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blue Coast to Crest Trail: Highway 79 to Volcan Mountain Summit

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2.5 mile 4.1 kilometer point to point


Ascent: 1,205' 367 m
Descent: -20' -6 m
High: 5,328' 1,624 m
Low: 4,132' 1,259 m


Avg Grade: 9% (5°)
Max Grade: 19% (11°)


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Trail shared by Matthew Kidd

Conclusion of the Coast to Crest Trail

Matthew Kidd

Features Views

Family Friendly Good views and many opportunities to rest in shade


This is the conclusion of the ambitious 70 mile Coast to Crest Trail that follows the San Dieguito River from its source near Volcan Mountain all the way to its terminus at the Pacific Ocean near Solana Beach. Section 8 is not complete because it lacks 1.15 miles of right away along Farmer Road from Highway 67. The trail shown is the part completed to date.

Parking is available on the shoulder of Farmers Road. Follow a gravel road 0.15 miles and step through the artistic Hubbell Gateway, designed by local artist and architect James Hubbell. Then begin an ascent along a wide doubletrack which was probably a dirt road at one point but is now closed off to regular traffic. Up to the junction with a dirt road heading north at 1.8 miles, the trail is often shaded and appealing in a way not captured well by photos. For variety, I recommend taking the alternative singletrack Five Oaks Trail either on the way up or way back even though its twists and turns make it a slightly longer journey.

The final 0.7 miles to the summit is completely exposed but shade and even a picnic table await at the summit near the fence enclosing the KBNN-FM Julian radio tower. About 0.1 miles into the final ascent you pass a chimney that is the only remains of an outpost constructed when Volcan Mountain was under serious consideration for the Hale Telescope which ended up at Palomar Mountain, 25 miles to the northwest. About halfway up the final ascent there is a tourist telescope to better enjoy the fine views.

Flora & Fauna

Scrub, chaparral, and woodland


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Sep 2, 2017
Robert Guard

Trail Ratings

  4.0 from 3 votes


  4.0 from 3 votes
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in California


12 Views Last Month
509 Since Jun 20, 2017
Intermediate Intermediate

Matthew Kidd
San Diego, CA
Matthew Kidd   San Diego, CA
There were lots of gnats in June, perhaps more so than usual after the heavy 2016-2017 winter rains. Jun 21, 2017

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