Canyoneer Hike List

Navajo Canyon Open Space Park (Adobe Falls Trailhead)

Sunday, December 16, 2018 10 AM

Walk along the streambed part way up Navajo Canyon, which runs through the communities of Del Cerro and Allied Gardens. Many native plant species, including gooseberry and scrub oak, may be seen. This is an easy 2 mile hike with an elevation gain/loss of up to 200 feet. 10 AM–NOON.

(San Diego) From I-8, exit north on Waring Rd. and go 0.3 mile. Turn right on Adobe Falls Rd. and go 0.1 mile to the stop sign. Park on the street by the trailhead. No facilities. (GPS N32.782915, W117.086372) We are always hoping to see wildlife. Please leave dogs at home and come enjoy nature.




Anza-Borrego Desert State Park (Coyote Canyon‚ Lower Willows)

Saturday, December 29, 2018 9 AM

Hike to the largest year-round spring in San Diego County. With abundant water from Santa Catarina Spring, dense vegetation provides habitat for many birds and insects. Seasonal desert wildflowers add vibrant color to this unusual desert oasis. Wading through water may be necessary. The elusive peninsular bighorn sheep use the area as a seasonal water source. This is an intermediate 5 mile hike with an elevation gain/loss of up to 500 feet. 9 AM–3 PM.

(Borrego Springs) Take CA-67 or CA-78 east to Ramona, continue east on CA-78 for 14.4 miles to Santa Ysabel (Dudley‚Äôs world-famous bakery). Turn left on CA-79 towards Warner Springs and go 11.4 miles. Turn right on San Felipe Rd. (S-2) and go 4.7 miles. Turn left on Montezuma Valley Rd. (S-22) and go 17.4 miles. Turn right on Palm Canyon Dr. (S-22) and go 1.4 miles to Christmas Circle roundabout. Take the 4th exit to stay on Palm Canyon Dr. (S-22) and go 0.4 mile. Turn left on Di Giorgio Rd. and go 4.7 miles to the end of the pavement, and meet the Canyoneer host. Consolidate into 4WD or high-clearance vehicles and caravan to the trailhead. Facilities at Christmas Circle. (GPS N33.325078, W116.367493) We are always hoping to see wildlife. Please leave dogs at home and come enjoy nature.




Anza-Borrego Desert State Park (Palm Canyon)

Sunday, December 30, 2018 10 AM

Dramatic desert-varnished canyon walls rise high above en route to a clear, bubbling stream flowing near a cool, shady oasis of native California fan palms. Be on the lookout for elusive peninsular bighorn sheep that are often spotted along this trail. This is an intermediate 4 mile hike with an elevation gain/loss of up to 1000 feet. 10 AM–2 PM. 

(Borrego Springs) Take CA-67 or CA-78 east to Ramona, continue east on CA-78 for 14.4 miles to Santa Ysabel (Dudley‚Äôs world-famous bakery). Turn left on CA-79 towards Warner Springs and go 11.4 miles. Turn right on San Felipe Rd. (S-2) and go 4.7 miles. Turn left on Montezuma Valley Rd. (S-22) and go 17.4 miles. Turn left on Palm Canyon Dr. and go 0.2 mile. Turn right into the entrance to the Borrego Palm Canyon Campground (if you reach the Anza-Borrego State Desert Park Visitor Center you have gone too far). Drive to the west end of the campground and park in the day use parking lot and meet the Canyoneer host. There is an $10 day use fee. Facilities. (GPS N33.270230, W116.418276) We are always hoping to see wildlife. Please leave dogs at home and come enjoy nature.




Ruffin Canyon Open Space (Taft Loop)

Sunday, January 6, 2019 9 AM

Hike this trail through one of San Diego's urban canyons and explore part of the San Diego River watershed. Start with a visit to a native plant garden before descending into the canyon that is filled with both native and exotic plants and birds. This is an intermediate 3 mile hike with an elevation gain/loss of up to 1000 feet. 9–11:30 AM.

(Serra Mesa) From I-15, exit west on Aero Dr. and go 1.1 miles. Turn left on Ruffin Rd. and go 0.6 mile. Cross Gramercy Dr. and park on the east side of Taft Middle School. Alternate route: From I-805 exit north on Murray Ridge Rd. and go 1.3 miles. Turn right on Sandrock Rd. and go 0.1 mile. Turn left on Gramercy Dr. and go 0.6 mile. Turn right on Ruffin Rd. and park on the east side of Taft Middle School. No facilities. (GPS N32.801658, W117.129044) We are always hoping to see wildlife. Please leave dogs at home and come enjoy nature.




Bureau of Land Management - Southern Anza-Borrego (Painted Gorge) | New!

Saturday, January 12, 2019 9 AM

While Painted Gorge is one of the driest areas of the desert, the spectacular geology of the Coyote Mountains captures the imagination. This is an easy 4 mile hike with an elevation gain/loss of up to 200 feet. 9 AM–2 PM.

(Ocotillo) From I-8, turn north on S-2 (Imperial Hwy.). After passing under the freeway, turn right on S-80 (be careful not to turn up the westbound off-ramp against traffic). Proceed east on S-80 for 4.2 miles. Turn left on Painted Gorge Rd. and meet your Canyoneer Host. Consolidate into 4WD or high-clearance vehicles and caravan 5 miles to the trailhead. No facilities. (GPS N32.762778, W115.931532) We are always hoping to see wildlife. Please leave dogs at home and come enjoy nature.




South Rueda Canyon (Trail Loop)

Sunday, January 13, 2019 9 AM

Learn chaparral plants and the history of the area on this morning walk along the canyon following La Cuenta Dr. ridge for a three-mile loop via Tierrasanta Blvd./Ducos Place. This is an intermediate 3 mile hike with an elevation gain/loss of up to 200 feet. 9–11 AM.

(Tierrasanta) From I-15, exit east on Tierrasanta Blvd. Go 1.3 miles. Turn right on La Cuenta Dr. Go 0.2 mile. Park on the street next to Roadrunner Park. No facilities. (GPS N32.819188, W117.099919) We are always hoping to see wildlife. Please leave dogs at home and come enjoy nature.




Manchester Habitat Conservation Area (Manchester Trail)

Saturday, January 19, 2019 8 AM

Enjoy native plants and birds in a space preserved by the city of Encinitas. Several threatened or endangered species, such as San Diego thornmint and the California gnatcatcher bird, occur in this protected area. A view of neighboring hills and mountains can be obtained from a high point on the trail. There are steep stairs at entrance and ruts along the trail. This is an easy 4 mile hike with an elevation gain/loss of up to 500 feet. 8–11 AM.

(Encinitas) From I-5, go east on Manchester Ave. for 1 mile. Continue onto South El Camino Real. Go 0.7 mile. Turn right on Calle Ryan and go 0.3 mile. Park at the end of the road. No facilities. (GPS N33.030441, W117.251621) We are always hoping to see wildlife. Please leave dogs at home and come enjoy nature.




Daley Ranch (Jack Creek Falls) | Midweek

Wednesday, January 23, 2019 8:30 AM

Hike through chaparral to a high point overlooking Dixon Lake. If rainfall is near normal, see the beautiful Jack Creek Falls. This is an easy 5 mile hike with an elevation gain/loss of up to 200 feet. 8:30 AM–12:30 PM.

(Escondido) From I-15, exit east on El Norte Pkwy. and go 3.1 miles. Turn left on La Honda Dr. Go 1.3 miles. Parking lot for Daley Ranch is on the left. Facilities. (GPS N33.166395, W117.052283) We are always hoping to see wildlife. Please leave dogs at home and come enjoy nature.




Anza-Borrego Desert State Park (Harper Flat)

Saturday, January 26, 2019 9 AM

This hike follows Pinyon Wash into Harper Flat, an area of extensive Native American use. Multiple bedrock morteros worn into the boulders that were used in the preparation of food are found. Keep an eye out for broken shards of pottery and obsidian flakings left from the making of arrow points or other tools. Remember, anything found must be left here. This is a difficult 8 mile hike with an elevation gain/loss of up to 1000 feet. 9 AM–4 PM.

(Tamarisk Grove) Take CA-78/79 to Julian and turn right on Main St. Continue on CA-78 (Banner Rd.) and go 22.7 miles. Meet the Canyoneer host at the signed entrance to Pinyon Wash (4.1 miles past Yaqui Pass Rd.). Consolidate into 4WD or high-clearance vehicles and caravan to the trailhead. No facilities. (GPS N33.132113, W116.311510) We are always hoping to see wildlife. Please leave dogs at home and come enjoy nature.




Rancho Jamul Ecological Reserve (Grasslands Loop)

Saturday, February 2, 2019 9 AM

Canyoneers have special permission to hike this 5,600-acre California Fish and Wildlife ecological reserve. Here we'll find sage scrub and riparian environments, and efforts to convert grasslands to native habitat. The ruins of an historic brick-making kiln will also be visited. This is an intermediate 5 mile hike with an elevation gain/loss of up to 1000 feet. 9 AM–1 PM.

(Jamul) From I-8, exit onto CA-125 S and go 2.1 miles. Exit on Spring St. towards CA-94 E. Turn left and go 0.1 mile. Merge right onto CA-94 E and go 4.6 miles. Turn right on Campo Rd. (CA-94). Go 7.8 miles to the entrance of the reserve on the right. If you reach Honey Springs Rd. you have gone 1.8 miles too far. Facilities. (GPS N32.684428, W116.846851) We are always hoping to see wildlife. Please leave dogs at home and come enjoy nature.




Mission Trails Regional Park (Jackson Drive)

Sunday, February 3, 2019 8 AM

This side entrance to Mission Trails Regional Park allows viewing access to a combination of exotic and native plants. Meta volcanic, plutonic, and volcanic rocks make this area very interesting geologically. This is an easy 2 mile hike with an elevation gain/loss of up to 500 feet. 8–10 AM.

(Santee) From I-8, exit north on Waring Rd. Continue 1.5 miles, then turn left onto Princess View Dr. and go 0.7 mile. Turn right on Mission Gorge Rd. and go 1.4 miles. Turn left at Jackson Dr. and park in the lot. Alternate route: From CA-52, exit on Mast Blvd. and go 0.2 mile. Turn right on West Hills Pkwy. and go 0.7 mile. Turn right on Mission Gorge Rd. and go 2.7 miles. Turn right at Jackson Dr. and park in the lot. No facilities. (GPS N32.817156, W117.059574) We are always hoping to see wildlife. Please leave dogs at home and come enjoy nature.




Anza-Borrego Desert State Park (5 Groves Trail)

Saturday, February 9, 2019 9 AM

Explore the vegetation, bird, and animal life of the five palm groves, two of which have spring-fed surface water. Look for the unique torote tree, also called the elephant tree. This is an intermediate 4 mile hike with an elevation gain/loss of up to 500 feet. 9 AM–1 PM.

(Ocotillo) From I-8, exit on Imperial Hwy. (S-2) at Ocotillo. Turn left on S-2 and go 17.3 miles to about 0.1 mile before mile marker 47 (decreasing numbers). Turn left at the signed Mountain Palm Springs Campground entrance and follow a short dirt road to the end. Meet the Canyoneer host at the trailhead. Facilities are available at the campground. (GPS N32.862550, W116.218790) We are always hoping to see wildlife. Please leave dogs at home and come enjoy nature.




Santa Rosa Plateau Ecological Reserve (Vernal Pool Trailhead)

Saturday, February 16, 2019 8:30 AM

View the only known examples of southern basalt flow vernal pools and then continue on to visit two historic adobes, circa 1857. Learn about the plateau‚Äôs unique topography, geology, and habitats. This is an intermediate 5 mile hike with an elevation gain/loss of up to 500 feet. 8:30 AM–1 PM.

(Riverside County, Murrieta) From I-15 N, turn left on Clinton Keith Rd. and go 5.2 miles to Tenaja Rd. Continue 1.7 miles onto Via Volcano. Parking lot is 0.8 mile on the left. Pay the park‚Äôs day use fee: $4 adults, $3 children. Facilities. (GPS N33.509703, W117.294419) We are always hoping to see wildlife. Please leave dogs at home and come enjoy nature.




El Monte Park (Flume Trail)

Sunday, February 17, 2019 9 AM

The trail follows switchbacks through chaparral and sage scrub to reach the area where a flume was built to carry water from El Capitan Reservoir to downtown San Diego. This is a difficult 4 mile hike with an elevation gain/loss of up to 1500 feet. 9 AM–1 PM.

(Lakeside) From I-8, exit north on Lake Jennings Rd. and go 1.8 miles. Turn right on El Monte Rd. and go 3.9 miles. Meet the Canyoneer host at the parking lot on the left just before the park entrance. Facilities. (GPS N32.890350, W116.849897) We are always hoping to see wildlife. Please leave dogs at home and come enjoy nature.




Clevenger Canyon Open Space Park (South Trail) | Midweek

Wednesday, February 20, 2019 8 AM

The trail zigzags to the top of a peak with wide open views of the San Pasqual Valley. Spice bush and monkey flower are just two of the many native plant species found here. This is an intermediate 3 mile hike with an elevation gain/loss of up to 1000 feet. 8–10 AM.

(Escondido) From I-15, exit east on Via Rancho Pkwy. and go 0.2 mile. Continue onto Bear Valley Pkwy and go 0.6 mile. Turn right on San Pasqual Rd. and go 3.5 miles. Turn right on CA-78 E/San Pasqual Valley Rd. and go 6.7 miles. The parking area is on the right side of CA-78 about 5.5 miles past Safari Park. No facilities. (GPS N33.085277, W116.922198) We are always hoping to see wildlife. Please leave dogs at home and come enjoy nature.