Cuyamaca Peak Loop

HARD 125 reviews

Cuyamaca Peak Loop is a 6.3 mile lightly trafficked loop trail located near Descanso, California that features a river and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from May until October.

6.3 miles 1489 feet Loop

birding

hiking

nature trips

trail running

walking

forest

river

views

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

snow

no dogs

Lightly traveled and rugged ridgeback with splendid pine forest views to the west. This excursion to the top of the Cuyamaca Peek has many trails from which to choose. Ours trail begins on the south Azalea Glen Loop. This 1.5 mile ascent is one of the most beautiful dense forest hikes in the park. We took the Loop Trail to the Azalea Glen Road to the Azalea Fire Road finally meeting up with the Conejos Trail. The Conejos, a lightly hiked 2.5 mile trail, follows the ridgeback of the Cuyamaca it is a bit of smorgasbord. It begins by meandering around fallen oak trees then quickly morphs to a granite rock trail. Finally it becomes a wall trail hugging a steep drop! The views this hike affords are fantastic, both to the East Mountains and west low lying valleys. Finally, the trail merges with the paved fire road 0.5 from the top of Cuyamaca Peak. Be sure to bring some binoculars, on a clear day the views from the second highest peak in San Diego County are spectacular!

hiking
1 day ago

Gorgeous trail after the rains! So green and lush. Take the loop to the right at start for sure, steady rocky climb, with breathtaking views! Add the Peak .5 at top for amazing westward view! Easy to cruise down on the paved trail side. Only bad thing was lots of gnats!

2 days ago

12 days ago

Decent trek with a fair bit of variety for Southern California hiking. By that I mean there were some good long rang views as expected, but also some forest, some meadows and a stream with plenty of vegetation along it. The hike up was mostly a paved path so it didn't seem as "natural" as some hikes, but it still was a bit of a workout.

hiking
14 days ago

23 days ago

Awesome view from the top. Unfortunately, it's a paved road and not much trail. Steady incline all the way up. Not much to see except on the final destination. Would recommend!!!!

29 days ago

1 month ago

The trail was mystifying. Once you get to some of the fire lane roads it can be a bit confusing so I do suggest getting a map from the rangers. Beautiful brooks to enjoy and stick your feet in and benches to sit. If you want some solitude it's definitely possible. The view from the peak is amazing. Be mindful of wildlife.

It's not the hardest trail I've done but it's not easy.

if you dont want to do the whole loop, you can park in the campground and just do the peak hike which is much shorter.

hiking
1 month ago

1 month ago

Great hike! We saw about 20 wild turkey and 9 deer. It's listed as hard but we thought Iron Mountain was harder and it's listed as Moderate.

1 month ago

1 month ago

1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

Make sure you climb on a day that is at least partially sunny so you can get the chance to see the coastline from the top!

hiking
1 month ago

2 months ago

3 months ago

Great Hike!! I love the variety of trails and the steep inclines really gives you the cardiovascular workout you desire. I highly recommend this hike.

hiking
3 months ago

Loved this hike. Went 2 days after rainfall and it was great having some greenery and a little moisture everywhere. It was fairly easy in the beginning 30% of the trail then became more difficult from there on. The trail was rocky and seemed to have a stream going through the trail which made it that much more fun. The peak was beautiful as was expected. We took the paved road down and we are extremely glad we didn't take it up because there isn't much to see. We started at Azalea Glen, then Azalea Springs, then Conejos and busted a right on the paved road when it met up with us to the top. Was really a special hike. Highly recommend. Another good part about this hike was actually the drive up to the trail. You pass through a little town called Julian which could be a whole separate review all in itself. Pretty fun day! We totaled about 9.0 miles up and back including a few off trail ventures.

3 months ago