Hike Stonewall Peak

San Diego Stonewall Peak Loop

Added by Grant Nyquist

Take in a 360 degree view over the other peaks and meadow below, and a birds-eye view of Lake Cuyamaca. Only hikers are allowed on the trail.

This hike is one of the most popular in the Cuyamaca Rancho State Park. When you reach Stonewall Peak's summit, enjoy the view of the surrounding park and nearby Lake Cuyamaca. The hike up the east side is a popular and relatively easy trail. Although you'll be gaining 800 feet, the hike is relatively easy as you'll be heading up switchbacks until the last stretch to the summit. Just before the top, climb the stairs (there's a railing in place for stability) and take in the breathtaking view. When you get your fill, you can go back down the way you came, or head down the "back" side, completes the loop for an additional mile and half. If there's snow, it will last the longest on the "back" side, so enjoy it as you hike back to the trailhead.

Beware of the poodle-dog bush on the hike, it had been known to cause an allergic reaction.

If you want to make this a great night hike, you can set up camp at Paso Picacho for a convenient base camp.

Photos: Kevin

Pack List

  • 10 Essentials
  • $8 for parking at the Paso Picacho Campground
  • Camera
  • Tripod
  • Layers
  • Good trail shoes or hiking boots
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Camping, Hiking, Photography

Skill Level:



Year Round

Trail Type:



5.5 Miles

Elev. Gain:

800 Feet



Adult Beverages
Easy Parking

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How to Get There

4 months ago

Low Risk, High Reward

This trek is perhaps one of the best things for a beginner just looking to go outside, or for a family with young kids. The hike itself is not very strenuous but the reward... 360 degree views of beautiful Southern California. Protips: bring sunscreen during the summer, also 8 dollars for parking just across the trail head. And stay on the marked trail, life is just better that way. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b7cilGEAzf0

4 months ago

7 months ago


We took the hour drive from San Diego and it was well worth it! In fact, it inspired us to do more hiking out in Julian. Views were incredible, boulders were awesome to climb on the way up and endless photo ops.

7 months ago

7 months ago

When To Go!

Me and my girlfriend just made the 1 hr drive from San Diego for this hike and it was well worth it! We went on a partly cloudy Sunday following a weekend of rain and the clouds and fog that were rolling through the mountains made the hike even more beautiful than we imagined. I recommend doing this hike on a day like this one. The clouds and fog provide a unique atmosphere that is sometimes hard to find in our usual summery climate.

7 months ago

12 months ago

Great Fun Hike

Agree with the review below, great hike for beginners. Not too tough but a lot of payoff. I have full turn by turn directions on my blog here: https://hikingguy.com/hiking-trails/hiking-stonewall-peak-trail-san-diego/

12 months ago

about 1 year ago

Good day hike

It's not that tough, so if you know anyone that is new to "hiking" this is a great intro

about 1 year ago

over 1 year ago

A must see of a grand view

over 1 year ago

over 1 year ago

If you're into climbing, check out mountain project before getting up here-- there's a few short trad climbs around the peak!

over 1 year ago

Added by Grant Nyquist

I'm basically awesome, more basic though

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