Explore Want - 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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I love this hike- flat enjoyable path around lake to gradual incline to pretty steep hike as you get to the top- Im older so I find this challenging enough for exercise- always see quail and roadrunner or two with nice view of lake- love it!

I would wear more sturdy shoes as the rocks were taxing AND the trail was beautiful. provided for a great work out! sooo quiet for the most part. would have liked more written on trail markers than"stay on trail".

hiking
6 days ago

Parking right by the trailhead. Only saw two humans the entire time. Did the hike round trip in 2:40 at a leisurely pace with a few rests. Sick view at the top.

This is a nice hike- but beware of ticks right now. Nice views while on the trail but the best is on the top

I love this hike- I made a loop out of it. Easy to follow and many trails to go explore. I recommend it.

10 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.

hiking
11 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.

absolutely beautiful. this is on the must do list for any socal hiker. look out for snakes though.

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.

Not crowded during midday. Some rocky sections but mostly towards the top. Views of other mountains and rooftops of houses.

Great for trail running. A lot of different options here also. Look for "Cardiac Hill." There is 0 shade anywhere so make sure to bring water and wear sunscreen. I'll definitely be going back. I linked up with the trail that overlooks the 67, the ridgeline trail I think? I saw deer in the middle of the day. Very rare in SD.

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.

I've never seen anyone else on this trail which is how I like it. The views are ok and there's a fun little IRL easter egg near the top.

Wear full pants as there are a lot of close brush areas. Probably want long sleeves too to avoid scratches. Not a lot of cover. Definitely a nice little workout with good elevation gain.

Good little hike close to home (I'm in Descanso). We Started at the East Mesa Fire Rd which intersects the South Descanso Creek Trail and continued to the North Descanso Creek Trail. Everything is nice and green right now, there is even some water flowing through the creek, which will probably be dry in a few weeks. Its a nice gradual climb to the peak with a few switchbacks along the way. The trail is well established and it would take a lot of work to get lost, but bring a map and compass just in case. There are plenty of other trails in the area that you can use to make this a much longer hike. Great views from the top, you can see Stonewall Peak, Cuyamaca Peak and even my house (with binoculars).

hiking
20 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!

Great hike. There is a ranger station to use the restroom and refill water close to the end.

hiking
25 days ago

This is a very challenging hike and is worth to do. The first two miles are not too bad, but after those two miles it gets very steep. So be ready!! Make sure you bring plenty of water and few snacks. There are a few shaded areas on the trail so you can take a break. The views are amazing!!!

Great hike with plenty of beautiful views. Pretty difficult combination of length and elevation fluctuation. Bring plenty of water, some food to fuel the second half, long sleeves for wind, sunscreen and a hat to cover your face. Some people even had walking poles. If it’s not tough enough try running it! Have fun!!! (Took about about 4 and half hours with a couple stops and some light running mixed in on the way down)

Parking lot now closes at 7pm. I waited until after a nice rain which made the views spectacularly green. The DG was perfect for a good foot hold - no sliding especially going down those granite slopes. I brought 3L of water - drank most of it on this cool day which was perfect. I'm not an expert hiker...nor in fabulous shape, but I made it. It was a challenge both physically and mentally. I took many many breaks having to snack to keep me from shaking and feeling weak. Took me almost 7 hours. This was a "one and done" for me cuz this hike nearly brought me to tears! lol.

This is a nice little/quick hike. It took my Son and I ~1.5 hours to complete.

Great for kids, good surprise at end

Nice, changing hike. I brought 3L of water and drank it all by the end, even on a nice, cool day, so be prepared with plenty of water for the tough assend to the top. The gates closes at 6pm so park outside the gate on the side of the highway if you might be cutting it close on time or you're car will get locked in for the night.

Soo hard, is very long trail with a lot of mini mountans, but is work it, i lovet

Definitely the most beautiful and challenging hike in San Diego! It took me about 2:45 to make it to the summit with only a couple of short breaks and then about the same amount of time for the way back. With a long break at the top, the whole hike took about 6 hours! I recommend wearing hiking shoes and bringing at least 3 liters of water and a snack for the summit. Leave your dog at home!! Any hikers looking to test their endurance or just want to experience some beautiful views, this is the hike for you. Go now while it’s still cool outside and everything is turning green. Gates are currently locked at 6pm.

hiking
1 month ago

This is a great hike. I'm 57years old and normally lift weights so this was a different work out for me. It was my second hike in thirty years. My first being Rock house trail two days before.

This was fun but hard. Took me eight hours. I took lots of photos and videos and when I went up hill i had to treat it like a leg work out. Did a few steps till I got tired and stopped. Then did the same over and over.
By stopping a lot, I got to see the beauty of the hike and took some awesome shots. It rained a lot which was beautiful and there was mist steaming off the hill sides.

Like many say, bring good boots if you're not use to this type of hiking. But there was an elderly couple in their fifties running up the mountain but they ran to the El Capitan side. Two other hikers were back packing 40 lbs worth of weights.

The hike is harder in the mind than on your body. It just keeps going and going. If you are patient and don't push yourself to the edge of your limit but stay with in your limits, you'll make it just fine. I have no cardio but I stayed within my self and it was an amazing hiking experience. Just follow all the advice from the seasoned hikers and enjoy the beauty.

Oh and it took me eight hours. I may look like a bear, but I hike like a tortoise.lol

Loved this trail. First time I had gone. Took my pups it was nice not to many people and only one other dog. The chairs are so cool at the top.

Extremely rocky, so wear proper footwear. Steep inclines on the way up, great booty and leg workout! About 1:30 round trip.

The trail was beautiful and worth hard work. I made it to the peak in under 3 hours and played on the summit for another hour. I was exhausted heading down and I definitely needed more breaks, and it took me well over 3 hours to return to my car. I drank less than two liters of water but it was quite cold so I didn’t need to compensate for the extra heat. Make sure your shoes have good traction as the trail can easily give out on some areas.

They should rate this easy hard easy hard. It's challenging in that your heart rate will not go down (good thing). For every decline you do an incline is waiting for you.... this means on the way back as well. I can't imagine this trail in the summer, it is very exposed. Be safe have fun, happy trailing!

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