Explore the most popular trails near Anza with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Anza, California Map

Trail start point is 100 yds further down road than maps say. Where it tells you to park isn’t actual trailhead despite a primitive trail being there. Drive to point where another road joins that only goes 20 feet to the right.

3 months ago

05/26/2018, enjoyed the hike on a very cold day! After 4.9 miles of off-road to get to the Trailhead, you start on the north side of the PCT. Ducks are positioned to make it up the slippery Bucksnort Mt to Combs Peak! Thrilled to sign the Peak Log and locate all 3 Geological Benchmarks! Rallied up 6.02 RT miles and 1,666 ft. elevation gains. Lastly, met a few first PCT hikers to attempt the entire journey!

Lots of people, mainly PCT hikers (obviously!). Good views and easy ascent. Overall nice hike but watch for ticks! My wife swatted one off her pants and my daughter had one in her hair! Horror! Didn’t see any bites and we are remaining hopeful that we dodged the worst.

great views 70% of the trail.
areas of scrub oak, to meadows, then pine trees.
awesome views at the top.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Wasn't sure we were going the right way at first as you have to drive almost 5 miles on a bumpy dirt road. You will find the PCT marker and space to park. The views are spectacular and made it well worth the trek. Very hot so make sure there is plenty of water.

Wednesday, July 05, 2017

A quick hike with amazing views. Getting to the trailhead involves driving down a dirt road. 4x4 isn't necessary. It's fairly well graded and only a couple areas are wash boarded. If you want solitude this is the place.

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Nice trail! But the branch off of the PCT to the top of the hill doesn't exist. You could bushwack it but it'd be a pain.

But this section of the PCT is beautiful! Well worth it!

Sunday, April 09, 2017

We did this as a short backpacking trip with children in preparation for our summer hike in Yosemite. It is a relatively easy hike as a two day backpacking trip but the views are rewarding.
I would agree with the previous poster that the dirt road to the trailhead is difficult to drive on. We had a 4x4 and even then we worried that we would not make it through the ruts.
There are only a few established campsites and not that many options as the terrain is not very flat and the vegetation is very thick at the top. Having said that, we were the only people on the mountain and the view from our site, just past the peak were spectacular.
We filtered and boiled enough water for our meals from the spring (marked with an actual spring) but even after all this rain we had recently (April 2017) the runoff was not more than a trickle. I would advise to carry enough water for your needs and not to rely on this spring.
We saw a solitary doe on our approach to the summit and a couple of velvet ants. I understand these can produce very painful stings.

Tuesday, April 04, 2017

If you are into beautiful vistas and caches of notes at the summit of other people who have climbed than this is the hike for you. It was gorgeous when we went, and there were a lot of flowers in bloom. There was a lot of change of scenery and it was a great experience to hike from one side of a mountain to the other. A couple of notes:
- Bring more water than you think. It is sunny and dry.
- When you get to the other side of the mountain and think, "wait, why am I going downhill?," don't worry, you will go back up again in a just a bit. There will be two uphill pushes right before the summit.
- You will know the summit when you reach a pile of rocks and an army box full of notes.
- We did not have a high clearance vehicle so had to park at the start of the dirt road. PREPARE YOURSELF, this adds two miles on each way. So your hike will go from 6 miles to 10. You will add on a significant amount of elevation as well.
- If you do not have a truck/jeep/SUV, etc and think maybe I will try going up the road, DON'T. There are huge patches of sand, areas of road washed out so badly that there is barely room to drive, and dips that will take out the underbelly of your car. Maybe in the future this will be filled in, but it was bad at the time we went.

All and all a lovely hike though, and we felt rather accomplished after. If I had an SUV I would do it again in a heartbeat.

Sunday, March 19, 2017

This hike started out on the PCT which while easy has beautiful views. There never was a real trail off the PCT to get to lookout mountain. My kids scrambled up what appeared to be a path but it wasn't. We have scrambled up other mountains before and enjoyed the challenge and views. This hike up to the lookout offered no better view than from the PCT trail. Instead I would recommend continuing on the PCT because around every corner is another breathtaking view.

Monday, January 30, 2017

Very beautiful surroundings. I wish we followed the directions to the T as we walked most of the dirt road toward the trail head. The road was washed out so we decided to walk which cut our hike short of the trail. That said, it is a beautiful location.

Saturday, November 26, 2016

Awesome hike.
Tip: The trailhead is up a dirtroad that is extremely bumpy. Definitely use an SUV or a truck if at all possible. at first the directions will seem to be taking you on a trail, but they are perfect. Follow them verbatim.
The hike was perfect for both my dog and I. It took us about 3 hours because I couldn't stop taking pictures of the beautiful scenery. There are countless incredible views since it starts at a high elevation and continues to go higher. For the many people who have never been around the Anza area, check it out! You will not be disappointed.

Thursday, October 27, 2016

I hiked this with my brother it was really nice and easy but beautiful and interesting we actually went about 5 miles in so 10 miles round trip. we would do it again!

Friday, October 14, 2016

thru hiked the PCT 2016

Monday, May 23, 2016

Very enjoyable hike that should be rated hard by alltrails "standards". The first 1.7ish miles is PCT. You'll see a small rock pile to your left on a winding section of the PCT at that distance which marks the trail up to the summit. I'm pretty sure the elevation gain was only about 1150 ft. Almost all of the elevation gain is in the last half mile. It is very steep and very slippery. Bring poles if you got 'em. Views are worth it!

Monday, April 04, 2016

Started hiking this trail as a kid. First run in 18 years today. Still sad that it burnt down, but nice to see it recovering.

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

This was a very enjoyable hike! I went south from the hwy 74 parking lot to table top mountain. It was not a strenuous hike, the biggest workout being from mile 148 up the hill on the way back northbound. That portion is relatively short though so shouldn't present a problem. There are great views southbound after you round lookout mountain shortly after starting the hike (approx 1km into the hike).

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Many PCTers know this already but if you are coming off of the south trail, the "continuing" trail to the north has been closed. There are signs at the head of the trail saying 10-12 miles in its closed off due to a fire. Since most folks hiking the pct are going down the road (left out of the south trail) to the dinner about a half a mile they will find out the new entrance to the north trail is about 3-4 miles down the road. Just a heads up for anyone trying to hike this section of the PCT. Happy hiking!

Thursday, March 13, 2014

This trail was beautiful, though I have my suspicions that it is because of all the rain recently. If you plan on going it's really nice early spring late winter. There was a creek that we passed several times and one camp site. I brought my dogs though and one of them ended up getting raw paw pads from the ground so just beware if you bring your dog.

When it comes to where to park there is a nice big gravel lot on the left side of the road if your coming from Julien area. And the trail is across the street behind a fence. Disregard fence/sign and walk around the fence, it will give you a clear trail to the PCT.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

This is a very nice, very uncrowded hike, with excellent views. There are two reasons I gave 4 instead of 5 stars. The first is that the road leading to the trailhead (Lost Valley Road) isn't paved, and unless you have a 4x4, it's not a lot of fun driving. [Note: This shouldn't dissuade anyone from driving here, we did just fine in a Volkswagen, but I wouldn't try something with a very low clearance.] The second is that while the Pacific Coast Trail (PCT) part of the hike is in excellent shape and well-maintained, the "climber's trail" up to Combs Peak is a bit hard to find and a bit hard to follow. We passed the turnoff while walking the PCT, and had to back-track a bit. I didn't measure exactly where the turn-off is, but it's definitely between 1.75 and 2.00 miles from the trailhead, with 1.85 being my best guess. It's marked by a rock formation ("duck"), which leads to the climber's trail that zig-zags up the mountain. We were able to follow the ducks all the way up the mountain without any problems - there were a ton of ducks. Coming down, we lost the trail (it's harder to see going downhill than up because of the vegetation), but it wasn't a huge deal because we could see the PCT the whole time and just angled our descent towards the PCT. Walking up the footing was fine, but coming down there were a couple places where I wish the footing would have been better, as there are many smallish rocks that move around under your feet. All of this was well worth it, however, as the view from the top was spectacular, with views in all directions. Hot Springs Mountain and Lake Henshaw were easily viewable to the South, and many mountains including Mt San Jacinto were right there to the North. I thought the view from Combs Peak was better than that of Hot Springs Mountain, as it has less impediments. Also, assuming you don't get lost, the hike is fairly short (5 miles roundtrip, with just about 4 on the PCT), and very uncrowded (we saw nobody on the trail).

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

After a 2 mile climb up a dirt road (I reccomend an suv but 4wd isn't necessary) there is a spot to park and start on the trailhead. Despite being just miles from neighborhoods, it is silent here. Although steep, the hike up is enjoyable, with many great views. The trail leads through many different ecosystems. There are several great spots to set up camp at the top.

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