Santa Margarita River Trail

MODERATE 227 reviews

Santa Margarita River Trail is a 5.2 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Fallbrook, CA that features a river and is rated as moderate. 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.

5.2 miles 570 feet Out & Back

dogs on leash

kid friendly

hiking

mountain biking

trail running

walking

horseback riding

forest

river

views

wild flowers

wildlife

I-15 N to Fallbrook exit. Take Mission Rd. 5 mi. E; turn N onto Pico Ave. (becomes De Luz Rd.). Continue 2.4 mi.; go R @ fork onto Sandia Creek Dr. N. Parking area is in 1 mi. (just before bridge); trailhead is E of lot.

hiking
2 days ago

2 days ago

2 days ago

awesome hike. my dogs loved it

hiking
5 days ago

Took the dogs here last weekend and they loved it! Can't believe how much water is in the river. Sandy walk but not like the beach so easy to walk through and there is plenty of shade and benches along the way. Only thing that could improve is trail markings as there are lots of splits in trail. Trail is maintained by locals out picking up trash. People if you hike....make sure to clean up after yourself! Pretty flat hike so should be easy for all skill levels. Also trail does cross river at one point so wear water shoes or hiking sandals, or just take off your shoes to cross!

8 days ago

Nice hike. Lots of shade and water.

10 days ago

First timer and I loved it. Most definitely will hiking this one for the next couple days.

10 days ago

Very nice trail! The watering hole was a little low when we walked it but still a wonderful trail!

hiking
18 days ago

19 days ago

Such a beautiful trail

20 days ago

Beautiful trail! Easy . Very crowded on this Labor Day holiday, glad we got there early very little parking and the lot was jam packed when we left at 12:30. Definitely do again but during the week next time. Still alot of water :)

hiking
21 days ago

sweet trail

hiking
1 month ago

This is a great hike. A flowing creek and trees are a rarity in Southern California and this trail has both. There are lots intensely sunny areas, but you will quickly find shade when you need a break. It's a fairly easy trail, but there are some moderate up hill sections. The trail is very sandy and I would not describe it as well marked, but it would take work to get lost. Family, dog and horse friendly. No restrooms available, parking is fairly limited (I arrived just before 9a, it was full when I left, 11:00a), and there are strict times when the lot is open 8a-7p.

1 month ago

Nice hike. Beautiful scenery. Great shady areas along the water creek. Dog friendly. The only bummer I would say is...I wish there were trash cans available. There was a lot a random trash debris and dog waste.

hiking
1 month ago

6.5 miles of great hiking! Such a paradise right in our back yard! Will do this one again soon.

hiking
1 month ago

Had a Blast! An awesome place to hike, bring ur dogs, swim, watch wildlife!

1 month ago

It's nice to have water here in August! The trails were well defined and easy to make my own loop.

hiking
1 month ago

Is there water up there now? Or is it dried up

1 month ago

Pretty trail not hard unless washed out paths then a little rock climbing but big beautiful trees provide nice shade

hiking
1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

STRICT PARKING ENFORCEMENT. The trail is open from 8:00 AM - 7:00 PM. A parking enforcement officer parks by the gate about an hour before the park closes and then blocks off the entrance at 7:00 to either write you a citation or make sure your vehicle is towed. If you're starting your hike late in the day, don't take any chances -- leave with time to spare.