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Old Dam South Fortuna Kwaay Paay Summit Loop Trail

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Mission Trails Regional Park

Old Dam South Fortuna Kwaay Paay Summit Loop Trail is a 6.4 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near San Diego, California that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking, running, nature trips, and bird watching and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 6.4 miles Elevation Gain: 1,243 feet Route Type: Loop

dogs on leash


nature trips

bird watching



wild flowers



Please note: the trail between Kaway Paay Peak and the Visitor Center is currently closed.

no shade
4 months ago

do the trail clockwise for more rewarding views during the second half

Very fun loop trail if you are staying at the lake kumeyaay campground. Bring plenty of water my girlfriend and I combined had 1x 2L bladder 1x 3L bladder 1x 32oz nalgene 1x 48oz nalgene. Bring boots for ease and comfort. We stopped for a 15 minute lunch break.

Great hike! Absolutely loved it. Took about 3-4 hours to compete at a slow pace (taking photos, snack breaks, etc) difficult but definitely manageable if you don’t mind incline. Would recommend. Also be sure to check out the 5 Peak Challenge that MTRP offers

High traffic on Saturday

11 months ago

the best

no shade
Sun Jun 16 2019

Took this trail starting from the visitor center and then up the hill from there. There is away to void the large hill by taking the trails just to the east of it on the map. There’s hardly any shade once leaving the river area and it gets extremely warm. When going up or down steep grades the dirt paths have a little give so be careful in these areas. Any one hiking with dogs during the summer should be very careful of ground temperatures in this area as they can be significantly hotter then the air temperature.

Mon Apr 22 2019

So much fun. A little difficult and really steep in some spots; but a great challenge nonetheless. Climbing a mountain, following the river and discovering waterfalls, walking through wildflowers...this trail is never boring.

Sat Mar 23 2019

Amazing views, great gradual incline. Easily a favorite at the park. I hiked in the early morning when it was cool and cloudy, so I didn't need much water. if hiking midday, make sure to bring plenty of water. it is well worth it though!

Sat Mar 23 2019

Best time of year to come out here! It's beautiful after all the rain!

Tue Feb 05 2019

Fun trail to hike with entire family. The straight incline is boring but a fast way to the top. Not much shade one you reach the top of the incline. Awesome views from the summit of North Fortuna. After following the creek you hang a left at the fork going up. once on top turn right then right again to north fortuna. Easy first half. once you start the north fortuna summit it gets rocky. overall enjoyed this hike.

Mon Nov 12 2018

I thoroughly enjoyed this hike. I didn’t realize any challenge because I was far too busy enjoying the beautiful views, streams and weather. It was very quiet and provided an amazing peaceful hike I would definitely recommend this trail .

Thu Sep 27 2018

Starts out easy but it’s definitely a challenge towards the top. Great variety of difficulty, nice variety of scenery and some nice shaded areas.

Sun Sep 09 2018

This actually was 7.95 miles be prepared was rough.

Wed Apr 04 2018

Nice damn and oh damn! My legs hurt.

Wed Nov 08 2017

Tough to begin and gets easier!

Sat Jul 15 2017

General area is awesome for variety and scenery; however, the trail between Kaway Paay Peak and the Visitor Center is closed. Still recommend this route just use Father Junipero Serra Trail for the mentioned closed section.

Sat Jul 01 2017

Definitely enjoyed the challenge of this trail. Coming down off Fortuna is probably the most trying part because of the rocks, there is also a steep incline when you first start on the South Fortuna trail. There is a series of trails in this area so just keep the all trails app going and you'll navigate just fine. Gorgeous trail, I enjoyed the changing of terrains!

Sun Jun 11 2017

Kwaay Peak is really fun but I could not find the trail down. I ended up going back down Kwaay Peak and ran south Fortuna to the stairs. 7 miles ended up being 10.5.

Mon May 15 2017

Straight up hill with some nice scenery. Walked in from the initial driveway before the guest/visitor center which made the round trip a bit under six miles at 5.6 miles. The iPhone tracker said we hit 67 flights of stairs. The dam before hand is a fun little explore around. My cattle dog is worn out so bring plenty of water if you're with your pup. If he's toast it's a tough go. Happy hiking!

Mon Jan 09 2017

love it!

Wed Jan 04 2017

Great trail. Kids and puppy loved exploring here

Sun Dec 11 2016

Loved it! Brought our pup and had a wonderful time!

Sun May 08 2016

Pros: - Hardly anyone else on the trail. A few people at the entrance but then only saw 2-3 other groups on this hike. - lots of fun bridges and water breaks along the way - bouldering along the dam - many trail options to extend the hike and make it a bit more challenging Cons: - Close to freeway - The smell at the entrance

Mon Apr 18 2016

It was hot out, would definitely suggest going earlier in the morning before it heats up, but there's lots of scenery here!

5 days ago

11 days ago

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