Explore SD Classic 10 Peak Challenge - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

SD Classic 10 Peak Challenge Map
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21 minutes ago

Great views. Enjoyed the views from here more than at Cowles. Well maintained trails. Was able to hike alone and feel safe. Very well trafficked.

tough hike but a great work out. the down hills are steep on way back..

Had a great time hiking Volcan mountain today, the grade is pretty steep but some well placed tree canopy’s provide some shaded patches through out. Highly recommend, the view from the top is well worth it

trail running
2 days ago

Loved running El Cajon mountain this morning. It was a definitely a challenge with constant inclines and declines along with some rocky areas that watching footing was a must. Beautiful views. Can’t wait to go back!

Is a good hiking with the family, but if you child or pet is not use to it can be very hard for them.

hiking
3 days ago

Great hike this morning, not too crowded. Started about 9am. Awesome views all around from the top.

Took 5 oak trail to summit. Good hike and good views. multiple outlook points at summit and during hike!

check out instagram.com/gregszymbor for photos and more hikes

One of my favorite hikes! I brought two kids with me and they did very well! Lots of walking/hiking but very worth it!

Not too hard , fun

hiking
8 days ago

Easy hike, great for family hikes, dog walks, etc. Did a sunset hike yesterday. Took roughly 50 mins to summit st decent pace. would recommend flash lights and/or headlamps if doing aunset hike. Trails are well taken care of and maintained. Picnic tables at summit. Nice views of ocean, San Diego cityscape and point loma.

Visit instsgram.com/gregszymbor for photos and other great hikes!

hiking
9 days ago

I was most surprised by a family that pushed a baby in. Baby stroller to the top of the this beautiful Peak. The 360 degree view was marred by mist or possibly smog to the west, so you couldn’t quite see the Pacific Ocean. Otherwise it was a sunny blue sky day with 15-20 mph winds. We met a couple dozen other hikers, including a group of Japanese teenagers coming up from the Paseo Pacheco Campground, where we parked for $10.

Great and pretty easy trail. Good for dogs too

Amazing view! I’d recommend taking the Five Oak Trail which makes the hike a little longer but there are more beautiful views that way

backpacking
12 days ago

Beautiful hike in the beginning, but after you hit the summit and then decend it gets incredibly rocky and tough. Climbing up the south side of the mountain after camping in the valley was really tough for me.

At the bottom of the valley go past the gate and walk approximately 2 more miles and hit a small waterfall. We heard tons of frogs and had a delightful sleep amongst them. But let me repeat, hiking up that south side of the mountain was really tough. Worth it to sleep among the frogs and waterfall however. I gave this a three star only because I found this hike so difficult.

horseback riding
12 days ago

Great horseback trail in cool weather. No shade.

hiking
13 days ago

This is a medium difficulty trail with a nice view at the top. It felt longer than 5.2 miles and my hubby and I did it in about 3 hours.

Beautiful views

14 days ago

This hike is challenging but worth it. The only thing I would strongly recommend is bringing plenty of water and sunscreen. There is a sign at the beginning of the trail with recommendations on the amount of water to consume on this hike. We went on a day that was a little too hot and brought 5.5 liters of water and that wasn’t enough for the both of us. We ended up rationing water the last 1.5 miles of the hike. There is not a lot of shade to give yourself a reprieve from the sun and I ended up getting sunburned really badly. The hike has a steep incline on the way up and plenty of incline on the way back as well. In final, plenty of water, snacks, and sunblock.

PARKING: you'll have to park within the camp ground so be sure to read the signs and not park in lots that have been reserved. ALSO - a few websites note that you need an ADVENTURE PASS to park but i parked without a pass (without researching ^_^') and luckily didn't get ticketed. However, parking at the Observatory is free - just not at the campground. :D

ANYWAY, from the campground - try to find parking midway into the campground so you're near the amphitheater...cause that's where the trail head is. You'll come across A LOT of chipmunks and squirrels (maybe even some on the road :( you know what i mean) but i think the most annoying critters are the gnats and flies - especially if you go near the afternoon.

I think i digressed. Where am I?

The hike is pretty straight forward with no branching trails (from what i remember) and with gradual inclines. I recommend hiking early in the morning (possibly around 7 or 8) to avoid the gnat swarming around in the heat. I think i saw a few deer but i could be wrong. I get my animals mixed up sometimes.

The hike seems scenic but 15 minutes into it - i started hearing a low guttural roar, which quickly intensifies and then disappear. Yeah, the trail is actually adjacent to a road that actually leads to the Observatory. Kind of kills the whole alone in the woods mood but meh.

ANNNNNYWAY, about an hour into the hike - you'll finally reach the observatory. Past the parking lot (i wish i had driven myself up there and pretend i actually did the hike - no one would know...) you'll see the museum and gift shop to the right. pretty cool stuff in there.

A little further up is the actual Observatory, which you can actually go in and read all about Hale and the telescope. Pretty cool stuff. BTW - PLUTO IS A PLANET!!!

After you've had your fill of interstellar education (btw, there's a tour you can join for cheap), hike your way back the same way you came.

Overall, pretty enjoyable hike with little human traffic. I heard there's a pretty cool night hike led by one of the rangers or employees or something. Something to think about.

hiking
15 days ago

I found it really hard but I made it....I did puke at the end as it was very challenging for an old guy like me. Tough hike, only take it on if you ready to work.

Bring more water than you already have.

Definitely a tough, “up hill both ways” kind of hike. The views from the top of the peaks is quite impressive as you gaze out toward the sea. Bring a hat and lots of water as there is little to no shade. An early start is key, especially in the warmer months. Concur on having footwear with ankle support and good traction. If the parking lot is full, you can park along the road without issue. It just adds a bit more distance to your overall trek. A friend and I did this hike (~13 total) under 5hrs with rest stops and breaks at the top of the two peaks.
Enjoy!

Didn’t have time to go past the Jeep today but took a 35# loaded backpack in an effort to train for Mt Williamson and I have to say that is definitely the toughest hike I’ve done in the area so far! A hat would be a good idea, as I kept sweating all the sunblock off and ended up quite burnt.

hiking
19 days ago

Great, well-maintained trail. Easy/Moderate trail with a slow incline throughout. We went with a group with ages 6-60 and everyone had a blast.

22 days ago

This hike took 2 hours at a moderate pace. Beautiful views and perfect for dogs in good shape. There is no shade and I could see it being super hot in the summer. There are picnic tables at the top if you bring a lunch, but it’s a busy trail so go early :)

hiking
22 days ago

Great hike. Conejos trail is definitely a challenge and it’s a good workout going up. The views are spectacular.

This is a very difficult hike. Not for a first timer. Wear appropriate shoes, preferably with ankle supports. I ran out of 3 liters of water just as I neared the parking lot. Bring snacks as well. Check out the free Museum at Barona after the hike. It's just a little further up the road and has a lot of the native and natural history in it.

There are a couple of different offshoots from the main trail as well. Check out the "mines" (shallow holes in the rocks) for a nice shady break. They're only a few hundred feet up the hill from where the sign is. This is probably the best strenuous rated hike this close to the city.

hiking
23 days ago

GREAT first trail completed in the San Diego area! Not too easy but not too hard.

hiking
23 days ago

Fun little hike. Once you get past the PCT trail and on to the main trail up to Monument Peak it can get very narrow with overgrown hedges. I would suggest wearing pants and something long sleeved that you would mind getting hung or brushed up against some branches. Otherwise, a very good time. View from the top is great. Rated moderate, but I would call this an easy one.

hiking
24 days ago

Wow this hike is hard! I would highly recommend not doing this hike when it’s warm out. I took 2.5 liters of water on a 75-degree day and ran out with 4 miles still left... so definitely bring a lot of water. The inclines on the way back will break your heart each time they come into view, but the sense of accomplishment from this hike is so worth it!

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