Fortuna Mountain Trail is a 6.2 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near San Diego, CA that features a waterfall and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.
dogs on leash
Beginners and newcomers should start out at Equestrian Circle. Equestrian Cir Santee, CA 92071 is the address you want to use if you are using Google Maps. Otherwise, there are many trail heads and look on a trail map of where to go.
went on a pretty hot day. it was really hot in the beginning but got a little better in the middle of the hike. the signs are really confusing and no arrows along the trail. just posted signs. we started off the fortuna trail and ended up on the Rim trail loop. the rim trail was fun. the view up there was worth it. i wouldn't go again though unless on a cool day and if they improve on the directions.
Doing both North/South Fortuna will kick your butt, but it's totally worth it. it starts pretty easy and sneaks some challenging inclines in. Good luck
A tough one but a good training run for hills. Also the location of one of my favorite half marathon trail races.
Great hike! A lot of fun! Steep incline though!
The steeper uphill sections are too steep and loose to ride for the enthusiast rider. It's work for those who like hiking their bike up South Fortuna. Why? Because some like the challenge. Great local trail that info often when running, biking or hiking a 40lb pack for fitness.
Definitely a good hike with plenty of ups and downs. Good views from the peak. It's just very brown but then again this is true of many of the SD hikes during the summer. Distance closer to 7mi
Lots of hill! Bring extra water and sunscreen. Total mileage was about 6.8
A good hike without the large numbers of hikers seen at many other local trails.
6.2 miles MY ASS! More like 7.2... Nice. Tough at times. Bring LOTS of COLD water. Very little shade. Steep incline if you take the loop to the right (East).
Great hike! I was on the trail for 6.8 miles. There is no shade, but there was nice breeze all day. Parked at the end of Clairemont Mesa. Blvd. and went clockwise, so South Fortuna was first. A Mission Trails ranger was posted about 1/2 way up the "Stairway to Heaven" climb encouraging the hikers. Those stairs are steep! An organized race was happening today. So I expect there were more people out there than usual, but still not at all crowded. I brought 2L of water and almost drained the Camelbak in the 2.5 hours I was moving. Saw a rattlesnake right at the beginning, which helped to get the blood pumping. Good times! Will be back for sure.
me and my fiance started a little late yesterday but overall we liked it, we want to go back again although I did not see any waterfalls.
Great experience with a lot of climbing if you go off the trails a little
A challenging, but enjoyable, hike. As stated below, bring sun protection and enough water as there is no shade on this hike. Based on everyone's complaints of the ineffective trail signs, I downloaded the AllTrails app for my iPhone. Definitely utilized the trail map on the app to make sure my friend and I didn't get lost, as the signs are definitely not helpful. I recommend hitting the North peak first, and then the South peak if doing the entire loop, as it's easier to walk down the massive stairs than up.
Make sure to use this app because it will literally save your life. It saved my life...here's my story: I decided to hike this as a challenge and indeed it was quite the challenge. I made the mistakes of hiking this alone, hiking with my small 6-month old Jack Russell puppy, hiking this toward the late evening (around 6pm) and definitely underestimating how confusing this trail can be. There are many trail divergences and you WILL get lost if you do not have a trail map. I was tracking the trail on this app most of the hike to make sure I was on the correct trail. The trail is a bit steep in some areas, both uphill and downhill. It starts off relatively leveled and flat until you hit the first peak. This trail is a loop, bringing you to BOTH North and South Fortuna peaks. It'll bring you to North first followed by South so it is double the challenge. It took me 3 hours round trip however I didn't really stop to take in the views nor did I have many water breaks. I also jogged a bit on my way down because I wanted to get back before it got dark. I got to North Fortuna summit right as the sun began to set. I hiked the remaining 3 or so miles during sundown/nighttime. Before you start this trail, there are signs warning about mountain lions. I found myself hiking this trail in pitch darkness (I had to use my phone's flashlight) with my puppy...aka possible lion food. I had about 80% phone battery however it went down to 11% about 80% of the hike or so because I was playing loud music (to deter lions), using this app to track the trail and using my flashlight. I have an iPhone 6s and it went from 80 to 11 while on low battery mode the entire time. Bring portable phone chargers. I also lost service for some parts of this trail. I also got lost during the night because my phone flashlight wasn't enough to see trails because the trails were hard to find. The South Fortuna steps are really, really scary to go down at night. I got lost in some tree covered areas and was really close to calling 911 because I was about to have an anxiety attack. I'm scared of the dark, I was alone, my puppy kept barking at things I couldn't see, I had low visibility from my phone's light and I saw I still had a ways to go from this trail app map. However, I tried to keep my calm, texted people of my whereabouts and thought about happy thoughts until I finally made it back to my car.
Here are the take-away tips from my experience:
-bring water/trail mix/jerky
-go early (if you prefer evening hikes, going at around 4-5pm would ensure your safe return before it gets really dark)
-wear sunscreen (no shade at all)
-wear a hat/sunglasses
-wear shoes with good tread (I managed with my Nikes but slipped a couple of times)
-bring portable phone chargers
-don't hike it alone
-play loud music to deter any animals (this hike is not crowded at all so you wouldn't be bothering anyone)
-do not bring a puppy if you plan to hike at night
-DOWNLOAD THIS APP AND TRACK YOUR TRAIL
Very steep, dry, views of freeway and can hear gunshots echoing from nearby range, pretty butterflies everywhere, lots of bees, dry, saw rabbits & roadrunner, no shade, did i mention it was dry?