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Pine Valley – way past suburbia

Pine Valley Store, Pine Valley Bridge, Laguna fire, fall foliage

“Remember the big barbecue after the Laguna Fire?”
“Remember the big barbecue after the Laguna Fire?”
  • We didn't have a street address in Pine Valley

  • I took my children on a trip to my past. Friday after Thanksgiving, I herded Rebecca, Angela, Johnny, and Ben into our van. Lucy, who had awakened with a fever, stayed at home with my husband Jack. As we drove away from our home in San Marcos a little after 10, Rebecca asked from the far backseat, “Where exactly is Pine Valley?”
  • By Anne Albright, Dec. 12, 2002 .
  • Among the pines in Pine Valley

  • As someone who has primarily lived in suburbia, I find myself escaping to small-town USA when I am in need of a change in scenery. Most San Diegans head to Julian, Palomar, or Cleveland National Forest for a quick getaway. We San Diegans seem to be especially fond of quiet mountain villages. Speaking of which: Pine Valley is San Diego’s best-kept secret.
  • By Elizabeth Orient, March 10, 2019
Mount Laguna lookout, 15 minutes' drive from Pine Valley.
  • Best of 2001: Best Country General Store

  • Al Atallah's Pine Valley Store
  • 28820 Old Highway 80, Pine Valley
  • 619-473-8723
  • Talk to the old folks, and they lament the loss of the old general stores, where you knew Al and Al knew you, and he had just about anything you needed, or he'd get it for you. Well, they're not all gone. Six years ago Al Atallah took over a deli-pizza-gift shop in Pine Valley, ditched the gift shop, and "jam-packed it with stuff people out here actually need."
  • Dec. 27, 2001
  • Hike under a 400-foot-high bridge

  • Starting from the spacious Pine Creek Trailhead outside Pine Valley, the Secret Canyon Trail weaves and bobs its way along the canyon of Pine Valley Creek, finally emerging some 15 miles later at Horsethief Canyon, near Barrett Lake. Just 2 miles down this trail, you can experience an ant's eye view of the surrealistically lofty Pine Valley bridge, built in the mid-1970s over the deep gorge of Pine Valley Creek.
  • By Jerry Schad, May 11, 2000
  • Red sky

  • I remember the Laguna Fire. I was eight years old. We lived in a three-bedroom wood-frame house on Valley View Trail in Pine Valley. My father was the chief of the Pine Valley Volunteer Fire Department. Every Thursday evening at 7:00, the big siren in the middle of town would wail, and men from around the valley would pour into the tiny firehouse for the department’s weekly meeting.
  • By Leslie Ryland, Feb. 12, 1998
1970 Laguna fire - shot taken from Country Crest Drive, El Cajon. “We had trained for a fire coming down Kitchen Creek as much as you could train. But as far as training on anything like the Laguna Fire — no way."
  • Best of 2003: Best Local Fall Foliage

  • Take the SUV, not the sedan, and drive east on I-8 to the Highway 79 exit. Go north on 79 toward Julian, then take Old Highway 80 toward Pine Valley. Just before town, take a left onto Pine Creek Road. About a mile up the road, you'll pass the "End County Maintained Road" sign.
  • Dec. 25, 2003
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“Remember the big barbecue after the Laguna Fire?”
“Remember the big barbecue after the Laguna Fire?”
  • We didn't have a street address in Pine Valley

  • I took my children on a trip to my past. Friday after Thanksgiving, I herded Rebecca, Angela, Johnny, and Ben into our van. Lucy, who had awakened with a fever, stayed at home with my husband Jack. As we drove away from our home in San Marcos a little after 10, Rebecca asked from the far backseat, “Where exactly is Pine Valley?”
  • By Anne Albright, Dec. 12, 2002 .
  • Among the pines in Pine Valley

  • As someone who has primarily lived in suburbia, I find myself escaping to small-town USA when I am in need of a change in scenery. Most San Diegans head to Julian, Palomar, or Cleveland National Forest for a quick getaway. We San Diegans seem to be especially fond of quiet mountain villages. Speaking of which: Pine Valley is San Diego’s best-kept secret.
  • By Elizabeth Orient, March 10, 2019
Mount Laguna lookout, 15 minutes' drive from Pine Valley.
  • Best of 2001: Best Country General Store

  • Al Atallah's Pine Valley Store
  • 28820 Old Highway 80, Pine Valley
  • 619-473-8723
  • Talk to the old folks, and they lament the loss of the old general stores, where you knew Al and Al knew you, and he had just about anything you needed, or he'd get it for you. Well, they're not all gone. Six years ago Al Atallah took over a deli-pizza-gift shop in Pine Valley, ditched the gift shop, and "jam-packed it with stuff people out here actually need."
  • Dec. 27, 2001
  • Hike under a 400-foot-high bridge

  • Starting from the spacious Pine Creek Trailhead outside Pine Valley, the Secret Canyon Trail weaves and bobs its way along the canyon of Pine Valley Creek, finally emerging some 15 miles later at Horsethief Canyon, near Barrett Lake. Just 2 miles down this trail, you can experience an ant's eye view of the surrealistically lofty Pine Valley bridge, built in the mid-1970s over the deep gorge of Pine Valley Creek.
  • By Jerry Schad, May 11, 2000
  • Red sky

  • I remember the Laguna Fire. I was eight years old. We lived in a three-bedroom wood-frame house on Valley View Trail in Pine Valley. My father was the chief of the Pine Valley Volunteer Fire Department. Every Thursday evening at 7:00, the big siren in the middle of town would wail, and men from around the valley would pour into the tiny firehouse for the department’s weekly meeting.
  • By Leslie Ryland, Feb. 12, 1998
1970 Laguna fire - shot taken from Country Crest Drive, El Cajon. “We had trained for a fire coming down Kitchen Creek as much as you could train. But as far as training on anything like the Laguna Fire — no way."
  • Best of 2003: Best Local Fall Foliage

  • Take the SUV, not the sedan, and drive east on I-8 to the Highway 79 exit. Go north on 79 toward Julian, then take Old Highway 80 toward Pine Valley. Just before town, take a left onto Pine Creek Road. About a mile up the road, you'll pass the "End County Maintained Road" sign.
  • Dec. 25, 2003
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