San Jacinto Creek

Location and Directions:

21250 Dark Canyon Rd.
Idyllwild-Pine Cove, CA 92549
use MapQuest


     San Jacinto Creek is located near the city of Banning in Riverside Co. From I-10 turn south on Highway 243 (Banning-Idyllwild Rd.). Go 25 miles to Mt. San Jacinto State Park. Turn left into the park to Dark Canyon campground. Turn left, go approx. 3 miles to the creek.


General Info:

    Be sure to have a Wilderness Permit displayed in your windshield if you plan to park your car here. Daily permits are available for $5 at any ranger office.

Other lakes and creeks in the area:
Fuller-Mill Creek
Lake Hemet
Perris Lake
Diamond Valley Lake
Lake Skinner
Lake Fulmor


Fishing Info:

    As long as there is enough water flow to support them, rainbow trout are stocked here from Spring through Summer by the DFG. There are also wild rainbow and brown trout here year-round. Be sure to visit the CDFW web site for complete regulations before heading out.



Comments and Tips:

    There are many good area's off the San Jacinto North Fork. Most of the good area's are hard to get too, that's what makes them good, otherwise they would be fished out and full of rainbow's. Here's a pic on the North Fork between the 243 and the 74, we actually packed in and stayed the night right on the river. Look at the spread of browns on the rock, all caught in one day. This was in April of 1981, I don't know if this can be done anymore. Happy hunting for those good spots.

Bret Barnes


    The North fork is a fun place to fish! But even more exciting is the South fork. This area is not for the beginer or novice angler! Its a very trechorus hike of about 4 miles from the parking area on Highway 74, it starts off uphill for about 1/2 mile then its downhill all the way, coming back out is 3 1/2 miles of uphill. When you reach the creek (this is the drainage out of Hemet Lake) you can go up or down river. I recommend going up, the fishing tends to be a little better. However, after the spring run off, the river can grow pretty narrow and small with some deeper holes, focus on these holes. The fish in here are native Brown Trout and are very very jumpy! They can be very big but stunted in growth (short stalky body and a big hook jawed head). The brush around the creek is thick and you might have to do some rock hopping. DO NOT venture down here during summer!!!!! It is very hot and there are tons of rattle snakes!!! Try this spot in fall, the browns are spawning and very hungry, or early spring. Bring water and be in good physical shape. There is one other access point, you can park before the parking area and hike down Suicide Hill (less than half the hike of the normal trail), but this way is evebn harder, 3/4 mile down hill at an 80degree angle, its a hand over hand climb out!!! Good luck!!

Chris Lorenzi


     If you know something about this area or have some photos that you'd like to share, please E-mail and I'll post it here!

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