Explore the most popular views trails in Mission Trails Regional Park with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

trail running
1 day ago

My husband and I are from Utah, but we are living in San Diego for the summer, and we were missing out mountains and trails to run, so we went out here and it was better than we thought! We did a trail run 6 mile loop with about 1,300 ft elevation. It's not quite Utah Mountains, but it was really fun, and we will be back. The trails are marked very well, and you can pick what you want to do since they are all intertwined. We summited the south fortuna peak, and took it to the fortuna saddle, and then did a couple other loops. Super fun!

on Fortuna Mountain Trail

hiking
1 day ago

Great challenging hike with gorgeous views. Bring lots of water.

Cowles is a convenient, quick hike that unfortunately is a victim of its popularity. The trail itself is great, maintained well with challenging sections and plenty of areas to catch your breath. But Cowles can be extremely busy, and SO MANY hiking it have zero trail manners, which is a huge bummer. Parking can also be a chore if you arrive during busy times.

BUT, the views are great once you get to the top. Full view of every bit of San Diego and beyond. Definitely worth it.

Great for almost everyone (except if you have bad knees...)

Great view!

can't beat the view!!!

My friend Megan lost her tan and black Kate Spade wristlet with her license in it. Please call her or mail it if you find it. Great hike! Bring lots of water.

hiking
4 days ago

My friend Megan lost her tan and black Kate Spade wristlet with her license in it. Please call her or mail it if you find it. Great hike! Bring lots of water.

hiking
5 days ago

PARKING: you can park in the visitor center lot, the side of the road that leads to the visitor center, or the side of the road within the gated entrance (not sure when the gates open but i imagine 8AM?) it was pretty crowded when i was returning from the hike (around 9AM) since there's free guided nature walks on certain days, so definitely keep that in mind. BTW - i highly recommend visiting the visitor center as they have small interesting exhibits ^_^

HIKE: the hike is pretty straight forward with some branching trails at the start but they inter-connect with the main trail. there's incline and declines but they aren't too drastic UNLESS YOU PLAN ON ROCK CLIMBING/BOULDERING!

Funny thing - i tried to boulder my way up to the top and almost fell. so be very careful and have the proper equipment when attempting. I only had climbing shoes but. But i'm also a novice LOL.

Anyway, you can choose to not boulder and just continue the hike.

It got pretty packed early in the morning so if you're looking for quiet serenity - i'd advise to come around 7AM since there were already a bunch of humans by 8AM. and since the park offers free nature walks, that just adds to the human traffic you'll need to navigate around.

overall, i'd say this was enjoyable and the scenery was very nice. i just wish i'd made it to the top but i'll need to up my climbing skills.

hiking
6 days ago

You can get solitude here even though it's next to one of the most popular hikes in SD. Lots of greenery that you feel like you're not in the neighborhood.

This trail was amazing and the view was worth the hard climb! It was the perfect weather yesterday as well!

This was super fun to do for a hike after work! It was pretty steep with stairs and such but the view was pretty nice!

Did this yesterday - even though it was overcast I managed to burn my face. Take plenty of water. In parts this is really testing - especially the stairs and by the time I’d finished it my legs felt like jelly

hiking
12 days ago

The two interesting things about this climb for me were the view of the city, and the interface of Park land with the surrounding development. I encountered a handful of mountain bikers which is fine, but one just needs to be aware they are coming pretty fast.

hiking
12 days ago

Basically a climb up to a lookout and back down. There was one spot where you have a nice look into the gorge, but other than that this is not spectacular.

Great up hill hike... amazing views

Easy and short trail with nice views at the top.

great challenge vs most trails

hiking
16 days ago

My son and I had such a blast hiking this trail! We love the Fortunas! We enjoy the incline so the stairs and saddle trail were fun for us!

Hardly see anybody from Cowles to Pyles Peak.

18 days ago

The last part is the best.

You must sign book,thats what makes this hike unique .

Must do south and north together ,since there so close to each other.

North Fortuna Peak is great however nearly all of the trails are very wide and graded with the exception of the area right at the peak. The signage is poor and every little section of Trail has a different name. We got lost multiple times. You end up having to use your phone and GPS which is not my idea of a good hike.

Great hike but very hot at 9am. Felt sorry for the kids and dogs. Great workout!

Very nice trail. I think the nicer direction is clockwise. Overall not a lot of shade so bring plenty of water. I met less than 10 other hikers on a sunny Saturday, so it‘s not crowded at all.

hiking
24 days ago

My first West Coast hike and I enjoyed it. The day was of course hot and dry which is much different than what I'm used to in the Northeast but with enough water certainly enjoyable. The view was fantastic all the way up. Wasn't too busy late morning on a weekday. Path is dusty and firm packed but no real traction issues. Just over an hour up and back. A good way to start my vacation.

great for beginners.

Quite a bit more difficult than Cowles mountain, just because it’s a steep incline the entire way. Yes it may be shorter but doesn’t feel like it haha. Still enjoyed our hike and our dog cane with us and did well.

Crowded but enjoyed it

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