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Pinnacles National Park w/ Victoria Petryshyn {Environmental Studies}

While it took 23 million years for the Pinnacles to travel 200 miles along the San Andreas fault from L.A. to Central California, we’ll be making a weekend out of the journey. We’ll do everything Pinnacles National Park has to offer, from exploring unique talus caves and tall rock spires to watching massive California Condors in one of their few natural habitats.

The Plan:
Friday: Leave as early as possible in the afternoon, drive five hours north to the campground.
Saturday: 10-12 mile hike through Bear Cave, up High Peaks, along the Steep and Narrow Trail, through the Tunnel Trail, down to Balconies Cave, past Condor Gulch, and back to camp.
Sunday: Drive back to civilization.


  • Sleeping Bag/Pad

  • Mess Kit

  • Good hiking shoes

  • Warm clothes

  • Water bottle

  • Flashlight for the caves (spooooky)


  • Food!

  • Tents

  • Whatever gear you don’t have


PEAK: Pinnacles National Park

DIFFICULTY: 4/5, 10-12 miles, 2k-3k ft. elevation

SCENERY: Big ol’ rocks, big ol’ birds, big ol’ caves.

FUN FACT: As our youngest national park, Pinnacles was created in 2013, just like Peaks & Professors!

Dr. Petryshyn is a USC alumna and geobiologist who specializes in reconstructing past climate and its impact on life forms, both tiny and large. She is involved with research at Mono Lake, South Africa, Catalina, and Michigan. Aside from rocks, she loves her dog, coffee, running, and NASA!


TRIP LEAD: Mark Stephenson

Has opposable thumbs!

Contact Mark:

Read Mark’s bio here.

ADDRESS: 5000 California 146, Paicines, CA, 95043