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Stories by The Canyoneers

Mission Trails, Visitor Center Loop

The nation’s largest urban natural park, right off I-8

Encounter several natural habitats and an Indian acorn-grinding area on this short trail.

Mission Trails, Oak Grove Loops

Discover a Kumeyaay dwelling nestled in a shady oak grove.

The highlights of this short hike include the transition from grasslands and coastal sage scrub habitats to small shaded oak woodland with majestic coast live oaks and rare Engelmann oaks found along a stream where ...

Tijuana Estuary

Tijuana Estuary’s endangered annual hemiparasite, only found in ten locations.

Reddish egrets and yellow-headed night herons are sometimes seen in this section of the Pacific Flyway.

Coast to Crest Trail, Del Mar

Early morning or late afternoons are the best times for birding on this section of the Pacific Flyway.

Viejas Mountain

Enjoy great views of San Diego all the way up to the top of Viejas Mountain, which is green again after the Cedar Fire in 2003.

Mt. Woodson via the Blue Sky Reserve

Stroll through one of San Diego’s more scenic oak woodlands and experience a diversity of vegetation types on your way up to the top of Mt. Woodson where rock climbers may be seen.

Sunrise Trailhead, Soapstone Loop

Anza-Borrego’s high elevation multiuse trails appeal to hikers, bikers, and equestrians.

Gonzales Canyon, Torrey Pines Loop

Find two rare plants on the Torrey Pines Loop Trail — bush rue when descending into Gonzales Canyon and Torrey pine trees when ascending to the mesa top.

Living Coast Discovery Center Trail

This short hike and visitor center are perfect introductions to coastal birds and marsh habitat.

Green Valley Falls Loop

Easily accessible falls and multiple crossings of the Sweetwater River through chaparral, riparian, and meadow habitats.

Mt. Gower Open Space Preserve, South Route

Unusual rock formations, views, and a variety of landscapes and habitats make this one of the better hikes in the county.

Lakeside Linkage Preserve and Whitaker Trail

Panoramic views of Lakeside and East County mountains from “God’s Hill”

This ridge climb to a historic site has panoramic views of Lakeside and East County mountains.

Palomar Mountain: Weir-French Valley Loop

This hike includes trails beneath an old oak canopy, morteros, open meadows, two creeks, and a small pond with a stone weir.

Louis A. Stelzer County Park Trails

Hike from a tree-shaded riparian area to a mountain peak

The varied topography and ecosystems of Louis A. Stelzer County Park make this 420-acre reserve a delight to visit. It is situated along Wildcat Canyon Creek and includes the rocky hillsides, ridgeline, and a peak ...

Indian Creek Trail Loop

Indian Creek Trail does not give up surprises easily. Hike this trail for woodlands, streams, and panoramic views in the Laguna Mountains.

Big Laguna-Gatos Spur

Aromas of butterscotch and grape soda in Cleveland National Forest

Pines, oaks, and incense cedar on this six-mile loop of the Gatos Big Laguna Trail Spur.

Miramar Reservoir

Water birds on the lake and chaparral vegetation on the slopes make this a pleasant walk.

Lakeside's River Park

Sand mine becomes riparian willow forest in Lakeside.

This hike features the work of a local conservancy to restore this section of the San Diego River.

Lopez Canyon, Los Peñasquitos Canyon Preserve

This Los Peñasquitos tributary canyon has varied natural resources and a rich biodiversity of species.

Stonewall Peak Loop

Beware of Stonewall Peak's poodle-dog bush

Follow this switchback trail to granitic 5730-foot-high Stonewall Peak for views of Cuyamaca Reservoir and the nearby peaks of Cuyamaca, Middle, and North.

Lute Ridge, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park

The largest known fault scarp on the North American continent existing on unconsolidated sediments.

Rancho La Costa Habitat Conservation Area

Carlsbad’s high point offers a 360-degree view from the coast to the mountains.

Ruffin Canyon Open-Space Preserve

Hike cobbled streambeds with small groupings of palm trees and chaparral plants lining the canyon.

Inner Pasture view via Moonlight Canyon

Hike to a viewpoint overlooking an area where Indians once lived and enjoy the silence and isolation.

Butler Canyon Loop, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park

Visit an old Indian village site and hike down a high-walled serpentine gorge.

Tecolote Canyon Natural Park

Enjoy a pleasant walk along the southern section of the Tecolote Canyon Nature Park

Hiking the Pacific Crest Trail along Agua Caliente Creek

Stands of majestic oaks and sycamores line a bubbling stream along a section of the trail.

Indian Gorge to Palm Bowl

Discover a little-known route to one of Anza-Borrego’s remote palm groves

Yaqui Well, Anza-Borrego State Park

This historic watering hole is a premier birding site in San Diego County.

North Shore, Lake Hodges Dam

A walk to the Hodges Dam and back through coastal sage scrub habitat.

Leo Carrillo Ranch Historic Park

Once a mecca for the Hollywood set; includes trails connected to the City of Carlsbad

Desert View Trail, William Heise County Park

Hike up to 4927 feet for Glen’s View, with panoramic views that include North Peak, Julian, and the desert.

Anza-Borrego's all-access trails

Paved and dirt trails encourage all visitors (including those in wheelchairs) to experience the desert

Sunset trail

Big Sky Country in San Diego County

Montana is not the only state that can boast being “Big Sky Country.” We have the same bragging rights in our own backyard: the Laguna Mountains (locals call it “the Lagunas”). Tucked in the Cleveland ...

Lake Murray Kiowa

A walk at an important lake where waterfowl are plentiful.

Kate O. Sessions Memorial Park

Explore the wild side of this much-loved neighborhood park with beautiful views and a wide array of native and exotic plants.

Chimney Flats loop from Doane Pond

One of the finest trails in Palomar Mountain State Park is this loop with great surrounding views and interesting plants.

Alcoholic Pass Trail

A short, steep desert trail gives bird’s eye view of canyons and mountains.

Elfin Forest Recreational Reserve

Overlooks with dramatic views

Up to you: leisurely stroll or heart-pumping workout in the Elfin Forest.

Trackin' critters on Fiesta Island

Hike on a man-made island in Mission Bay where invasive plants dominate the landscape.

Dripping Springs Trail

This Agua Tibia Wilderness hike has dramatic vistas and a variety of vegetation types.

Daley Ranch Pond View Trails

The cooling, welcoming sight of a pond while hiking in the chaparral on a hot day.

Palomar Mountain: Observatory Trail

A tree-shaded trail with bucolic vistas leads to a world-class observatory.

Seven Bridge Walk

Cross seven access bridges to San Diego’s historical streetcar routes on this downtown loop walk that blends the present with the past.

Cabrillo National Monument's Bayside Trail

This spectacular hike showcases San Diego’s skyline, Coronado, and the bay.

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