The Stonewall Peak Trail at the Cuyamaca Rancho State Park was a lovely hike, great views, and different flowers/vegetation along the trail. It gives a fairly good workout too. I was feeling it in my legs by the time we got to the top. The trail has switchbacks so the climb is not overly challenging, you do have a 900 feet elevation gain to the top. It’s 4 miles total, up and back. According to the brochure, this is their most popular trail in the park. We saw other hikers, but they were spread-out. Lots of children along for the hike, so not overly difficult. Make sure to bring plenty of water, it gets hot!
The entrance to the Stonewall Peak Trail, is to the right (if driving from San Diego) of Hwy 79, right across the street from the entrance to the Paso Picacho Campground. Parking in the campground is $8.00. P and I took advantage of this since it was our first time there (we got a brochure out of it). The parking fee can also be applied the same day to the Green Valley Campground. If you are still looking for a bit more of a hike you could head down to the Green Valley Falls trail (¾ mile each way).
The Stonewall trail starts out wider, and narrows as you climb. Some sections are wider than others. There are warnings of wildlife, but we only saw birds, bugs, butterflies and lizards. YAY no snakes!!! Oh and one chipmunk.
The top has quite the view, though we had a little trouble figuring out how to get to the very top. You need to stay to the right and go over and around. We went more left, and clambered up some fairly big rocks near the edge. The top has quite the view. I’m not 100% comfortable with heights and it made me feel a bit shaky. Also, it was taken over by flying ants, which did not make me hang around for too long.
Overall, it was a great hike and we had a lot of fun. The Cuyamaca Rancho Park has over 10 hiking trails to choose from. Ever since we took a drive to Julian, I’ve said I wanted go up here for a hike, I was so happy to cross one off the list! We will certainly be back to tackle one of the other trails in the area.
A few notes:
- It’s about a 45 minute drive to get to Cuyamaca Park from San Diego.
- Bring water!
- Wear sunscreen & bring some, there is very little shade.
- Make sure you have gas before HWY 79.
- Parking is $8, bring cash.
- Address for Paso Picacho Campground: 13652 Hwy 79, Julian, CA 92036
I’ve been bitten by the hiking bug 🙂 How about you? Hiking, yay or nay?