“Yes, this is our New Year’s resolution,” said my husband Patrick, looking up from his book.
“Let’s hear it,” I answered, half listening as I Instagrammed.
“Climb the mountains and get their good tidings./ Nature’s peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees./ The winds will blow their own freshness into you,/ and the storms their energy, while cares will drop off like autumn leaves.”
“It’s from John Muir, and he is spot-on,” Patrick said. “Work your magic, Evie, and find some beautiful walks in San Diego. Some place where nature’s peace will flow into us as sunshine flows into trees.
9550 Milden Street, La Mesa
“Every morning we walk,” offered Lissa, “and our favorite walk is our Thursday route — through Harry Griffen Park from the Blackthorne Avenue entrance, past the dog park, and then down along one of the nature trails. Beautiful lemony smell in the air in the early mornings, hawks wheeling, sometimes a great blue heron standing in the middle of the grass. We meander the trails and then leave the park via the Poppy Street gate.”
“San Clemente Canyon, Marian Bear Memorial Park,” said Katie. “At the intersection of Genesee and the 52 freeway for parking, the walk is a rustic dirt path which goes almost all the way from the 805 to the 5 along the 52. During the winter months, the creek is running. It’s a bit of a mountain-getaway feeling if you ignore the freeway noise.”
Sunset Cliffs Boulevard at Ladara Street, Ocean Beach
“I love walking and running at Sunset Cliffs [Ocean Front Street and Sunset Boulevard] because it is a very peaceful and happy setting,” said Jeannie. “I am not a huge lover of sand, so the running trail is awesome, and the views are amazing.”
Ocean Boulevard and Marina Avenue, Coronado
“I love driving over the Coronado Bridge to walk in Coronado,” explained Kathleen. “I park in the beautiful neighborhoods a mile or so from the Hotel Del; the houses are gorgeous and of various architectural styles. I walk to Coronado Beach, where the sand is very fine.”
Lita also loves walking in Coronado. “The grounds and flower beds in front of the ocean at the Hotel Del,” she recommended. Lita also loves a stroll through Old Town, ending up at La Casa de Estudillo, an adobe house, one of the oldest examples of Spanish architecture in California as well as a free museum. “It gives one a real feeling for the days of the Spanish dons,” she added.
9040 Carlton Oaks Drive, Santee
5540 Kiowa Drive, La Mesa
“I love walking by the water,” said Julie. “Lake Murray, Santee Lakes, the lovely sounds, the pure scents, surrounded by nature. I take deep breaths and drink in the views.” (Fees for entry to Santee Lake: $3 per vehicle on weekdays; $5 per vehicle on weekends and holidays.)
Carlsbad Boulevard at Tamarack Avenue, Carlsbad
Cherie walks Carlsbad beach from Harbor Fish Café south to the end of the path. “I also enjoy the walk from San Diego Maritime Museum to Seaport Village. And walking by Lake Hodges or the trails on Black Mountain.”
Navajo Road and Golfcrest Drive, San Carlos
“Our teens like going over Cowles Mountain from Big Rock Park in Santee to the San Carlos side,” answered Peter. “Something about going up and over a mountain is exhilarating.”
Scripps Lake Drive at Scripps Ranch Boulevard, Miramar
“I love hiking around Miramar Lake,” said Mariana. “It’s a five-mile loop, so the scenery is not repetitive. The road winds and has light hills, so it keeps it interesting as opposed to a boring straight road.”
“I used to think that Balboa Park was only about the architecture and the museums,” added Mariana. “But on the northwest corner of the park, I discovered a map of all the trails around the park. Flat, nice leisurely hiking trails with different hill difficulties. I’ve been doing them for a year, and I have yet to discover all of them! Plus it’s great people-watching as well.”
4901 Mount Helix Drive, La Mesa
“I don’t take nice walks,” said Bernice, “when I want a real butt workout, and I don’t mean that in a dirty way, then I’m walking the Mount Nebo stairs in La Mesa. I call them the Endless Stairs of Moria. I go up and down twice, and it really gets my heart pumping. Or I head up to the amphitheater on the top of Mount Helix and tread up and down those stairs. There are always nice views and a breeze at the top.”