San Diego Trails: Pacific Crest Trail/Laguna Mountain Rim

An old tree on Mount Laguna, Cleveland Nationa...
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San Diego Trails: Pacific Crest Trail/Laguna Mountain Rim

The Pacific Crest Trail is around 2,650 miles from Mexico to Canada, passing through California, but there’s no need to do the whole thing (it takes around 6 months), if you’ve just got a couple of hours to spare why not just do a small section around the eastern edge of the Laguna escarpment through the Cleveland National Forest. The views are amazing and you can see all the way down to the desert, 4000 feet below. There are plenty of viewpoints so don’t forget to take your camera, if you dare to look down!

The Laguna Mountain Rim part of the Pacific Crest Trail can be easily accessed from the parking area at the Penny Pines monument, just a little north of Mount Laguna. You will be able to see a marker for “Trail to Garnet Peak” which is the path you should take, if you’re an amateur hiker or have a 2 hour time limit, then you should turn around once you reach the junction of the Garnet Peak Trail and the PCT, you can always do that one another day.

Don’t forget to keep your eyes open on the way back, you might be amazed at how differently things look from the other direction. If you go in the summer time you’ll be amazed at the quantity, variety and quality of the wild flowers, they are absolutely beautiful. Ah, one more thing, if you do go in the summer time just bear in mind that there isn’t much shade on the trail, better take a hat and a bottle of water!

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