Cowles Mountain from Barker Way

MODERATE 94 reviews

Cowles Mountain from Barker Way is a 2.4 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near San Diego, California that offers scenic views and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

2.4 miles
692 feet
Out & Back

dogs on leash

kid friendly



mountain biking

trail running




12 days ago

Back side to Cowles Mountain. It’s good.

15 days ago

love this route

16 days ago

Love it, my normal hike as I can walk it from my house.

1 month ago

Love it.

2 months ago

Great views from the top, but very crowded and rocky.

2 months ago

my favorite everyday trail till now. plus it's close.

4 months ago

Ha y traffic and step climb. Dry no trees or shade. A great one for your daily cardio.

6 months ago

Less traffic, smoother surface to walk on, however it is steeper than the front. I like this route better than the front of Cowles for sure. Seemed a lot faster and more spacious

6 months ago

Less traffic than western side of Cowles Mountain. Close to home, fun and good workout.

7 months ago

Great hike

7 months ago

We did a 3 mile loop up the service road from the Barker Trailhead and then down Barker Way. Pretty ideal weather for mid-June but a bit windy. Heading up was pretty steep but there were a lot of great areas to rest and enjoy the view. The way down was a lot more scenic, we spent a little time on the main more heavily trafficked trail before turning onto Barker Way. The way back down was really scenic and more enjoyable than the service road we took up. I would go so far as to recommend going via Barker Way both to the summit and back.

7 months ago

I really like this route, alotttttttt less people it does meet up with the heavily trafficked trail but not for too long, this was 3 miles even though it says 2.4. Lies. We went up the barker way and then came down the service road, which is verrrrrry steep but there were some shirtless guys running up the hill (hubba hubba) so the views were pretty nice at the top and bottom of the mountain. I would definitely recommend hiking boots or all terrain shoes, your cute AF cross training nikes won't cut it and you will slide down the trails and fall on your ass multiple times. Trust me, I made this mistake the first time. Luckily everyone will laugh and check to make sure you're okay. If you like that kind of attention and bruising your bum do what you wanna.

9 months ago

recommended route to cowles

9 months ago

Not heavily trafficked and definitely a nice different view going up Cowles Summit. For those easily scared of heights, there are some parts of the trail that are open and narrow but nothing too crazy. Nice and quiet hike with pretty nice view on the way up.

9 months ago

11 months ago

Beautiful Views, Pretty Fragrant Flowers, Less Crowded than Main Trail, Heard Some Bees Beware

Friday, November 25, 2016

This is my preferred trail on cowles. very nice views and not as crowded.

Monday, November 21, 2016

Not crowded. Not as steep as there are more switchbacks.

Saturday, October 08, 2016

Another way up Cowles. Less crowded.

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Great first time up Cowles. Went for sunrise and got great treat. We were above the low clouds for a surreal view.

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