Great Challenge of a hike. Bring Hedge clippers though and if you look it has amazing sites. You can even see the pacific half way through the loop.

trail running
1 month ago

Beautiful trail. Well defined and great views. Parked for free and campground was deserted. But it was a Thursday. Would do it again, and also Dripping Springs.

Hiked in July. Bring lots of water. I carried 6 liters. 2 of the 6 liters ended up on my head, face, body. Well worth it! More like 15 miles round trip when you turn around at the very top. There is a sign post where the Palomar Magee Trails meets the Dripping Springs Trail. It's not a true peak. I thought about continuing the loop to make it a total 19 miles down the Wild Horse Trail, but I didn't want to push my luck for the day. Definitely considering doing an overnighter and camp near the sign posts. I hiked solo and took my time and had an MRE for lunch, so I spent nearly 10 hours on the trail. Certainly not the fastest I can go, but I really had the day to myself. Paid $5 for self parking, probably going to get an adventure pass. I was certainly tired and sore at the end of the day, yet so satisfied!

Good workout. No shade whatsoever so plan the timing accordingly. Early morning for summer time. I believe it does a loop but I caved in after 6 miles in and turned around

If you go in summer have lots and lots of water. Hike starts at Dripping Springs campground. If you don't have a America the Beautiful NPS annual pass you have to pay to park.

2 months ago

3 months ago

Not realistically accessible at this time.
July 2017: excessive brush overgrowth, no foot traffic, and fallen trees have rendered the connecting trail loop between the 2 legs (dripping springs and wild horse) effectively inaccessible. As-is anticipate 2-3 hours to crawl your way through the bushes (gps needed when loosing the trail). If you really want to go through, I'd recommend bringing pruning/cutting equipment.

Parking is limited to a small pay-to-park area outside of the campground; however, the trailhead is very easy to find off the main road. The trail itself is very easy to follow and mostly clear of debris. There are a few areas that have low hanging limbs but nothing that prevents completing the trails. Good views and no climbs that I would classify as steep, but there is a good overall elevation gain. Overall it was a great trail. I began hiking just before 10 and finished just before 3. Highly recommend bringing more water than you expect to need as there is no water source along the trail and you can expect nearly continuous sun exposure.

4 months ago

Good hike because of length and elevation gain. Not a whole lot of sun so anytime you hike here make sure you have lots of water. The hike starts at Dripping Springs campground. $5.00 to park if you don't have a National Park Pass.

This was a great hike - very beautiful and very challenging -but we could not actually do the loop due to multiple fallen trees and a gigantic bee hive in one of the trees. Luckily we could cover enough ground back tracking and taking the other side of the loop. We could not make it all the way though that half either due to the trail not being maintained. All in all we got in plenty of miles but would have been nice to do the loop or at least finish one complete side.

4 months ago

My low rating is simply to draw attention to the fact that the trail is currently impassable due to being seriously overgrown. Travelling counter-clockwise, you're pretty much blocked about 1 mile past the end of the dripping springs trail.

The other thing to watch out for is that camp/tent sites are very limited (at least this weekend - May 28 after a rainy winter) because the foliage is super dense and the terrain is very steep. There's only 1 small site near the area where the trail becomes blocked, so be ready for an uneven tent site and possibly company since the only options are the 1 site or hike down the way you came.

The dripping springs trail section was nice. Great view the entire time. I'm sure the rest of the loop could be a lot of fun when it's passable. Just be sure to check conditions first.