Kwaay Paay Peak Trail

HARD 592 reviews

Kwaay Paay Peak Trail is a 2.3 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Santee, California that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as difficult. 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.

DISTANCE
2.3 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
875 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

kid friendly

camping

hiking

mountain biking

nature trips

trail running

walking

bird watching

views

wild flowers

rocky

hiking
rocky
5 days ago

Hard trail, straight up the whole time. Not crowded due to difficulty. Outstanding view at the end.

hiking
12 days ago

Short and sweet. A little steep in some areas, but well maintained and a nice view at the end.

hiking
14 days ago

This trail isn’t too hard. Nice outing hike, but the view isn’t the greatest thing in the world. Dog friendly, don’t need to be very experienced.

18 days ago

I hike often so I would consider this an easy hike that gets your heart pumping. The trail is easy to follow and is not very crowded.

hiking
21 days ago

This is a really good hike, just bring hiking shoes. There is a lot of loose gravel on this trail, the steep climb at the end is the best part. As you crest the top of the mountain the views of the trails around are fantastic.

21 days ago

Of the 5 Santee summits, this is by far the hardest to reach the top. Its steep. There tends to be less hikers on this trail which is awesome if your goal is to get away from the frontcountry noise for a little while. I gave it four stars because it makes you work despite its relatively short distance and the general lack of hikers. You will pass or be passed here and there but nothing like Cowles or most of the trails in San Diego. Its worth atleast one trip to the top.

hiking
22 days ago

Great Hike, short but with plenty of uphill stairs to climb and get a good workout. bonus: not real busy unlike some of the other local hikes.

hiking
no shade
rocky
26 days ago

The view is absolutely amazing! Tough trail, although I hike often- I consider myself a newbie... good burn, steep, totally worth the view- becareful coming down the trail has lots of loose rocks, WEAR shoes with good traction, and take water!

hiking
rocky
29 days ago

hiking
rocky
1 month ago

Not that hard but a little slippery in places. Great views.

trail running
1 month ago

Great heart pumper to get your day going. Up and down in 38 minutes jogging/hiking. Trail running shoes help a lot with the rocky terrain. Dogs loved it! Only met 3 other people on a Friday morning. Pretty good for Mission trails which is always busy.

hiking
1 month ago

This trail was so steep! It was very hard, but the climb was worth the view!

hiking
1 month ago

Love this short yet Steep hike. Beautiful views.

1 month ago

1st time hiking Kwaay Paay. Intense quick hike. Very steep. I surely had fun. Loved the stairs. I'll definitely do this more often. I usually hike Cowles mtn... love it, but it's always crowded unlike Kwaay. Saw only 7 people during my afternoon hike.

hiking
1 month ago

great quick intense hike. part of the trails are narrow so be aware if you have your pup with you.

hiking
1 month ago

Great short climb hike up, 1.2 miles, and fun trail run down. Did this hike after hiking Cowles Mtn. Not too many people during week midday.

hiking
1 month ago

Great to do in the rain. Good views of downtown and the surrounding mission trails at the top.

hiking
1 month ago

A nice steep short hike!

1 month ago

Lots of steps to get up this peak. Coming down is certainly hard on the knees - no switchbacks. Unfortunately it was too smoggy to enjoy the view. Picked up a little trash, not much tho!

hiking
1 month ago

Easy trail - surely steep. A nice, short hike on this beautiful Christmas Eve morning!

2 months ago

Please tell me, how to get there! We went there and ended in the Old Dam. It was still a great hike/walk, but I want to hike the Kwaay Paay. Thank you.

hiking
2 months ago

Fun and short hike up a steep hill that ends in a beautiful view of downtown!

hiking
2 months ago

This trail really kicked my butt but it was a great hike. I recommend it to anyone who’s looking for a real work out that includes incline but doesn’t want to be out on the trail for five hours. The view from the top is nice, and there are a lot of boulders you can sit on. It would be nice to go back and do a little picnic up there at the top. The best part about this trail is there are so many others right next to it so I did two others and overall had a great day. My advice would be to wear shoes with good soles as there is a lot of loose sand and pebbles.

hiking
2 months ago

Good workout! My steepest trail yet in SD. Hiked up with my dog for the sunset and ran (mostly) down.

2 months ago

Great view at peak for watching SAN DIEGO’s downtown sunset .

2 months ago

Great training hike for other, more rigorous hikes. The trail gives you a great aerobic workout in a relatively short span. It can easily be combined with other trails such as North and South Fortuna. When combined with several other Mission Trails Regional Park trails or when doing the Five Peak Challenge, I begin with this one because it is steep in spots and can wear you down fast. If you haven't hiked this trail in the last five years, much maintenance has been done that has improved the overall quality of the trail.

hiking
2 months ago

Short and sweet hike to the top. I have done this 3 or 4 times from either trailhead. Can be slippery after a recent rain because the trail can get steep in some spots near the top. Fun to do at night!

3 months ago

Elevation, all the way!!! it's a nice hike, went by fast, easier running down than going up, but it was great!

3 months ago

This is a pretty quick hike but it can be steep in spots which is great for me since I'm an experienced hiker. The view from the top is amazing.

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