Edit ModuleShow Tags

6 Scenic Hikes Perfect for Enjoying San Diego’s Great Outdoors

Here’s where to celebrate National Trails Day on June 3


Published:

Santa Margarita River Trail

Santa Margarita River Trail

This wooded path takes you through green grass and along a picturesque river. Stop and dip your feet in the river if you get too hot.

Start here: Sandia Creek Drive and Rock Mountain Drive
Length: 6 miles for the loop
Level: Easy

 

North Fortuna Peak

This trip takes you to a lesser-known part of Mission Trails Regional Park than the well-traversed Cowles Mountain. It’s also a part of the newly launched Five-Peak Challenge. Hike the park’s quintet of peaks over 1,000 feet and snap a selfie at the top of each for an official certificate and pin.

Start here: SR-52 and Mast Boulevard
Length: 5.4 miles
Level: Moderate

 

Lake Miramar

This path is flat, car-free, and follows a perfect 5-mile loop that hugs the lake the entire way. As you cross the dam on the western side of the lake, you’re treated to a picturesque view of La Jolla.

Start here: Scripps Lake Drive at the Miramar Water Treatment Plant
Length: 4.9 miles
Level: Moderate

 

Upper Otay Reservoir

This relatively hidden loop has beautiful views of the upper and lower Otay lakes. Early on the trail, you’ll pass the upper reservoir dam, which has been covered with graffiti. It makes for a startling sight in the middle of natural open space. You can extend your run and feel like an Olympian by taking Wueste Road to Olympic Parkway.

Start here: Otay Lakes Road about a half mile east of Wueste Road
Length: 2.2 miles for the loop
Level: Moderate

 

Annie's Canyon Trail

This trail used to be covered with graffiti, but was recently reopened after a grant-funded restoration. Following it means climbing through narrow rock passages and a chance to detour into a cave. After tracing the route, you can continue along the Solana Hills trail if you want a longer hike or run.

Start here: North Rios Avenue and Solana Point Circle
Length: 0.25 miles for the loop
Level: Easy

 

El Capitan Trail

The trail up one of San Diego County’s highest points is rigorous but has unbeatable views. Go soon to take advantage of the cooler weather—you’ll still work up a sweat. In winter months, the parking lot closes at 4:30 p.m., so be sure to arrive early enough to have time for the four- to six-hour hike.

Start here: Wildcat Canyon Road and Shenma Road
Length: 11.2 miles
Level: Difficult

 

For even more trails, click here.

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

More »Related Stories

Your Guide to the 2019 Holiday Season in San Diego

‘Tis the season to take in twinkling lights, toast with wintry cocktails, and tuck into your favorite holiday treats.

Pop-Up Dinner Inside Life-Size Terrarium Heading to San Diego

Plus South Park is getting a new nonprofit restaurant, Moto Deli reopens, and more San Diego restaurant news

Trail of the Month: Bernardo Mountain Summit Trail

The challenging North County trek is worth it for the views at the top
Edit Module

Subscribe to the Blog

 
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Sponsored

’Tis the Season for San Diego Fun

Here's where to play and stay this winter in America’s Finest City

We Chat with the Crew behind Hornblower Cruises and Events Aboard the High Spirits Ship

Sponsored by Hornblower
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Most Popular

  1. The Problem With Bright Red Tuna
    Many Americans still think bright red tuna means it’s fresher (it’s not)
  2. First Look: Animae
    Puffer Malarkey Restaurants unveil 5.5 million-dollar pan-Asian concept
  3. The Hunt For San Diego's Best Chicken Wings
    How wings became the No. 1 kickoff food in the U.S., and our hunt for the best
  4. Jason Mraz and his Historic Coffee Bean
    The singer and Bird Rock Coffee Roasters unveil the first California-grown Geisha coffee
  5. How San Diego Are You?
    Take our quiz to see where you land on the newcomer to old-timer spectrum
  6. The SoCal (Social Calendar!)
    From black-tie galas to costumed 5Ks, these events will keep your social calendar full—and you feeling good
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module