Roam-O-Rama

Visit the hill where Alta California began

Presidio Park — try to channel Serra and Portola.

In 1769, Father Junípero Serra along with Gaspar de Portolá established the mission and presidio as the first European settlement on the Pacific Coast. There is minimal evidence of the original site just west of ...

Explore Borrego Palm Canyon’s less-visited neighbor, Henderson Canyon

Maybe spot a kettle of hawks

While Henderson Canyon lies just a few miles north of the very popular and often visited Hellhole and Borrego Palm canyons, it sees less activity and is a pleasant alternative for those wishing to avoid ...

Explore a short central city canyon under the Spruce Street suspension footbridge

Spruce Street suspension bridge needs no locks

This short walk is a good way to get a different view of the Spruce Street suspension bridge. It is a step back into San Diego’s early history. The walk to Arroyo Canyon starts at ...

Sinister nonnatives at Sunset Cliffs Natural Park

View impressive ocean views and sandstone cliffs

Sunset Cliffs Natural Park, a 68-acre City of San Diego regional park, offers spectacular sunset viewing, as implied by the name, however beauty can be found at any time of day. The park is most ...

Discover a hidden treasure on the UCSD campus

The short-leaf dudleya occurs nowhere else in the world.

Nestled on the north end of the UCSD campus, the trail through the Ecological Park is a true hidden treasure. The trail meanders through sections of the university’s planted Eucalyptus Grove and the Ecological Reserve, ...

Hike to Borrego Palm Canyon’s Third Grove

Go beyond the typical route and discover a less-visited section of the palm canyon

One of the most popular hikes in Anza-Borrego Desert State Park is the Borrego Palm Canyon Trail. On most weekends, there is a steady stream of people walking up this easy trail to the first ...

One of the easiest hikes in the San Diego area…if you're a mountain goat

The climb to Three Sisters is well worth it

While some in North America still shovel snow, San Diegans have the perfect venue for a hot March day — Three Sisters Falls, for a plunge in the frigid mountain water. The trail down to ...

Don’t damage the vernal pools in Carmel Mountain Preserve

This loop hike passes through chaparral and coastal sage scrub and has vernal pools in early spring

Carmel Mountain Preserve encompasses about 300 acres overlooking Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve with views of the ocean and, in wet springs, the trail passes within close proximity to several small vernal pools. This is ...

Hike from La Jolla Shores Beach to Torrey Pines State Beach

Miles of beach with shore birds, cliffs, and some rock scrambling

This hike offers views of breaking waves, tall, stratified cliffs, and shore birds such as the marbled godwit, whimbrel, and Heermann’s gull. Flying just above the waves you may see individuals or long lines of ...

Easy stroll around Discovery Lake in San Marcos

Immerse yourself in nature in any season at this neighborhood-friendly lake.

The loop around Discovery Lake in San Marcos makes a perfect hike for those who want to do a light and easy stroll but still see a diversity of species and beautiful lake scenery. This ...

The happiest place on earth, if you’re a dog

Mr. Good Boy want to go to Dog Beach?

It is hard to say who has more fun when watching the dogs and their humans play. Dog Beach, in Ocean Beach (O.B. to locals), was established in 1972 and has become a required destination ...

A lasso-shaped hike with options for distance and terrain

Poison oak awaits the unwary hiker in Descanso

The Descanso Sweetwater River Loop is a lasso-shaped hike that follows the Merigan Fire Road and then turns left onto the Saddleback Trail to start the loop. Make right turns onto the California Riding & ...

Views of Mount Woodson and Iron Mountain among the rewards

A gorgeous summit view of Poway and the surrounding mountains awaits the adventurous soul.

The Twin Peaks trailhead begins at Silverset Park, which is an ideal spot to park and head out onto the trail. For the adventurous souls who seek the summit, the trip is well worth the ...

Imagine eating woodrat stew in Felicita Park

Walk the site of one of the oldest and largest Native American villages in San Diego County.

Felicita Park provides a nice mix of easy-walking loop trails with negligible elevation conducive for young children in strollers and any fitness level. The ancient towering oaks provide shade, making this 53-acre fenced county park ...

Coast to Cactus: The genesis of San Diego's definitive hiking guide

Not meant to compete with Trailmaster Schad’s

Since Afoot and Afield in San Diego County first appeared in 1986, Jerry Schad’s comprehensive guide to local hiking trails has been considered the definitive resource. But Schad’s death from liver cancer in 2011 sent ...

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