Santa Ysabel, California

The best Trails and Outdoor Activities in Santa Ysabel, California, offer a variety of exciting outdoor adventures. One of the top attractions is the Santa Ysabel East Preserve Trail. This 6-mile trail is a must-visit for its scenic views of rolling hills, oak woodlands, and native grasslands. It's a moderate hike with a few steep sections, making it a fun challenge. Another highlight is the Santa Ysabel West Preserve Trail. It's a 4.5-mile trail with a gentle slope, perfect for a leisurely hike. You'll pass through dense forests and open meadows, with views of the Santa Ysabel Creek. For a unique outdoor activity, visit the Dudley's Bakery and Julian Station for local food and wine tasting. It's a great way to relax after a day of hiking.

Top Spots in and near Santa Ysabel

  • Santa Ysabel, California

    Hiking in Santa Ysabel

    3.0
    Starting at the trailhead on Hwy 79, enter through the gate and make sure to close it behind you - the preserve is open range area for herds of cows, make sure not to disturb them when hiking. From the gate you'll see the sign with a detailed map of trails that are available for hiking. The trail...
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  • Warner Springs, California

    Eagle Rock via the Pacific Crest Trail

    5.0
    6.2 mi / 807 ft gain
    With doing more hikes in the SoCal area, I've realized half the battle is just trying to find the damn trailhead.Technically you have 2 ways to enter this trail ... Start from 79 and add a very enjoyable extra 3ish miles, or start from the Warner Springs Fire Station, for a total 7 mile hike.We c...
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  • Julian, California

    Volcan Mountain Trail

    4.82 mi / 1270 ft gain
    Volcan Mountain Trail located near Julian, California is a moderate day hike. This well-maintained trail offers beautiful views, but keep in mind there isn't too much sun protection, so be sure to pack plenty of water and coverage on sunnier days.  Dogs are permitted on the trail on a leash. 
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  • Ramona, California

    Explore the Sutherland Dam

    2.0
    1 mi
    Once your on Sutherland Dam Rd, follow it until your right next to the dam. Park on the side of the road where you see a small turn-out. Walk down to the side of the dam and drop down onto the concrete flooring of the dam. Walk on-top where allowed, and check out the views of the lake and the mo...
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  • Borrego Springs, California

    Hike through Borrego Palm Canyon

    5.0
    3.25 mi / 450 ft gain
    Borrego Palm Canyon Trail is located just north of the park visitor center, making it a convenient place to begin your exploration of the Anza-Borrego Desert. To reach the trailhead, drive through Borrego Palm Canyon Campground, the largest developed campground in the park, where an $8 day use fe...
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  • Borrego Springs, California

    Camping in Anza-Borrego State Park

    5.0
    With over 600,000 acres, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park is the largest state park in the contiguous United States. 500 miles of dirt roads, 12 wilderness areas and miles of hiking trails provide visitors with an unparalleled opportunity to experience the wonders of the Colorado Desert. The park i...
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  • Borrego Springs, California

    Hike to Maidenhair Falls via Hellhole Canyon in Anza Borrego Desert State Park

    5.1 mi / 974 ft gain
    This 5.1 mile hike begins near the visitor center of Anza Borrego Desert State Park and gains 974 feet of elevation while climbing up a canyon to a small waterfall. It is an interesting hike as you can see the plant life change as you get closer to the waterfall. There are parts where the trail g...
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  • Santa Ysabel, California

    Three Sisters Falls

    4.9
    3.42 mi / 906 ft gain
    Three Sisters Falls is by far the best hike, for the most reward, that I've gone on in the close vicinity of San Diego. Only a short hour and a half drive from downtown San Diego, the hike offers all the draws of a National Park: remote wilderness, strenuous hiking, scenic mountain views, and ama...
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  • Borrego Springs, California

    Hike the Panorama Overlook in Anza Borrego Desert State Park

    1.6 mi / 636 ft gain
    This is an out and back 1.6 mile round trip with 636 feet of elevation gain. The top has excellent views of Anza Borrego. It is close to the visitor center.
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  • Ramona, California

    Cedar Creek Falls

    4.8
    5.52 mi / 1024 ft gain
    The trail to Cedar Falls starts out at a hill in a residential area and ends in an unexpected spot where there is a beautiful waterfall complete with a swimming hole. Surrounded by 75-foot-high cliffs, a magnificent waterfall splashes into a pool known as the Devil’s Punch Bowl. Hikers have been ...
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  • San Diego County, California

    Hike Sheep Canyon

    5.0
    3 mi / 1000 ft gain
    Sheep Canyon is probably the most remote palm canyon in Anza-Borrego Desert State Park in California. While Palm Canyon is easily accessed from the State Park campground, Sheep Canyon is on a dirt road that requires stream crossings and potentially a high-clearance 4WD vehicle.  The canyon is nam...
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  • Julian, California

    Hike Stonewall Peak

    4.7
    3.82 mi / 820 ft gain
    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 relat...
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  • Julian, California

    Hike Cuyamaca Peak

    4.5
    5.5 mi / 1700 ft gain
    This peak is one of the tallest in the county. Reaching the summit of the peak takes you to an elevation of 6500'. Although this peak isn't as challenging as others nearby, it's located in the center of San Diego, which offers up amazing views, which is the main reason to take this hike. The best...
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  • Julian, California

    Blair Valley Trail

    11.4 mi / 873 ft gain
    Blair Valley Trail is a loop trail where you may see wildflowers located near Julian, California.
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  • Borrego Springs, California

    Anza Borrego Metal Sculptures

    4.6
    Here's a map I made that marks where most of the sculptures are (here). First, you enter the park and drive through the little city of Borrego Springs. There will be a roundabout you can't miss, so you know you're on the right path. There is nowhere to park to get to the sculptures specifically,...
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  • Palomar Mountain, California

    Hike to Palomar Observatory from the Palomar Observatory Campground

    5.0
    4.4 mi / 718 ft gain
    Situated in the Palomar Mountains of Cleveland National Forest, Palomar Observatory Campground offers many amenities for enjoyable camping and exploring the area.  A portion of the campsites loop has been cleared of trees with level cement pads to allow campers to set up their own telescopes.  Dr...
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Camping and Lodging in Santa Ysabel

Oak Grove Campground
Warner Springs, California

Oak Grove Campground

Fry Creek Campground
Palomar Mountain, California

Fry Creek Campground

Observatory Campground
Palomar Mountain, California

Observatory Campground

El Prado Group
Laguna Meadow Road

El Prado Group

Laguna
Mount Laguna, California

Laguna

Horse Heaven Group
Mount Laguna, California

Horse Heaven Group

Guides, Insights and Stories from Santa Ysabel

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