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

Pretty nice, very easy. Keep an eye out for the rattlers

awesome trail front side I good start then move to side service road and then for extra distance use big rock,, I come here at least twice a week for cardio workout

Great trail, was packed by 9am. Ground was like stepping on marbles and feet went out from under me. Beautiful view all the way up

hiking
5 days ago

I hike the service road 4-5 times a week. Great hike and I love it. Amazed how much trash is left behind and people with dogs off leash. Just posted a picture of a rattlesnake I saw last week. Please leash your dog so they don’t get bitten and I better not catch anyone leaving trash.

on Balboa Park Trails

walking
5 days ago

fun trail run, gets pretty steep on the climb up at a couple points but will definitely go back

Surprisingly scenic! Plus we got to hike alongside a river for awhile which was pretty awesome. Solid elevation changes, I wore my toddler in a carrier on the uphill and we admired tons of wildflowers. Really enjoyable little hike.

Did this hike yesterday. Great challenge. Beautiful views. Had a blast!

Great late evening hike!

Very hot! Would be best early am hours. However it was a very nice work out.

hiking
15 days ago

A very relaxing hike. The 5 mile distance will give you a nice exercise.

a nice, easy hike. good for a trail run, for sure and very pretty.

hiking
20 days ago

I used the directions from the app and found a sign in the parking lot with a map. I wanted to do trail #12 and tried to follow the directions to the trail. I walked around the park for an hour before finding what might have been the trail but it was so secluded I didn’t feel safe going on it alone so I turned around and went to my usual walk in Encinitas. The park itself is nice with very nice tennis courts and several areas to relax and have a picnic. I just really wish there were better signs to show you where you are and where you’re headed.

A little challenging due to the amount of people but great. Please keep your pups on a leash, especially the smaller ones. People do run up and down. Once you reach the top know there are other trails that branch off. Take water!

trail running
21 days ago

This is my favorite way to access the Cowles summit. Not nearly so busy as the main route up, and easy access from my neighborhood. It’s a nice run and a good workout.

We started at the Sorrento Valley Rd Parking lot, crossed over to the North Trail at the Wagon Wheel Crossing and stayed on the North Trail until the Carson's Crossing when we returned back on the South Trail. The waterfall wasn't much of a waterfall due to lack of rain recently, but the area was still pretty. There is a lot of wildlife to see - all kinds of birds (even saw some hummingbirds in the trees at Carson's Crossing), lizards, butterflies, dragonflies, and scat from a bunch of different animals that reside in the Preserve. There is some shade, but not much so be sure to bring lots of water, a hat, sunscreen, and clothing to shield you from the sun. It is an easy hike with minimal inclines. The trail is a mix of loose sand, packed sand, hard dirt, loose rocks. There are a lot of unmarked trails connecting to the main trails so make sure to bring a map to keep track of where you are. The bathroom at the parking area is a single portable toilet. Signs at the trailhead indicate the area has ticks, but the paths are quite wide in most places and easy to stay on the trail - doesn't hurt to use bug spray just in case. We went midday on a weekday and only saw a few other people (some on bikes and some walking) - however, I can see how this can be a busy trail during peak times.

hiking
23 days ago

Nice if you hike early morning

Long but easy, good for a run

hiking
24 days ago

This hike is easily one of my favorites!!! It’s challenging enough to get your heart pumping & there is such an incredibly beautiful view from the top!! I love the two panoramic photo boards that point out many of the noteworthy sights you can see from the summit!

Some very modest hills, but otherwise a flat walk (or run) up Penesquitos Canyon. A small waterfall at the mid point provides some scrambling opportunities as well as a place to cool your feet. A fairly easy hike, but little to no breeze in the canyon, so not a good option on hot days.

Great conditioning hike but primarily easy on the knees and interesting location with river bed on one side and up the hill are buildings .... fun surprises !

The heat was a little tough but nothing too bad.

It's beautiful

Love this trail

mountain biking
1 month ago

Awesome mountain bike trail with a few different routes. Very Technical Tracks from Moderate to Hard AF. Definitely Recommended for Mountain Biking

Good hike, great views from the summit. Quite a few rabbits, and LOTS of hummingbirds!

mountain biking
1 month ago

Badass sweeping burms to ride and tons of different trails. Will be going back for sure!! Lots of dirt jumps. Not for hiking!!

Great for a morning workout and enjoying the views.

we took the north trail on the way up and came down the South, highly recommend taking the South trail. Happy Trails

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