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Penasquitos Creek Loop

Easy/Intermediate
 3.9 (17) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

An east-west trail that provides access to the majority of Los Penasquitos Canyon Preserve trails.


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Map Key

13.1

Miles

21.1

KM

Loop

247' 75 m

High

35' 11 m

Low

319' 97 m

Up

319' 97 m

Down

1%

Avg Grade (1°)

8%

Max Grade (4°)

Dogs Leashed

Features River/Creek · Views · Waterfall · Wildflowers · Wildlife

Open all year. Parking areas are open from 8AM - 6PM.

Overview

A long loop through the preserve with unusual areas of lush, verdant woodlands that seem out of place in the desert landscapes of San Diego County.

Need to Know

Though signage is clear, some trails see illegal bike use to be aware of.

Description

This route provides access to the majority of the Preserve's trails.

Start at the Penasquitos Creek Park parking area and head west. The trail will wind around the creek and end at the highway. There are several creek tributaries you can cross along the trail.

At the highway, you cross the overpass and return on the south side of the creek heading east.

Besides the main trail, there is singletrack along the creek and outside of the main trail. There are also a number of spur trails to explore.

Flora & Fauna

Invasive wild fennel, poison oak, and rattlesnakes are greatly present but greatly outnumbered by the beautiful plant and animal species to keep an eye out for.

Contacts

Shared By:

Zander Göpfert with improvements by DD Demers

Trail Ratings

  3.9 from 17 votes

#2328

Overall
  3.9 from 17 votes
5 Star
18%
4 Star
53%
3 Star
29%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%
Recommended Route Rankings

#312

in California

#2,328

Overall
72 Views Last Month
3,423 Since Oct 25, 2016
Easy/Intermediate

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Photos

Taking a quick break at the waterfall.
Mar 4, 2020 near Carmel…, CA
Mustard bloom in Los Peñasquitos Canyon.
Feb 19, 2017 near Carmel…, CA
The falls
Sep 22, 2020 near Carmel…, CA
North side, Los Peñasquitos Canyon Trail
Sep 22, 2020 near Carmel…, CA
The view downstream from the falls
Sep 22, 2020 near Carmel…, CA
John Strauch leads the Friday hiking group through Los Peñasquitos Canyon.
Jun 24, 2017 near Carmel…, CA

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Weather


Current Trail Conditions

Update Conditions
All Clear 27 days ago See History
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Check-Ins

Sep 22, 2020
DD Demers
Peñasquitos Creek Park parking lot to waterfall and back 4.1mi — 1h 32m
Aug 8, 2020
Ishaque Ashar
Jun 27, 2020
Ken Shalom
Jan 12, 2020
Lian Zhu
Dec 22, 2019
Marysol OB
May 25, 2019
Joel A
Apr 6, 2019
skinnyb _
avoid the far west portion. cross at wagon wheel. 10mi — 12h 00m
Mar 31, 2019
Keekee Winslow
Really dry, pretty, and a bit crowded