Cowles Mountain South Trail

Cowles Mountain Southern Trail

If you’re looking for a quick, challenging hike in San Diego that is easy to find and offers unobscured views of San Diego for as far as the eye can see, look no further than Cowles Mountain. But be ready because lots of other people are looking for the same thing.

The hike is short and kid friendly. Dogs are allowed on the trail as well, making it a popular destination for everyone, from families to fitness fanatics, both young and old alike. The trails can get crowded, even on weekdays, and parking hard to come by. Get an early start to beat the crowds, but don’t expect a quiet, secluded nature hike, because you won’t find it on Cowles Mountain.

Cowles Mountain South Trail trail info.

  • Distance: 3 miles (round trip)
  • Hiking time: 2.0 hours
  • Type: Out and back
  • Elevation gain: 950’
  • Difficulty: 6/10 (elevation gain)
  • Elevation: 1593’
  • Rank on 100 peaks list: 91/100
  • Usage: Hiking, Trail running, Dogs allowed, Good for kids
  • When to go: Spring, Fall, Winter
  • Agency: Mission Trails Regional Park

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