Anza Borrego: Pinyon Mountain - Split Mountain

Rating *****
Length 27.8 mile (one way) - 5 Hour, 40 minutes (one way). Easy/Moderate (some soft sand and rocks).
Elevation 3970 - 400 feet
Access On Hwy 2 after mile 21 and directly after the Anza Borrego Park sign (from the direction of Borrego Springs) head left on a dirt road. High clearance Car recommended.

This is probably, the most scenic and interesting bike ride in the park.
The best part is, it goes mostly down hill.

At the start hike or bike up the hill.
Going down a bit enjoy it while it lasts, another climb up to "Saddle 1", some soft sand and a washed out road.
Now we go mostly down, past "The Squeeze", you should fit.
Watch out for the next bend "X Harper Dams", going down will end in a rather long dry fall.
In this canyon the Harper Brothers build 2 dams, that where completely filled with sand not too long after it was finished.

The road turns to the right (South), uphill filled with some boulders.
Heart Attack Hill goes rather steep downhill. Steep isn't the word, more like straight down.
After that more steep drops until the road meets Harper Flat.

Uphill again, with nasty sand. Over the Saddle a nice and easy ride up to "Split Rock".
Enter Hapaha Flat, close to the exit "Spring MC" the road levels and more deep sand appears.
The canyon narrows and the "road" gets more pleasant to bike.

The Sandstone Canyon, the mother of all the park canyons is a worth while side trip and a good place for a rest.
Go left as you bike past the unmarked Diablo exit.
After a while you get two choices, follow the road or take the less travelled Loop Wash.
Don't miss the Elephant knees on the right, a sight to see. Eroded mud-stone with a shell reef on top.
In front, the main attraction of Fish Creek, the Wind Caves. A well worth small detour, on foot.

Now the Father of all the park canyons, split mountain canyon, take your time to enjoy and don't miss the Anticline.
As the narrow canyon ends it's a nice place to end the bike ride and wait for a pick-up.

How to get here:
On Hwy 2 after mile 21 and directly after the Anza Borrego Park sign (from the direction of Borrego Springs) head left on a dirt road. Turn right into Pinyon Mountain Valley.
High clearance recommended, sometimes a 4x4 may be needed. Before 2014 at the start point the road was blocked by boulders. In 2015 the road seems to be a lot better, so you should be able to drive further, at point saddle 1.
This is the place to start your bike tour.

Disclaimer: Read this first before you start your hike. Contact: info/at/borregohiking/./com (leave out the /)
Hiking the Borrego Springs Area (Anza-Borrego Desert SP, Cuyamaca Rancho SP, Imperial Sand Dunes (Algodones Dunes), Jacumba, Laguna Mountain, Warner Springs) California, Hike with gps, gpx and kml (Google Earth).

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