Plant Guide to Laws Loop (Willow Creek Trail, Laws Camp, Caramba Trail), San Jacinto Mountains

This is a working list, about which we make no guarantees at all until we officially release it. Use at your own risk!

Introduction and Explanation of Plant Trail Guides

Highlights of This Trail
Fieldwork Dates and Summary of List Changes With Time
The Plant Guide
Comments On Specific Species


This Loop begins at Saddle Junction, and follows the Willow Creek Trail to the junction with the connector trail that heads to Laws Junction on the Caramba Trail. The guide then follows the Caramba Trail back to Saddle Junction.

The Willow Creek Trail begins at Saddle Junction, which is at the top of the Devils Slide Trail in the San Jacinto Mountains. It heads E-NE from Saddle Junction, crosses Willow Creek at mile 1.41, and meets the connector trail at mile 1.84.

Interestingly, there seems to be no formal name for this trail. Robinson, in his 1986 San Bernardino Mountain Trails, simply says At Saddle Junction take the trail fork leading northeast, marked "Willow Creek" and "Long Valley".

(Add complete description)

Highlights of This Trail

The botanical highlights of this trail are:

Number of Unique Taxa On This Trail

The following histogram gives the number of trails in my database that contain each taxon on this trail. I had 66 trails in my database when this histogram was made. A number of "1" means the taxon has only been found on this trail among the trails in my database.

Histogram not updated since 2004.

Number of Trails
Containing A Taxon
Number Of Taxa
On This Trail
% of Taxa
On This Trail
Total Taxa33100%

I found 10 additional species not in the above table, since they have not been identified yet. The unidentified ones are marked with ? or sp in the id? column in the guide, and have no entry in the #all column.

Fieldwork Dates and Summary of List Changes With Time

The following table gives the dates the trail was walked and when notes were made for the field guide.

Visit DateFarthest Mile SurveyedNotes made to update guide

The fieldwork on 6/13/02 was only cursory, noting just a few species from memory.

The following table gives some of the early information on the total number of taxa on the list and the breakdown of the taxa without positive identification, after each survey. See Explanation of Plant Trail Guides to understand the symbols below.

Visit DateVisit ## taxa# "?"# "sp"# "~"# "ssp"

The guide was not updated after each of the trips after 8/28/03, so the information isn't readily available to update the table above.

The Plant Guide

Plant guide incorporates all fieldwork up to and including that on 7/26/11.

Version for printing, without lines and other text on this page: html (8 pages) or pdf Clickbook booklet (2 double-sided pages). (See printing instructions for an explanation of these options)

MileS#id?Common NameLatin Name#here#all
0.00   Begin trail at Saddle Junction; elevation 8075 feet (2460 m)
0.00b1 Jeffrey pinePinus jeffreyi99 / 987
0.00b2 white firAbies concolor99 / 989
0.01l  Sign: "Skunk Cabbage; Willow Creek; Long Valley" with an arrow pointing ahead.
0.02b3 Sierra Nevada lotusLotus nevadensis var. nevadensis99 / 946
0.02l4 pinegrove gayophytumGayophytum oligospermum30 / 543
0.02l  (San Gabriel beardtongue, Penstemon labrosus; Parish's snowberry, Symphoricarpos rotundifolius var. parishii)
0.02b5 one-seeded pussypawsCalyptridium monospermum50 / 323
0.03r  (Elmer's needlegrass, Achnatherum occidentale ssp. pubescens)
0.03r  (squirreltail, Elymus elymoides)
0.05b6 Parish's snowberrySymphoricarpos rotundifolius var. parishii99 / 959
0.06   Trail turns left 90°
0.07l7 San Gabriel beardtonguePenstemon labrosus2 / 233
0.07l  (western wallflower, Erysimum capitatum ssp. capitatum)
0.07l8 Fremont's goosefootChenopodium fremontii99 / 542
0.07l9 groundsmokeGayophytum diffusum ssp. parviflorum99 / 234
0.07l10 changeable phaceliaPhacelia mutabilis99 / 943
0.09b11 fragile sheath sedgeCarex fracta99 / 956
0.09r  (Scouler's willow, Salix scouleriana)
0.09r12 western wallflowerErysimum capitatum ssp. capitatum50 / 973
0.09b13 fringed bromeBromus ciliatus2 / 126
0.09r14 Nevada cinquefoil (now only off-trail here; seen on-trail one year)Potentilla glandulosa ssp. nevadensis10 / 327
0.09   Cross dry drainage.
0.09r15 Brewer's monkeyflowerMimulus breweri5 / 120
0.09r  (musk monkeyflower, Mimulus moschatus; larger mountain monkeyflower, Mimulus tilingii)
0.09l16 brackenPteridium aquilinum var. pubescens99 / 966
0.09r17 wax currantRibes cereum var. cereum20 / 959
0.12r  (pine lousewort, Pedicularis semibarbata)
0.13r18 San Jacinto lupineLupinus hyacinthinus99 / 958
0.13l19 pine lousewortPedicularis semibarbata50 / 950
0.13l20 white catch-flySilene verecunda ssp. platyota50 / 960
0.13l  (spotted coralroot, Corallorhiza maculata)
0.16l21 Cleveland's horkeliaHorkelia clevelandii5 / 131
0.19l  (mountain mugwort, Artemisia ludoviciana ssp. incompta)
0.19b22 spotted coralrootCorallorhiza maculata30 / 925
0.19r  (California corn lily, Veratrum californicum var. californicum)
0.19r  (pinedrops, Pterospora andromedea)
0.26r24 mountain mugwortArtemisia ludoviciana ssp. incompta99 / 949
0.28l  (slender wheatgrass, Elymus trachycaulus)
0.29l23 purple false-giliaAllophyllum divaricatum2 / 126
0.32l  (bitter cherry, Prunus emarginata)
0.34r  (ranger's buttons, Sphenosciadium capitellatum)
0.37r25 little false-solomon's-sealSmilacina stellata20 / 214
0.37l26 plain mariposa lilyCalochortus invenustus5 / 236
0.37l27~Check for pine violetViola pinetorum ssp. pinetorum2 / 16
0.37r  (California brome, Bromus carinatus var. carinatus)
0.38b28 yarrowAchillea millefolium40 / 555
0.38r  (lemon lily, Lilium parryi)
0.38b29 blue wildryeElymus glaucus ssp. glaucus50 / 928
0.38l30 squirreltailElymus elymoides50 / 959
0.39l31 ranger's buttonsSphenosciadium capitellatum30 / 538
0.39r32 California bromeBromus carinatus var. carinatus50 / 958
0.39l33 Check for Elmer's needlegrassAchnatherum occidentale ssp. pubescens2 / 21
0.39l  Check for (wild tarragon, Artemisia dracunculus)
0.40r  View of Skunk Cabbage Meadow
0.41l34 vari-nerved sedgeCarex heteroneura var. heteroneura2 / 115
0.41l35 Kentucky blue grassPoa pratensis ssp. agassizensis / 31
0.41b36 abrupt-beak sedgeCarex abrupta5 / 123
0.41l37 musk monkeyflowerMimulus moschatus99 / 141
0.41l38 Idaho bentgrassAgrostis idahoensis / 47
0.41b39 mountain carpet cloverTrifolium monanthum var. grantianum / 39
0.41l40 slender wheatgrassElymus trachycaulus25 / 926
0.41b  first on-trail Nevada cinquefoil, Potentilla glandulosa ssp. nevadensis, in 2011
0.41l41 glandular willowherbEpilobium ciliatum ssp. glandulosum5 / 112
0.41l42 western bistortPolygonum bistortoides5 / 110
0.41b43 slender hairgrassDeschampsia elongata50 / 341
0.41b44 slender cinquefoilPotentilla gracilis var. fastigiata10 / 28
0.41l45 Parish's yampahPerideridia parishii5 / 114
0.41l46 western marsh cudweedGnaphalium palustre10 / 118
0.41r47 mat muhlyMuhlenbergia richardsonis1 / 126
0.42l48 lemon lilyLilium parryi20 / 345
0.42r  (Parish's lupine, Lupinus latifolius var. parishii)
0.45r49 goldenrodSolidago californica50 / 5101
0.46   Cross small drainage
0.48b50 rigid hedge-nettleStachys ajugoides var. rigida20 / 258
0.48r51 long-anthered rushJuncus macrandrus10 / 136
0.48r52 larger mountain monkeyflowerMimulus tilingii50 / 945
0.48l53 tinker's pennyHypericum anagalloides10 / 117
0.48b54 thyme-leaved speedwellVeronica serpyllifolia ssp. humifusa10 / 124
0.48l55 swamp sedgeCarex senta30 / 346
0.48l56 small white violetViola macloskeyi30 / 123
0.48   Cross wet drainage with a low depression to the left.
0.48r57 floriferous monkeyflowerMimulus floribundus20 / 225
0.48b58 spike bentgrassAgrostis exarata10 / 121
0.52r  Skunk Cabbage Jct.: elevation ~8000 feet (2438 m); jct. trail to Tahquitz Valley; continue ahead; trail flat for next 0.3 miles
0.61r59 pinedropsPterospora andromedea20 / 940
0.61l60 wild tarragonArtemisia dracunculus99 / 979
0.61l  Jct. trail to campsite
0.74b61 San Bernardino rubber rabbitbrushChrysothamnus nauseosus ssp. bernardinus30 / 965
0.74r  Jct. trail to campsite
0.77   Leave bracken and wet area
0.78l  (*downy brome, Bromus tectorum)
0.80   Trail resumes descent
0.81b62 Wright's buckwheatEriogonum wrightii var. subscaposum50 / 940
0.81l  (green-leaf manzanita, Arctostaphylos patula)
0.81b63 mountain whitethornCeanothus cordulatus40 / 965
0.88   Cross moist drainage and ascend briefly
0.89l64 broad-leaved lotusLotus crassifolius var. crassifolius / 27
0.93r65 short-flowered monardellaMonardella nana ssp. tenuiflora30 / 943
0.93r  (naked buckwheat, Eriogonum nudum var. pauciflorum)
0.94   Cross small dry drainage
0.98r66~Scouler's willowSalix scouleriana10 / 351
0.98   Cross drainage; willows resprouting here from small lightning-caused fire in 2000, but kept low by deer
0.99b67 San Jacinto buckwheatEriogonum apiculatum50 / 542
1.01l68 bitter cherryPrunus emarginata99 / 931
1.01   Cross small drainage
1.01r69 zig-zag gayophytumGayophytum heterozygum / 2
1.06l  (bush chinquapin, Chrysolepis sempervirens)
1.09   Cross small drainage
1.10l  (incense-cedar, Calocedrus decurrens)
1.12r  (Grinnell's beardtongue, Penstemon grinnellii var. grinnellii)
1.12l ?(~Martin's paintbrush, ~Castilleja applegatei ssp. martinii; Sierra gooseberry, Ribes roezlii var. roezlii)
1.13   Trail curves left at ridge
1.15r  (fir dwarf-mistletoe, Arceuthobium abietinum)
1.16r70 California black oakQuercus kelloggii1 / 133
1.17l71 hybrid manzanitaArctostaphylos patula X A. pringlei ssp. drupacea1 / 15
1.18l72?giant red paintbrush??Castilleja miniata ssp. miniata??1 / 138
1.19l  (canyon live oak, Quercus chrysolepis)
1.25   (Martin's paintbrush, ~Castilleja applegatei ssp. martinii)
1.25   Trail curves left at ridge
1.26b73 bush chinquapinChrysolepis sempervirens50 / 953
1.31b74 green-leaf manzanitaArctostaphylos patula50 / 950
1.32b75 sugar pinePinus lambertiana / 64
1.35l sp(Cordylanthus sp.)
1.36r  (snow-plant, Sarcodes sanguinea)
1.36l76 pipsissewaChimaphila umbellata20 / 15
1.38r77 beaked penstemonPenstemon rostriflorus / 50
1.38r78 mountain pink currantRibes nevadense10 / 253
1.41r79 western columbineAquilegia formosa5 / 257
1.41b80 pearlwortSagina saginoides5 / 129
1.41b81 brittle bladder fernCystopteris fragilis1 / 142
1.41l  (streambank lotus, Lotus oblongifolius var. oblongifolius)
1.41   Cross Willow Creek; local low point; elevation ~7800 feet (2377 m)
1.41r82~tall mannagrassGlyceria elata5 / 135
1.41l83 glaucus willowherbEpilobium glaberrimum ssp. glaberrimum50 / 930
1.41r84 western azaleaRhododendron occidentale10 / 240
1.42r85 fir dwarf-mistletoeArceuthobium abietinum5 / 110
1.55b86 Grinnell's beardtonguePenstemon grinnellii var. grinnellii2 / 143
1.58   Local high point; elevation ~7880 feet (2402 m)
1.70r87 yellow willowSalix lutea2 / 225
1.70   Cross creek (short tributary to Willow Creek) with running water; local low point; elevation 7840 feet (2390 m)
1.76   Trail turns right 90°
1.84r  Jct trail to Laws; local high point; elevation ~7900 feet (2408 m); turn right and go to Laws Camp
1.84l  Sign: "TBS"
1.84l88~pinewoods rock-cressArabis holboellii var. pinetorum5 / 127
1.91l89 naked buckwheatEriogonum nudum var. pauciflorum40 / 956
1.93l90 mountain California-fuchsiaEpilobium canum ssp. latifolium20 / 394
1.93r91 canyon live oakQuercus chrysolepis20 / 977
1.97   Trail curves right at drainage and then curves left
2.00r  View of entire Tahquitz ridge
2.06b  Trail makes half circle on right on flattened spot; many dead firs with dead fir mistletoe, Phoradendron pauciflorum here
2.09   Good view of desert
2.17   Switchback left
2.20   Long switchback right
2.21l  (nearby incense-cedar, Calocedrus decurrens)
2.21r ~(pine dwarf-mistletoe, Arceuthobium campylopodum)
2.28   Switchback left
2.28r  (California-aster, Lessingia filaginifolia var. filaginifolia)
2.32l92 beautiful hulseaHulsea vestita ssp. callicarpha10 / 232
2.33   Trail curves right
2.41r93 incense-cedarCalocedrus decurrens20 / 358
2.47r  (Interesting green-leaf manzanita, Arctostaphylos patula, which split a boulder)
2.57   Switchback left
2.64l  Check to make sure this honking grass is Poa pratensis
2.67   Trail curves right
2.71l ~(~willowherb, ~Epilobium ciliatum ssp. ?)
2.71   Cross Willow Creek again; elevation 7440 feet (2268 m)
2.72r  Sign: "Willow Creek (back); Long Valley (back)"; Trail turns left 90°
2.74b94 breakfast bedstrawKelloggia galioides50 / 35
2.74r  (Fendler's meadow-rue, Thalictrum fendleri var. fendleri)
2.76l  (Campsites on other side of Willow Creek)
2.76r95 Hall's bromeBromus orcuttianus var. hallii / 8
2.83   Laws Jct.; jct. Caramba Trail; go right on it; low point on loop, elevation ~7425 feet (2263 m)
3.18r96 leafy daisyErigeron foliosus var. foliosus2 / 280
3.20l  (Martin's paintbrush, ~Castilleja applegatei ssp. martinii; only ones seen in 2007)
3.24r97 Sierra gooseberryRibes roezlii var. roezlii / 43
3.27r98 tall trisetumTrisetum canescens / 14
3.27   Cross lush creek without water
3.27l99 bigleaf lupineLupinus polyphyllus var. burkei / 15
3.28l100 thimbleberryRubus parviflorus10 / 131
3.28l  (California geranium, Geranium californicum, along bank of creek)
3.35   Trail curves left at small drainage
    (closer California corn lily, Veratrum californicum var. californicum)
3.66l  First good view of Tahquitz Creek
3.71l101 splendid giliaGilia splendens ssp. splendens50 / 525
3.73r102 Utah service-berryAmelanchier utahensis1 / 123
3.76   Cross drainage in moist area
3.89r103 spear-leaved mountain dandelionAgoseris retrorsa3 / 132
3.90r104 Fendler's meadow-rueThalictrum fendleri var. fendleri10 / 330
3.97b105 Mexican rushJuncus mexicanus10 / 153
3.98   Cross moist drainage
3.99r  Sign: "Candy's Creek"
4.44   Jct. trail to Skunk Cabbage Meadow (r) and Tahquitz Meadow (l)
5.04   Saddle Junction; end loop

Comments On Specific Species

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Copyright © 2002-2012 by Tom Chester and Dave Stith.
Permission is freely granted to reproduce any or all of this page as long as credit is given to us at this source:
Comments and feedback: Tom Chester
Updated 18 June 2012.