Photos: Zooming up Mount Jacinto National Park in Palm Springs cable car

Palm Springs, the home to the Rat Pack in the 50’s and 60’s when they left Hollywood to party hard in the desert. Once the rat pack left, the retirees swarmed in to take over the golf courses, until the mid 90’s when a new generation fell in love with the laid back little city. Palm springs is definitely an oasis of the desert with its boutique hotels, steel and glass bungalows and piano bars serving the perfect martini.

Palm Springs lies in the middle of the Coachella Valley, surrounded by desert and land owned by the Cahullia native americans which allows people to gamble the day/night away in the casinos, but there is so much more to this city of 46,000 people than to just bathe in the sun by the pool and gamble.

We were here to explore the outdoor attractions that Palm springs has to offer. One of the must things to do is to zoom up the mountain to the Mount San Jacinto National Park, where you travel in the revolving aerial tramway. The largest of its kind transporting up to 80 people at a time, transporting them from the valley station at an elevation of 2,643 feet passing through 5 unique life zones to the mountain station at 8,516 feet. The 2 and a half mile trip takes only 10 minutes, rotating twice to give everyone the opportunity of seeing the entire valley.

They say its like taking a trip from Mexico to Alaska in just minutes,with it being 30-40 degrees Farenheit cooler you can see why. It had been a warm day down below, but now with it being rather cold, snow lay on the ground for people to play amongst the pine forest. Making snowmen, sliding on their toboggans and people doing some cross country skiing or snow shoeing.

It was a fun day up top to be had by everyone. My son had never experienced so much snow on the ground, as it melts straight away in Osaka, had one of the best days of his life.

Hours of operation.

Tram cars depart at least every half hour. The first tram-car up Monday through Friday is 10 am. First tram-car up Saturday, Sunday and holidays is 8am. Last tram-car up is 8pm and last tram down is 9.45 pm. Be prepared to wait, we were there in high season and we waited for three hours to ride our tram

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The base of Mount San Jacinto, no snow

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Hitomi at the base

imageMe at the base

imageHere comes the cable car

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Moving up the mountain

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The snow, one of the few places you can surf, swim and ski all within 2 hours, it’s California.

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Nearly at the top

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Arrived, look at the snow

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imageRei with new friends

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