.


Flora and fauna

The vegetation found on the mountain flanks is strongly influenced by elevation and climate. Near the valley floor, conditions are often arid and hot, limiting the vegetative palette to species that are adapted to such conditions.[3] At higher elevations forestation of the San Jacinto Mountains includes considerable California Black Oak associated with Coulter Pine.[4]

In popular culture

The range was a frequent topic of Palm Springs artist Paul Grimm (1892-1974).

Since the dawn of Hollywood, film directors have commonly come out to shoot films around the mountains and around the surrounding area and mountain ranges, for a break from the bustling Southern California scene.

Recording artist Peter Gabriel penned a song entitled San Jacinto.

Astro Camp is located in these mountains.


  1. ^ Munro, P et al. A Mojave Dictionary Los Angeles: UCLA, 1992
  2. ^ "San Jacinto Mountains". Geographic Names Information System. U.S. Geological Survey. Retrieved 2009-05-03.  
  3. ^ University of California Publications in Botany, Published by University of California Press, Berkeley, Ca., 1903, Item notes: v.1 (1902-1903)
  4. ^ C. Michael Hogan (2008) Quercus kelloggii,, ed. Nicklas Stromberg [1]

External links

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