Grapevine Mountain is a prominent mountain located in northeastern San Diego County about 12 miles east of Julian in the Anza Borrego Desert.
The hike from the trailhead takes you along a cactus-strewn section of the PCT. Making the summit will require a little route-finding skill and a lot of off trail travel, including some light class 3 and 4 rock scrambling and bushwhacking through fields of cactus and thorny things. Notable sights from the summit include views of Mt. San Jacinto, the Superstition Mountains, Granite Peak, and Cuyamaca Peak.
We took an alternate route to the one described in Jerry Schad’s Afoot & Afield in San Diego County. Parking for the trailhead on our hike can be found on the northwest corner of HWY 78 and San Felipe Road.
Grapevine Mountain Hike trail info.
- Distance: 6.25 miles (round trip)
- Hiking time: 4-5 hours
- Type: Out and back
- Elevation gain: 2100’
- Difficulty: 7/10 (bushwhacking, off-trail navigation, rock climbing, scrambling)
- Elevation: 3955’
- Rank on 100 peaks list: 51/100
- Usage: Hiking, Trail running, Mountain biking, Backpacking
- When to go: Spring, Winter
- Agency: Anza Borrego Desert State Park
Map & directions for Grapevine Mountain Hike
- Directions to trailhead (via Google Maps)
Photos of Grapevine Mountain Hike
- John Muir Trail Day 5 – Past Donahue Pass to Red’s Meadow. 19.5 mile lake tour hike. - March 7, 2017
- John Muir Trail Day 4 – Tuolomne Meadows over Donahue Pass. 16.4 mile shakedown hike. - March 2, 2017
- John Muir Trail Day 3 – Sunrise Lakes to Tuolomne Meadows. 10.1 mile hike for hunger. - December 28, 2016