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Moses Spring Trail

Easy/Intermediate

Trail

0.5 mile 0.8 kilometer point to point
80% Runnable
Easy/Intermediate

Elevation

Ascent: 236' 72 m
Descent: -18' -6 m
High: 1,630' 497 m
Low: 1,413' 431 m

Grade

Avg Grade: 10% (5°)
Max Grade: 47% (25°)

Dogs

No Dogs
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Trail shared by QuinTCM TCM

A beautiful trail above Bear Gulch Cave that passes beneath Moses Spring Wall.

QuinTCM TCM

Features River/Creek · Views · Wildlife

Check for raptor closures before attempting any off-trail running or climbing.

Description

The trailhead is accessed at the junction with the Bear Gulch Trail and the High Peaks Trail. At the junction, continue to ascend slightly passed a large rock formation called The Heffalump to the west of the trail. A little further ahead, the trail passes through a small man-made tunnel and rock formation called The Guardian at the tunnel's entrance. After the tunnel, the trail passes over a rock bridge and meets the junction to the Bear Gulch Cave Trail.

Continue west past the Bear Gulch Cave Trail where the trail turns directly south where Discovery Wall and Moses Spring Wall meet. Follow the trail south along as it moves between, around, and over rocks. A rock formation called The Camel is visible from this part of the trail high up on the Moses Spring Wall.

Shortly before the end of the trail, the huge cuboid formation called The Monolith will come into view. The trail heads around The Monolith to the east. Near this area is the mid-point exit of the Bear Gulch Cave. Continuing around The Monolith, the trail eventually dips down into Bear Gulch and passes beneath several chockstones as well as passes over several small bridges. Here the trail meets with the Bear Gulch Cave Trail before turning south, passing beneath another large chockstone and then ascending some narrow stairs to its end at the Bear Gulch Reservoir.

Flora & Fauna

Pinnacles is currently one of five release sites for California Condors. The park hosts more than thirty of these scavengers. These birds are best seen in the higher regions of the park and can also often be seen on a hill behind the campsites. Pinnacles is also home to many species of raptors and other birds and is an excellent area for birding.

Wildflowers like Larkspur, California buckeye, Elegant clarkia, California buckwheat, Mariposa lily, Bush poppy, Gray mule-ears, Indian Warrior, California poppy and many others are abundant in spring.

Look for manzanita shrubs interspersed among patches of chaparral.

The park is also home to around 300 different species of lichens, which are easily visible on the many rock formations they color.

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Trail Ratings

  4.4 from 5 votes

#5952

Overall
  4.4 from 5 votes
5 Star
40%
4 Star
60%
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Trail Rankings

#561

in California

#5,952

Overall
42 Views Last Month
1,542 Since Apr 13, 2015
Easy/Intermediate

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Photos

The monolith.
May 26, 2015 near Soledad, CA
Pinnacles above Bear Gulch Reservoir
Oct 14, 2017 near Soledad, CA
Heading down into the cave.
Feb 2, 2016 near Soledad, CA
Heading underground to explore the cave.
Feb 2, 2016 near Soledad, CA
Though you'll have to navigate tight clearances, Bear Gulch Cave provides both a respite from the sweltering heat and the unique opportunity to explore a talus cave.
Aug 9, 2018 near Soledad, CA
Heading down the staircase.
May 26, 2015 near Soledad, CA

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