DAY THREE HUNDRED AND FIFTY TWO
The Whitewater Preserve is part of the Wildlands Conservancy Sand to Snow Project, a 33,000 acre plus preserve abutting the San Gorgonio Wilderness. It used to be the home of the Whitewater Trout Farm but now is a wonderful place to hike, picnic or enjoy one of the many programs sponsored by the Preserve. There are numerous hikes available here and today I took the 3 1/2 mile Ridge Loop.
The Preserve is accessible via the Whitewater exit off Interstate 10. It's very easy to get to.
While some old structures were removed the fish ponds were retained.
So, too, were the fish.
The trailhead is at the north end of the parking lot. It has lots of information but no map of the hike I'm about to do. Fortunately, it's an easy route to follow.
There are good markers on the trail although a little further up there is one section that has been washed out by the constant water flowing down the Whitewater drainage.
But if you follow the trail and stick to the left side of the canyon, you will soon come to the Pacific Crest Trail.
The trail climbs and switchbacks up the hill.
Until it comes to this sign directing the hiker toward the ridge overlooking Whitewater. I did not know this trail existed when I started this hike but it sure was a pleasant find.
There no need to wonder why it's known as the Ridge Overlook. After leaving the Overlook, you continue down the trail through a barbed wire gate. When possible, please close all gates behind you.
The trail eventually drops down to the road where I come upon this sign. Gee, now you tell me.
From the road, there is a trail which eventually leads you back to the parking area.
The Whitewater Preserve is a wonderful little spot to take the family for a hike, a picnic or, better yet, both.