Explore Potential Hikes - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Potential Hikes Map

Amazing, the most beatiful

Start at the trail head and park. Follow the path that is well marked to the top. All up hill but feels great when you get there.

A real beaut! Nice and flat most of the way. hiked this in the rain, I felt like I was in England, but I've never been to England, so I don't know. Wouldn't have been surprised if I had seen a unicorn calmly lapping from the brook this trail follows for the middle third of the hike, but alas, I did not. Perhaps I didn't believe hard enough. Highly recommend for an easy-moderate hike.

Great hike with incredible scenery.

The Alltrails map is woefully inadequate. There are dozens of trails here that are not shown on your map. You could hike every day for months and still see new country in this wonderful area. It is also great for mountain bikes. Get into the back country by bike, then hike the steep trails, then fly back on the bike downhill.

13 days ago

3/3/18 Great hike! I definitely wasn't prepared for the cold weather and all the snow up there but the hike itself through the woods and meadows was gorgeous. I plan on going back soon to get some better views and hopefully better weather, a lot of fog rolled in on my way up so I didn't get to see any of the scenery from the summit.

Pictures and snow slowed me down so I took a little under 4 hours to hike it. I took the Azalea Glen trail up to the Azalea springs road, then the cuyamaca peak fire road from there. Took conejos trail back down, which takes you back to azalea springs.

Beautiful and not many people.

Fun hike and easy

20 days ago

Did this trail right after a storm dumped around 6 inches of snow. There was snow all the way up and back, at least 12 inches deep in places. It felt like 10 miles with the snow, but the landscape was epic.

Just a heads up before you do this trail- this route starts around Jamacha Elementary School. You walk along Jamul Road for about 3 miles before you actually ever get to the trail head (along a thin neighborhood road with cars driving by at 60mph). The actual McGinty trail is great, but pretty tough in some stretches. The view at the top is beautiful on a clear day- you can see all the way out to Point Loma, Mt. Soledad, and beyond. At the bottom of the trail, you have to basically walk across the golf course... and wonder around going back and forth trying to find your way back to the starting point. Overall, it was about 10 Miles, but I’d recommend just parking at the main trail head (there’s room for about 8-10 cars) and hiking in and out, not doing the loop.

Lovely hike. Important to note that this is an area that requires a Land Pass. Nobody checked ours, but it’s safe to get one ahead of time.

26 days ago

Quiet hike. At the peak you can see every surrounding mountain from Mount McGinty, Lawson, Gaskill, El Cajon... amazing views! Good alternative to Cowels Mountain!

28 days ago

Male, 35 (and female companion, 29)
6', 240 lbs
Fitness level: average
Hiking experience: intermediate
Date of hike: 02/10/18
Pace: easy/moderate
Total time: A little under 3 hours (app clocked us at 2:35 movement time)
Weather temp: Didn't track, it was probably around 60-70

Definitely do this counterclockwise, starting from the Azalea Glen Road trail and make your way up to Conejos and then to the Fire Road (paved road).

Beautiful scenery, one of the very few hikes in San Diego where you can actually see trees and pines. Huge, beautiful pine trees!

The hike for the most part is easy until the climb at the end, it is quite demanding on your cardio, especially if you're not in optimal shape. But just take it easy and you'll be fine.

Highly recommend this hike, probably my favorite in SD.

Trails aren’t well marked and lots of rock along the trail. However, the scenery is pretty and it’s not too crowded.

30 days ago

Pretty steep incline and the terrain is very rocky which makes the hike more difficult since you have to be careful where you step. Lots of routes and confusing we had to use the app to make sure we went the right way after making a wrong turn.

Great workout, very steep with little flat areas. My favorite part was the lack of people, the various and thriving vegetation, the beautiful view, and little treasures left at the top.

The entrance is a little ways beyond the visitors sign, and it's a small opening in between a fence.

great hike! Viejas is one of my favorites and its only 30 mins from my house. first time taking this route. shorter than alternate. pretty rocky and narrow at times. began at 6 am and only ran in to 2 other people on their way down already. someone replaced the small American flag with a nice beautiful new one. the views are incredible at the top there's a rock wall and geo marker with vodkas on it. thank you to whoever did that! easy to follow trail up. its always pretty windy at top so if you're going early in the morning or later in the day layer up. on the way down the trail you'll come to a cleared area with rocks sometimes in different patterns, go right down that hill not straight. I did that then realized I was going the wrong way. oh and the coffee can needs a new notebook ill bring one next time in case someone doesn't.

1 month ago

This is the most physically demanding hike that I have ever done. Now, this means that a) I have not/do not hike all that much and b) I have R.A. & primary lymphedema in both legs so am already dealing w/ some physical things that most people are not. This also means that fully capable individuals have no room to complain here because if I did it, you can too! This hike goes straight up and is rocky and has no shade. However, after turning around and looking out toward the ocean for the first time about 30 minutes into the hike, I was sold. The views while going up as well as from the summit are stunning! Because the terrain did require a lot of attention, I really did not mind that there wasn’t all that much to look at while on the trail since it is pretty right much dirt, rocks, and low dry shrubs. Typical for this area though and did think how scary it would be if a fire came through this area since I felt like I truly wouldn’t be able to navigate out of there at any faster speed than my slow and steady march. Great feeling of accomplishment w/ this venture and literally took about five breaks going up but was fine w/ doing so because of the great vantage points-it’s pretty neat to look down at a plane flying below you! Definitely recommend shoes w/ a decent toe guard and rock plate; there are only about three stretches less than ten feet in length that are relatively rock free; this is far from a relaxing stroll for me at least and I would steer clear any day w/ a high UV Index or if it gets hotter than 75 degrees. In late November there was a nice breeze and the sun wasn’t as searing as other times of the year even though we have had no winter at all so far late 2017/early 2018. Hoping for a cool Spring so trying to squeeze as much inland hiking in while I still can!

An amazing view from the lake side

Id give it a 3.5 star review only because we did an out & back up the paved fire road instead of the loop...super steep & hard on the lower body. Still doable, but so boring! Take the fire road on your way down the loop! Also, theres huge gaudy satellite antennas at the top with a barbed wire gated fence. Totally ruins the views at the peak trying to dodge cables in your photos. About halfway or so up (or down) the fire road theres a cute little lookout with a bench. The views are breathtaking! Youll want to take a minute to take it all in!

Great little hike! Lots of greenery made it not feel like the traditional San Diego desert hike. It was flat almost the whole way and had great views. We didn’t find the trail particularly hard to follow, and our dog had a great time. We’ll probably go back sometime!

Pretty exhausting climb. Climbs @ a rate of 1000 ft per mile, steep grade (a total of 1500 ft from trailhead to summit over 1.4 miles). Today, the views were hazy but on clear days you are rewarded with 360 deg views. Rocky outcrop, watch out for loose stones and your knees on the way down. Ideal time to start would be 7:00-7:30am.

Great hike for the kids, water features are always a nice way to take a break halfway through. especially in San Diego where water features are almost nonexistent. Its a pretty gradual descent down into the canyon which flattens out as you get closer to the Pine Valley Creek. We went in the afternoon around 3, which was perfect. Hopefully we get some more rain this year, because I'm planning on a springtime return here. I could see how it could be scorching in this area around summer time, so bring lots of water. Should really call it the Espinosa Trail through Horsethief Canyon.

1 month ago

A lot of switchbacks up and down that give a solid workout.

We took a different route to get to cuyamaca peek. We parked at Paso picacho campground and hiked up a maintenance/fire Road. This made it a pretty easy climb. It was Steep at the end, but no big deal because the road was so well-maintained. amazing views and pleasant hike. This was about a 6 mile out and back.

We did this loop counter clockwise, which allowed us to go down the very steep and boring paved fire road at the end. The steepest and rockiest part in this direction was after the spring.

1 month ago

Did this hike with my girlfriend on Saturday, 01/27/18. Not terribly difficult until the incline on the Lookout fire road just before the top. Took us 4h, 49m moving time. 9.2 miles, avg speed 1.9 mph, top speed 4.5 mph. Came up Azalea Glen Trail, Took Conejos Trail to the Fire Road up, and also on the way back (no interest in taking that paved fire road all the way down). Took Azalea Glen Road (dirt) from the Azalea Spring Jct down to the campground. Coming down was about 1.5 hours total with stops and picture taking. Most of the trails were great and a nice mix. Saw 2 deer a mile in and 6 at the campground at sundown, also Wild Turkeys on the side of Middle Peak. Views up top were amazing. Windy and cold, but there's a lumber bench set up behind the building, we ate lunch at. Good windbreaker from the Santa Ana winds..
(View recording for route taken)

1 month ago

Not sure why it says difficult, it definitely wasn’t hard. Very beautiful hike though! Took about 3 hours to complete. I went during the Santa Ana winds so it was suuuuuuper windy and cold at the top. Will definitely be back!

pretty cool until you hit the golf course and have to walk on Jamul Rd. Recommend point to point with two cars or out and back. The route I did is three stars, without the GC it would’ve been five

This is a wonderful trail with hills and valleys and you are in sunlight most of time. NOTE: the sad thing is the trails are marked poorly. A first timer or even second timer will actually have a hard time navigating as where to turn, etc. this could all be taken care of in a few hours if the folks in charge of this trail would get off their butts and actually do something here. I love the trail. I am visiting out here for a month and it took me a few times to decide which trail to use in order to get back to the trail head. Also, maybe a bench at the trail head would be nice too. Whoops, we wouldn’t want to over do things and and make it too friendly of a place.

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