• Activities:

    Camping, Photography, Backpacking, Hiking

  • Skill Level:

    Intermediate

  • Season:

    Spring, Autumn, Winter

  • Trail Type:

    Out-and-Back

  • RT Distance:

    15.3 Miles

  • Elevation Gain:

    2903 Feet

Easy Parking
Food Nearby
Scenic

360 degree views of San Diego. Views of the San Diego skyline, the lights of Tijuana, and local mountains. Set up camp and watch the sunset over the ocean.

The trek begins on the Otay Mountain Truck Trail at Pio Pico Resort & Campground. You can either park and hike the entire trail, or drive up to a point a couple miles and park before the road becomes steep and rough. The distance on here is if you hiked the whole way. If you have a 4-wheel drive vehicle you can drive most of the way to the top of the mountain. We parked about 4 miles from the top and hoofed it the rest of the way.

Hiking is on the road and easy although steep at times. It can be very hot in this area so be sure to pack plenty of water, the best times are Nov-April to avoid the heat. I went through three liters of water in no time. We made it to the summit and hiked a mile down to set up camp on a ridge with views on both sides.

Pack List

  • Water
  • Chapstick
  • Camping gear (tent, sleeping bag, etc.)
  • Stove
  • Hiking shoes
  • Warm clothes
  • Camera
  • Snacks
  • Food
  • Your ID (you are close to the boarder)
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Please respect the places you find on The Outbound.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More

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Reviews

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Couldn't believe how amazing this was

over 2 years ago
over 2 years ago

Awesome Aaron! Border Patrol did ask us what the heck we were doing, so clearly there aren't many regular campers. But they were fine when we explained.

over 3 years ago
over 3 years ago

That's awesome that you got to camp up there. I've always talked about making it to the top of Otay Mountain and seeing this has re-sparked my interest. Thanks.

over 3 years ago
over 3 years ago

Kat Carney

Outdoor lifestyle photographer in San Diego.

Are we missing something? Suggest an edit

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