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

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beautiful and clean trail

Awesome trail! Gradual incline on the switchbacks. I am fat and hate switchbacks but this was moderate and doable. Some areas are Rocky ankle twisters, also a few rock scrambles. Pay the $10 to park at the campground don't cheat it that money helps maintain the trails. Don't be a ass. Bathrooms at the campground are clean picnic tables for lunch, nice place. Julian up the road is nice stop for an ice cream reward.

I will forever have a special place in my heart for this mountain. In April of 2018 I started my new journey to lose weight. I am so proud to say by July 2018 I had lost 40lbs. I hiked and still hike Cowles 2-3 time a week and that was it. This hike is great for beginners and experienced hikers. Don’t give up in the hard areas you can do it! The view is worth it. I like to cut from the front trail to the back trail at the top for a nice steep incline at the top. Have fun!

Great trail. Cool off in the pool. Take lots of water!

Fun, but no water even after heavy rain fall.

it was awesome

I DID IT! Woohoo!

Me and my son did this hike two weeks ago and we really like it the only thing that there was no water but it was breezy and nice, no rope though we were looking forward to use the rope but we did have fun!

Been living here my whole life and didn’t know this trail existed until this plastic summer, hidden from the hustle and bustle of Del Mar and Solana Beach with beautiful scenery and fun cave hiking. Pretty narrow but very kid friendly.

Good morning hike. Incline route all the way to the top. Not crowded. Overall good for beginners with great views from the top.

hiking
11 days ago

Gets your heart pumping at the top :) beautiful views the whole hike short but definitely worth putting on checklist

Great trail for any age group and fur babies. I'm def not in shape and was fine. Rocky ground so my hiking boots helped immensely! Hiked Saturday around 530 pm and headed down as the sun was setting, perfect weather and time. Less ppl then the last time I went on a Sunday.

hiking
12 days ago

Uneventful and busy. If you are new to hiking its good though.

Rating this a 5 because it’s so close to Solana Beach/Cedros Ave, but you feel completely out of any city. The slot is really cool! I was wearing my 14 month old in a backpack and alone, didn’t see anybody else there, and halfway through the slot I got a little worried about how steep it might be for me. I followed my gut and turned around and went up the other side. Saw pictures on insta that some people brought their kids in there and had no problems, but didn’t want to take the chance since I was alone. Will definitely be coming back soon just to make it through or trade off watching the kiddo. I went on on weekday morning and hardly anybody on the trail, I’m sure it’s busy on the weekend though so start early or early evening for a sunset view.

Very cool trail! The trails that go under the freeway are temporarily closed while they work on the overpass. The slot canyon is strenuous but fun, great place for photos.

This is known as the shortcut to the cactus to clouds but it’s still pretty intense. I loved the scenery on this hike. I did this one about a month ago (early September) and it was about 100 degrees in Palm Springs but it’s about 30 degrees cooler at the top of the tram in the park so pack accordingly. I tried to get a ticket for the tram on the website but they were out so I just showed up 30 mins before the first tram at 8am and was able to get a ticket no problem. The hike is pretty easy to follow and shaded most of the way so it helps. The last 10th of a mile requires some scrambling but nothing too crazy.

Overall a good experience.

hiking
17 days ago

This hike is quite challenging. It is challenging because of its distance of over 18 miles and the over 5000 feet of elevation gain. We did it as a group hike at a moderate pace and it took us 9.5 hours to complete it. We did take a very long break at the summit and another good one at the PCT & Wellman's Divide junction. It is definitely not for a beginner hiker.

hiking
20 days ago

Loved it. Brought my three children and we had an amazing family time, very nice view of the lake. Not crowded at all on Wednesday morning. My 7 year old boy was running and jumping on the way back. A little harder for my 9 year old daughter but still loved it.

trail running
21 days ago

Used to run this regularly in college, did again while visiting friends due to proximity. Perpetually busy, worn out trail. Much better options out there!

Easy. Pretty. Dog friendly.

It was my first time here and I loved this hike! This is one of the most beautiful hikes I’ve done in California! It’s more of a 4-mile trail, round trip. Definitely start this hike early in the morning to take advantage of the shade!

Amazing hike. Super windy and cold at the top, so dress in layers!

A must see. This hike sealed the deal for me and my move to San Diego.

Very nice!

hiking
29 days ago

Good hike and great training for other big hikes like Mt. Whitney or the Grand Canyon. The trail was in pretty good condition though a few places could use some trail work as the brush made the trail a bit tight in spots. The majority of the trail is good and was not hard to follow. There were also numerous signs at trail junctions to help keep you on the correct trail.

Love this hike!
Good exercise. Great View. Close to home.

Very pleasant easy hike with patches of shade, a bit of water, and birds.

on Stonewall Peak Trail

hiking
1 month ago

9/13/2018: Short, sweet...perfect. We planned to come here for a sunset hike, but we misjudged midweek traffic and an unusually busy workday for me, so it ended up being a sunset/night hike. We arrived at 6:15 PM on a Thursday afternoon (an hour later than planned). Paid $10 and parked at the Paso Picacho Campground lot (if you’re arriving later in the day like we did, be sure to bring exact $$$, since there isn’t an attendant later in the day to provide change. One could argue that you don’t NEED to pay the honor system pay envelope “after hours,” but who wants to chance it? Not me; I have no idea where Park Rangers check the lots later in the day. And who wants to be that person anyway?) Walked across the 79 to the trailhead and embarked on the ascent. The “hardest” part of this easy hike is in the very beginning. Once you’re past that initial hump, the rest of the hike will be easy switchbacks, with a fun section at the very end “scrambling” up the rock faces (there are railings the entire way at the top, so fear not. It’s easy).

Made it to the peak in about 45 min, exactly at 7:00 PM to catch the sunset (with a couple short breaks along the way for photo ops). We made it back to the car by 7:30-45. It was full dark by the time we made it back down to the parking lot, so we took it slow coming down (good thing we had headlamps to help us along the way). The headlamps attracted a bunch of flying insects, so be sure to bring bug spray if you’re doing a night hike. It won’t stop them from flying towards the light, but it will keep them from landing/crawling on you.

We came across just two other hikers and a bunny on the way up, but otherwise, it was quiet and peaceful (save for a rattle from the brush we heard earlier in the hike, but didn’t see the critter itself). Overall, would highly recommend as a midweek sunset/night hike. The stars were drop dead gorgeous on the way down. It was absolutely worth the drive.

I love this hike!

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