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Penasquitos Creek Loop

Easy/Intermediate
 3.9 (18) 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 18 votes

#2367

Overall
  3.9 from 18 votes
5 Star
17%
4 Star
56%
3 Star
28%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%
Recommended Route Rankings

#314

in California

#2,367

Overall
58 Views Last Month
4,035 Since Oct 25, 2016
Easy/Intermediate

47%
7%
47%
0%
0%
0%

Photos

Mustard bloom in Los Peñasquitos Canyon.
Feb 19, 2017 near Carmel…, CA
Taking a quick break at the waterfall.
Mar 4, 2020 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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Check-Ins

Apr 24, 2021
Steve Abbott
Feb 14, 2021
Jeff Peters
Feb 13, 2021
Ivan Vo
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