Cuyamaca Peak, one trail really enjoyed in San Diego
Cuyamaca Peak, one trail really enjoyed in San Diego.
After having to pay $8 for a day parking pass in the Paso Picacho Campground, and park the car, we have going to the head through the campgrounds to the base of the mountain. The trail is a paved fire road. The Fire road I think is a shorter way to get to the peak so I would really recommend taking the Azalea trail to get a good workout.
So We decided to take the Azalea Glen trail loop which took us to the right instead of going left onto the fire road. Summit elevation is 6,512 feet, with an overall elevation gain of about 1,700 feet. The hike is 5.6 miles there-and-back, it take 3-4 hours.
Beacuse the Cedar fire in 2003 that burned 95% of Cuyamaca’s coniferous trees and oak tree left it looking scarred and bare, you feel like another world. The most dramatic and devastating event in Cuyamaca’s history arrived in the form of the 243,000 acre Cedar Fire. But fortunately, you can see new growth as small pine trees poke itself from the ruins. Many trees are still charred and it appears as though cleanup is still being done on this trail. But fortunately, you can see new growth as small pine trees poke itself from the ruins. I can imagine before the Cedar fire ago it looking like a real forest and magical !
Cuyamaca Peak is the second highest peak in San Diego County. It sits a mere 20 feet lower but is far more accessible than Hot Springs Mountain near Warner Springs.
From San Diego, take Interstate 8 and exit at Highway 79 for Descanso and Julian. Turn left, and follow the road until the junction with Highway 80. Bear left, and continue on 79 until reaching Paso Picacho Campground Park, then go through the campground to the cabins in the back. Find the trailhead.
From Julian, head south on Highway 79, past the lake and into Paso Picacho Campground.Go through the campground to the cabins in the back. Find the trailhead.