Peñasquitos to the Sea

26 February 2021
Ridgewood Park to Torrey Pines State Park
(12 miles, +400/-700 feet).

Today we did an urban hike, not too far from our house (we took a Lyft to the start and a Lyft home at the end!).  I wasn’t expecting much, but this is the last stretch of the San Diego Trans County Trail from the point where I left off in January.

The hike starts in Peñasquitos Canyon, which is lined by houses up on the ridge.

Not exactly wilderness

Nonetheless, we did have a challenging water crossing!

Don’t fall in!

The flowers are just starting to bloom here.

Cultivated radish
Bush Sunflower
Common mustard?

After passing near the edge of a cookie-cutter subdivision we passed through another park, this time with baseball fields.


But soon enough we were back in a more natural setting, where we saw lots of bunnies and even a family of deer!

Run away!
I did not expect to see deer in San Diego city limits!

The trail alternated between open scrubland and riparian forests right by Peñaquitos Creek.  We found what looked like a swimming hole, though I’m not sure how sanitary the water would be.

A nice place in the shade

Then the hike got even wilder as we approached “the waterfall.”  I wasn’t sure what to expect, and a long list of “DO NOT”s at the top of the spur trail did not inspire confidence.

Don’t do it!

But, again, I was surprised at how nice it was.

The waterfall
The pool below

We saw some of the dead flowers I really liked from my earlier section hike of the SDTCT near Poway.  I’m not sure what they are.

And another pretty one

And soon the gentle descent took us under the 5, to lunch at a nice deli in Sorrento Valley, and then on to Torrey Pines State Park.

First view of the cliffs at Torrey Pines
A nice one!
Mmmmm, lagoooon
A natural canal in the lagoon

When we crossed over S21, we saw something I had never seen before.  A poor owl must have gotten hit by a passing vehicle.

Sorry buddy

And then we were done!  I had to go down and touch the Pacific Ocean to make it official.

The End




2 Comments Add yours

  1. 100peaks says:

    What a great trip. This area used to be my playground. So the intensity of the parents for softball is well known. These signs hopefully help. The area around the falls in PQ canyon are very popular, and I have seen TP there from time to time. So that sign makes sense, too. 🙂 Sorry about the barn owl, but it sounds like you had a blast getting down there.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. JimmyJam says:

      Thanks! We definitely plan to explore that area some more.


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