Looking for a great trail in Santa Ysabel Preserve, California? AllTrails has 5 great hiking trails, trail running trails, dogs leash trails and more, with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers, and nature lovers like you. Ready for some activity? There are 4 moderate trails in Santa Ysabel Preserve ranging from 4.2 to 9.1 miles and from 2,933 to 4,284 feet above sea level. Start checking them out and you'll be out on the trail in no time!



dogs on leash



Hours: 8 a.m. - sunset

13 days ago

Got a little lost. No fault of the mapping. Scenery was so gorgeous we just wandered off the trail. No complaints however. We will be back again for this one and pay more attention. Trail was well marked. Beautiful scenery and wildlife. Saw scar from several different animals to include a big cat... so they are out and about. Great time!

This is an amazing hill trainer hike! Steady rolling hills that vary in difficulty. This one definitely offers a workout and beautiful view to look at along the way. The trailhead is clearly marked and the trail is taken care of. Keep an eye out for the maleficent tree!

Fantastic trail and in great condition. Beautiful area.

Pretty nice. Only better if it had a peak and the trails where less fire roady. Good for running if that’s your thing.

no shade
1 month ago

no shade
1 month ago

On the 14th of September 2019 with Pierce. Hottest day of the week with a high of 92 degrees, but the breeze helped so much. This hike was beautiful and the Upper Creek was actually running still. We will definitely be back. I can’t imagine how it looks in the spring when everything is green and blooming. There are wild cows along the trail as well. We didn’t approach them too close, but took pictures and they seemed very friendly. A few of them did stand up when we came by to say hello :) Lots of squirrels, grasshoppers, bees, lizards, and birds. We even got to see the Golden Eagles. Trail is maintained well and would be good for mountain biking. Definitely a challenge and constant workout with the steep hills up and down.

1 month ago

This is very peaceful for sure. Very few bugs. Views are nice but I enjoy the other side of trail better.

Don't do this one in the heat! The cows were fun to watch. The Trail isn't all that hard if it was cooler weather.

Very nice hike. Ran into two people on horses, but other than that, it was my wife, myself and a bunch of cows ... and on a Sunday afternoon! We've driven past the trailhead for years, but have never hiked it. Well, today was the day. With it being on our to-do list and it being part of the crest to coast 2019 challenge, how could we not go. Beautiful, rolling hills with a sprinkle of oaks throughout. The hills were respectably steep and still do-able. Nice views throughout. Temperature was in the low 80's, so not too hot. Bring water and don't count on the stream - while we were hiking, numerous cows were hanging out in the stream, presumably doing what cows do from time to time in the stream. I usually grade hikes pretty tough, reserving 5 stars for national park level trails, so giving this hike a 5 star review says a lot for this stingy grader.

Absolutely stunning views and only shared the trail with some cows. The trail is well maintained, with some steep inclines and a creek crossing. There are a handful of picnic benches along the trail if you wanted to pack a lunch or snack and enjoy the serenity of the area. The parking/staging area at the trailhead is gated and according to the posted sign doesn’t open until 8am and closes at sunset but I arrived at about 6:45 and a ranger just pulled up to unlock the gates but I wouldn’t count on them being opened early everyday. There are trash cans and portapotties at the trailhead as well.

If you’re going to hike this in the summer, BRING WATER! Currently there is a steam flowing about halfway through the hike that you can refill with if need be. But, July 28th at noon with 93 degree heat, no clouds and shade trees few and far between...it was a little too brutal for me. That being said nice views at the end and the flower field at the start makes for a nice insta post if you so choose! Coast To Crest 2019-2020!!!!!!!

Love this place!

Great hike with great inclines all the way to the top. The trail does a big loop and you can continue on for crest to crest Trail and extend your hike longer. There are areas without shade but most of it is shaded. Right now there are too many bugs bring lots of bug spray. And you can enjoy a drink at the top and enjoy the view. These mountains remind me of Santa Ynez and Solvang in Santa Barbara. The cows are amazing.

Just say moo and the cows are chill

Well groomed wide trail with good footing. Two picnic benches, one located as the trail crosses over the creek and the other under an oak tree at the back of the loop. Bring plenty of water if you plan on hiking during the summer.

Great hike! Starts flat then you can keep going to get a great incline and great views. Lots to of cows roaming. Found one picnic bench up there under the shade!

Absolutely beautiful hike, we did 7.2 miles highly recommend to do this before June! heats up, there was plenty of shade, a nice stream picnic tables, lots of cattle. Always take plenty of water and all the emergency essentials.

4 months ago

1st time going and instantly became a must do again. So much pretty country out in Santa Ysabel.

Doubled this hike. Very pretty nice hike.

Trying out the new baby Carrier. Actually went 2 miles. Will come back to do the rest.

Cutest hike ever

So beautiful!! Don’t worry the cows are used to people! There are picnic tables on the hike , great for stopping for a snack . We did 6.9 miles , it had a few hills which made it great. It’s so green and gorgeous, you forget your in Southern California .

great hike! saw 7 other hikers. lots of cows! the protective mama cows will not approach, but will stare you down until you're out of sight. I also felt bad because I scared one of the baby cows while crossing the stream. I had to make a jump across and the poor little thing was on the other side and freaked out. the uphill coming back was a nice challenge too!

Beautiful green tall grasses and some feisty cows blocking the trail! Had to maneuver off trail around the cows. Great hike!

Very Green. Saw a pack of coyotes , two snakes and a lot of cows and their calves . Beautiful open area with old oak trees. Start early as it does get warm. Crossed a stream and started another incline. A few picnic spots along the way.

Recommended! Very little shade but a beautiful, lightly used trail.

A pleasant easy hike. We did it from Farmer Rd to 79, mostly downhill. We saw cows, turkeys, wildflowers, poison oaks... I thought crossing the headwaters of San Diego River was neat.

Beautiful! Right now everything is green, and there are lots wild flowers (not the Anza-Borrego superbloom kind, but still very pretty!). Part of the trail is pretty flat, but it does get a bit hilly if you follow the entire loop. One thing I noticed is how clean the trail is. Unlike parts of the San Diego area Pacific Crest Trail, there was no trash or bags of dog poop lying along the side of the trail. I hope it stays that way! It was a perfect day for hiking, but I only saw a few other people along the loop. I highly recommend this hike!

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