San Diego Trails: Barnett Ranch Preserve

White-Tail Kite (Elanus leucurus).
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San Diego Trails: Barnett Ranch Preserve

If you have a love of wide open spaces, then you’ll be in heaven at Barnett Ranch Preserve. Origianlly a working ranch (part of it still is), this preserve has more than 700 acres of glorious grassland and oak woodlands, offering two different trails, which you can easily tag together depending on how far you want to go. If you go in the spring or summer time the place is awash with wildflowers of all different colors and sizes – watch out for the bright purple of the lupines, short yellow buttons and a carpet of tiny apricot colored flowers.  See how many you can spot on your travels. There’s a great variety of wild birdlife too – if you’re lucky you might catch a glimpse of a white-tailed kite (pictured), a Southern Californian rufous-crowned sparrow or an orange-throated whiptail (sounds a bit like an ice-cream doesn’t it?)

Barnett Ranch Preserve is open to hikers, bikers and horseback riders, and it really is a great place to spend a few hours in the fresh air. Dogs are welcome, just so long as they are kept on a leash. Allow anywhere between 2 and 4 hours for your visit, depending on how far your planning on going. It’s very easy going so really is suitable for all.

Barnett Ranch Preserve can be found in Ramona, (didn’t know it was lost!) Simply head out eastwards on Highway 67 in downtown Ramona, take a right turn onto 10th Street, this turns into San Vicente Road and about 2.5 miles later you can make a right turn into Barnett Ranch Preserve car park – easy peasy.

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