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hiking
no shade
rocky
washed out
12 hours ago

Love this trail !

hiking
no shade
1 day ago

There’s a lot of misinformation on trail distance in the reviews. The trail is longer than described but not 14-15 miles. I hiked El Cajon Mtn today (second time) and my GPS read 11.8 miles round trip, which is consistent with my last trip up. Also, the total vertical gain is about 3,800 feet due to the trail dropping then gaining again and again. I’m a fan of this mighty little SoCal mountain due to its close proximity to SD and the ability it gives to train for its bigger brothers, or sisters, that lie north in the San Bernadinos and Sierras... minus the effects of altitude.

a good exercise hike not so much for adventure due to it being paved the whole way up but overall a good workout! and great views

trail running
3 days ago

Great heart pumper to get your day going. Up and down in 38 minutes jogging/hiking. Trail running shoes help a lot with the rocky terrain. Dogs loved it! Only met 3 other people on a Friday morning. Pretty good for Mission trails which is always busy.

This trail was so steep! It was very hard, but the climb was worth the view!

Really enjoyed this trail. The actual “potato chip” was cool to see but surrounded by a ton of people. The trail in itself is I think the actual draw as it had great views and a nice amount of incline. Couldn’t find any bathrooms here but there are facilities four minutes up the road at the Iron Mt trailhead.

Great little hike!

Great hike, beautiful views on the way up and down. Get ready for some steep up and downs the whole way. Took 5 hours round trip, 2:45 up, 2:15 down. 2 liters of water was plenty. Would be brutal during summer, highly recommend during winter months. Peak has nice rocks to have lunch at.

hiking
8 days ago

Love this short yet Steep hike. Beautiful views.

Did this hike on Sunday, January 13th 2019.

I’ll first start off by mentioning that you should pay no attention to those who say “you’re not really making the effort if you don’t hike the long way”. I’m calling all you out.
This was a good SOLID leg burning, heart pumping hike. This said after hiking down and back up out of Havasupai. Hats off to those I saw jogging it. Going to use this route to prepare for Whitney amongst others.
Do your research here. 1200’ over 2 miles = don’t be silly and try to take your kids up it after church on Sunday unless you know they can do it.

Great views await you at the top, from the Coronado Islands, Downtown, Cowles Mountain and up to Oceanside/Camp Pendleton even with the cackle of folks waiting, posing and trying to get that perfect photo on the “chip”. Would love to come up here to see some of those late summer sunsets.

If you are looking for a quiet, relaxing, back to nature hike, THIS IS NOT THE ONE. Go somewhere else to enjoy yourself and if you do decide to hike here and are looking for that, then don’t complain.

Dog owners: pick up your damn dog $h!t and haul it down with you. No one is going to do it for you, and as the signs say, there is no “poop fairy”. I was completely taken back by the lack of respect and endless baggies of crap tossed and conveniently placed for “pickup”. Respect the spot and the outdoors, or you might end up on the wrong side of a flying turd. Karma’s got her eye on you.

on McGinty Mountain Trail

nature trips
9 days ago

Good nature walk that keeps steep fast but a great view from the top. Crowded at beginning but empty by the end.

Sweet hike! The view at the end is awesome and is not crowded at all.

1st time hiking Kwaay Paay. Intense quick hike. Very steep. I surely had fun. Loved the stairs. I'll definitely do this more often. I usually hike Cowles mtn... love it, but it's always crowded unlike Kwaay. Saw only 7 people during my afternoon hike.

Perfect weather for a hike today! Glad we did it probably won’t do it again. It was on our list and happy we can cross it off. We clocked “round trip” 15 miles from parking lot to summit. Highly recommend bringing your hiking poles, softened the highs and lows of the trial. Went on forever! It was a nice hike and we had optimal weather beautiful cloud coverage with a cool breeze. Nice view, in my opinion not that great of a reward for the work you put into it. Now that was a HIKE! My toes are killing me! Glad I did it... NEXT!

It’s ok but not that great hard to find which way to go trail everywhere no sign where does star we when around trying to find the flag .

Loved this. Fun, challenging trail with nice views along and from the top. Slid a few times, watch the loose rock!

hiking
11 days ago

This trail is definitely no joke. I completed it yesterday by myself. You definitely want 3 or more liters of water and plenty of snacks, drink water before you arrive not coffee like me.. My phone tracked 12.7 miles in and out(I explored a bit at the top adding about .5 miles) it’s not the distance that was difficult for me, but rather the ups and downs on the way back my knees weren’t conditioned for as I haven’t hiked since about 6 months ago up At Yosemite. I completed it in jeans and tennis shoes and small back pack starting with a sweatshirt. A few areas on the way down I was wondering how some hiking boots would have helped soften the blow.

I arrived at 7:30 am and luckily they were opening the parking lot because the sign says 8am to 5pm. It was in the 70s during most of the hike, perfect weather. I can’t imagine doing this hike in the summer, you couldn’t bring enough water. I got back to my vehicle at about 1:10pm after spending maybe a half hour or so at the summit. On the way down I had to stop several times as my knees were cramping up. I didn’t experience any wild animals, just a few passing hikers on the way back down.

I highly recommend for the view and the challenge. Will be doing again in the future.

hiking
11 days ago

great quick intense hike. part of the trails are narrow so be aware if you have your pup with you.

I’m nearly 65 years old and did this hike at a slow and steady pace with poles. Definitely doable if you hike regularly on hills and have good strong legs. I didn’t find it too bad...I was surprised. If you’re not use to hiking steep hills over long distances this hike will kick your butt at any age. The view at the top is the best...well worth it.

Great short climb hike up, 1.2 miles, and fun trail run down. Did this hike after hiking Cowles Mtn. Not too many people during week midday.

My father and I went on this hike on January 6th 2019 and we enjoyed it.
There are many steep hills, hence breaks were taken when necessary. But it pays off to do the hike because once you get up to Potato Chip Rock you can get the best pictures there.
I would also recommend to dress warm if you are planning to hike this during the winter.

This is a great hike close by in San Diego. It’s pretty steep and rocky so definitely wear hiking shoes or shoes with very good grips. I’d also recommend going on a cool day or very early as there is no shade at all. It’s easy to get confused where the right trail starts so be sure to go in towards the left where the power towers are.

I would actually rate this is as "Hard" than "Moderate". I attempted it with a friend in September around 10 am and could not get to the top. Although concrete, there is a significant incline that takes your breath away (literally).
I went back on Jan 1st by myself, a little more prepared, at 8 am in the morning. Strong wind and biting cold aside, if you take stops along the way and enjoy the beauty of the Poway area, you will finish this. Took my about 2 hours to reach the Potato Chip and back. Did not spend much time up at the Potato chip as my fingers had frozen beyond feeling. Recommend an early start in general as parking is also easy. If going between Dec-Jan, cover yourself up like you would in snow. Otherwise, hiking gear with lots of water, sunscreen and a hat. Planning to do the 8 mile hike and compare as that's rated "Hard".

16 days ago

the start of the trail is crappy....because dog owners either let their dogs poop on the trail or leave the bags of poop behind. other than the start , it's a nice hike. great views of mountains and one particular house.

Going up was challenging but still OK. The 7 mile trip from the summit to the parking, man that was hard. Other than that it’s pretty much doable if you have experience trekking. Be safe out there!

It’s is one of best hikes. It has beautiful views and an awesome accomplishment!! It is very hard and I suggest you train yourself well before taking this challenge!!

Did a New Years 2019 hike. Primitive trail, which is a plus in my book. No enhancements (no steps or fences). Remnants of a switchback on the lower half, now eroded and gully-washed. Traffic now ignores the switchbacks. A fairly strenuous hike up. Tricky footing coming down. Awesome views into Mexico, ocean, downtown, and El Capitan. Nice alternative to Cowels as it’s less crowded. Will do again.

This is an extremely hard trail...not just hard. There’s more than a few steep inclines and declines. At times it seems like no end! The final ascent is pretty much rock climbing for half a mile. When we went today it was cold and windy especially at the top and my hands nearly froze even with gloves. It also got kinda warm in some spots due to the fact there’s almost no shade. Nice views along the way. Definitely glad I did it, but won’t be rushing to return any time soon. Not recommended unless you enjoy climbing for hours and are an experienced hiker/runner, given this is probably one of the hardest hikes in San Diego. I’m more experienced than most and it took about 4.5hrs for total of about 11.3 miles (not the stated 10.6) at a steady rate of hike and running at some of the declines.

hiking
20 days ago

Decent enough trail, be sure to go on a cloudy of chilly day, as there's literally no shade. Pretty steep in parts.Trail itself doesn't have too much to look at, but views are good.

Great to do in the rain. Good views of downtown and the surrounding mission trails at the top.

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