Roam-O-Rama

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 ...

Plenty of options on the trail to Hellhole Canyon

Trail options offer elevation loss up to 4000 feet through various life zones

This 8-mile spur of the California Riding and Hiking Trail (CRHT) rewards hikers with a variety of desert habitats, providing exceptional views of the San Ysidro Mountains, Borrego Valley, Santa Rosa Mountains, and Salton Sea. ...

Soot on your pants, the price of entry to Oasis Spring

Indulge your inner botanist on a hike that wins the orchid and overlook award

Perennial water, even in the form of a seep, is a rarity in San Diego County in a biological zone generally adapted to drought. Add to this a steep east-west canyon in a north-south mountain ...

A city canyon with a great variety of native plants

Easy access to 32nd Street Open Space

Along with ease of access and walkability, a unique feature of 32nd Street Open Space is the breadth of variety of the most common chaparral plants found across the county, which include California sagebrush, laurel ...

How Lizard Canyon got its name is no surprise

Hike in a desert canyon for a breathtaking geologic landscape

Rangers began exploring Anza-Borrego Desert State Park systematically during the 1950s. They kept detailed logs and recorded their findings. When a wash or canyon did not have a name, they assigned one. Ranger Frank Fairchild ...

Always something amazing in Wright’s Field Preserve

Never judge a book by its cover, nor a field by the smattering of grasses that you see

The trails along the Wright’s Field Preserve are the perfect spot to walk the family dog, go jogging, or just take a stroll on a Sunday afternoon. Historically, this area was critical to the early ...

Juniper Canyon’s evidence of tectonic plate activity

Experience feeling alone with nature in the middle of the city

Juniper Canyon Open Space is mainly an urban remnant of the local native coastal sage scrub, with some intermingling of chaparral and some weedy growth along the trail. The trail itself varies from a narrow ...

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