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Hiking: Santiago Peak

Summit elevation: 5,689 feet
Holy Jim Trail: 17 miles with 4,400 feet of climbing
Harding Truck Trail to Four Corners: 18 miles with 3,500 feet of climbing

Santiago Peak • Description

At 5,689 feet, Santiago Peak is the highest point in Orange County. Santiago Peak and Modjeska Peak are also known as Saddleback Mountain. Santiago Peak offers views of Mount San Gorgonio, Mount San Jacinto, and Mount Baldy, as well as of Orange County and the Pacific Ocean.
A National Forest Adventure Pass is required.
Santiago Peak • Route Profile
Route Profile • Holy Jim Trail

Holy Jim Trail • Description

Holy Jim Trail is named after James Smith (aka old cussing Jim), a beekeeper in the late 19th century.
The hike starts in Trabuco Canyon (dirt road). The first half mile is paved, then the trail begins. Initially it crosses Holy Jim Creek several times, then it forks. The right trail leads to Holy Jim Falls (half-mile roundtrip), the left trail continues on to Main Divide Road for three miles.
Turning left, the road leads to the summit. Turning right for less than half a mile, Upper Holy Jim Trail serves as shortcut with views across the Main Divide. It rejoins Main Divide Road after less than a mile, which continues on to the summit for two miles.
Santiago Peak • Route Profile
Route Profile • Harding Truck Trail

Harding Truck Trail • Description

Harding Truck Trail starts in Modjeska Canyon and leads nine miles up to Four Corners. The fire road has mile markers at every mile and offers views of Orange County.

Santiago Peak • Interactive Map

Santiago Peak • Pictures

Santiago Peak • Holy Jim Trailhead
Holy Jim Trailhead
Santiago Peak • Holy Jim Creek
Holy Jim Creek
Santiago Peak • Holy Jim Falls
Holy Jim Falls
Santiago Peak • Lower Holy Jim Trail
Lower Holy Jim Trail
Santiago Peak • Lower Main Divide Road
Lower Main Divide Road
Santiago Peak • Mount San Gorgonio and Mount San Jacinto
Mount San Gorgonio and Mount San Jacinto
Santiago Peak • Upper Holy Jim Trail
Upper Holy Jim Trail
Santiago Peak • Upper Main Divide Road
Upper Main Divide Road
Santiago Peak • Santiago Peak
Santiago Peak
Santiago Peak • View of Orange County
View of Orange County
Santiago Peak • View of Mount Baldy
View of Mount Baldy
More pictures (including Harding Truck Trail)

Santiago Peak • Personal Notes

I went solo and had an awesome day. Since I started early, I was the first hiker on the summit, together with a few mountain bikers and off-roaders.
Sandra and I hiked Harding Truck Trail to Four Corners in preparation of our Ecuador expedition.
See Also: Hiking & Backpacking
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