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amazing hard hike

For a continuous moderately paced hike, you can make it up to the summit in 1 hour. If you start right before 7 the mountain will shade you up until the last mile of the hike. Between 2- 1 1/2 mile point from the summit there seems to be an endless set of steps that are pretty challenging. Past the potato chip rock there is not much else and a radio station that ruins part of the view, but overall a decent hike.

Good trail and easy to follow. Bring plenty of water and use sunscreen during the summer. Had my 4 kids with me (10 and under) and they were able to get to the top. It was definitely hot with minimal coverage, I’d like to do it again once it’s cooled down a bit. The views were worth the climb. The distance is a little off, it says it is 4.6 miles but we went 5.41 miles total.

Nice little climb, did get very hot towards the end of the morning plus very crowded.

fun and challenging ascent. gets really hot with minimal shade so pack plenty of water

Awesome trail, friendly people along the way just enough incline to get a good workout

Did on a hot day. Bring a lot of water! worth it for the fun potato chip rock pictures!

This hike makes you work for it. One hour up & 30 minutes down. I started before the sun and there were plenty of other friendly folks on the trail.

hiking
16 days ago

A nice workout. It could get very hot by 12noon. Start early. Nice views at the top!!!

A challenging hike with beautiful views!!! The potato chip rock at the peak was indeed very instagram worthy..

Easy to get to, didn’t see any rattlesnakes and the top is fun with the flags and a sunrise to start off your day.

Great workout

Coming down is harder than getting to the top. Recommend completing north, saddle and south in one shot.

You hike up Cowls Mountains and off to the side at the top you proceed to Pyles. Take plenty of water. Get there early because parking can be limited and turn wheels to curb. It took 2 hours and 23 minutes to do both hikes.

Great workout if you take the loop counter clockwise. Hiked it in about 2 hours. Lots of dog poop though. Hazy day. Heavy traffic. Local favorite right off the highway.

DEFINITELY read these reviews before taking this hike!!!! It is worth it once you get to the top but getting there can be challenging especially in July when I went!!! Bring lots of water, hat, shades, and wear light clothing. Enjoy the workout!!!!

Loved this trail when I hiked it the first time. Unfortunately, I went at 7am and the trail was closed due to excessive heat. :(

hiking
23 days ago

absolutely beautiful to hike for sunrise. no shade so earlier morning hikes are best in warm months. and youll beat the giant crowds.

This is an amazing hike but NOT FOR THE SUMMER! I went with a group of 6 including myself and we left way too late. Should note it was the end of July at 10am. Moderate hike but the sun is what killed us. Legit almost thought I was going to pass out. If you go during the summer don't bring your dog, and bring a crap ton of water!

hiking
24 days ago

Attempted to hike this midday during the heat, but due to the temperature and lack of shade on the trail we ended up detouring to Ramona Overlook and then back to the parking lot. Make sure to bring lots of water and sunscreen/hat - for the two of us we had about 5L of water and consumed most of it on our 4+ miles. Once you leave the small area of trees by the parking lot there is essentially no shaded areas on this trail. The views are beautiful! Would definitely do this trail again either earlier in the day or on a cooler day. There are non-flush toilets in the parking lot.

Awesome! Worth it when you get to the top

Extremely hot, and no shade at all. Wait for half an hour for the potato-chip photo. Good workout but too hot.

Great hike but it’s rated hard for a reason. I am an avid hiker and it was challenging. If you are looking for a less strenuous hike, start in Ramona. On a positive note, it is BEAUTIFUL & a great workout.

Good hike. Taking the advice of others I went right at the junction. Made it a much better hike. Would do it again anytime.

Very nice hike. Trail is well maintained and not too difficult. We started at about 6:15 am and it was still too crowded for my liking, but the scenery is beautiful and it is a good work out. If you go beyond the Potato Chip rock there are great boulders to relax on and enjoy some solitude!

Good workout. Rocky most of Trail so watch your step. It was very hazy at early morning so no real vista view from top this trip.

Awesome trial! My husband & I never hiked & decided let’s try it. Wow did it kick our butts. We also started at 1300 on a 100 degree day (don’t do that). It took us 3hours round trip. Beautiful views. Definitely wish it had more signs on how far to go. We brought 2-40oz hydroflasks, & a gallon of water + don’t forget some protein or PB&J’s! Overall amazing!

very good hike. To make it hard and the full 4.2 miles go right on the fork in the road. This will have you going up the stairs instead of coming down them.

Typical SoCal hike. Good workout and accurate distance. There are a few nice lookout points but for the most part it is an uncovered grind to the peak. We went in the early afternoon on a sunny day in June and it was HOT. No tree coverage but based on other reviews did not expect any. A solid hike and close to San Diego which is a plus.

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