Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Places to Run in San Diego: Cowles Mountain

When I first moved back to San Diego, the first place I went to for a quick workout was Cowles Mountain. The hike is a great, quick and free hike! It is no surprise it is one of the most popular spots to check out in San Diego with 360 degree views of this beautiful city. 

Cowles Mountain is located within the city limits of San Diego, California in the San Carlos neighborhood. From downtown San Diego it takes about 15-20 minutes to get there. Since this spot is very popular, parking is always an issue. The parking lot is very tiny so the next bet is parking in the neighborhood streets. 

There are two different entrances to climb Cowles. I have yet to hike the back way, so I always enter from the main entrance. There are bathrooms located there before you start and a bit of information about the hike. Currently there are heat warnings for dogs. Yes this is a very dog friendly hike. You'll find doggie bags throughout the 1.5 mile hike to the top and water bowls for our canine friends.

The mountain is named after George A. Cowles, an early ranching pioneer in San Diego County. Its 1,593-foot (486 m) summit has an elevation change of about 950 feet (290 m).  Immediately starting the hike you get to see amazing views. 

There are other trails you can follow along, but I have yet to try them out.  The Cowles Mountain trail is very well marked. In 2013, it was closed for maintenance and they made several improvements to water drainage and rock steps. 

Reaching to the top is such an absolute rush. The views at the top make the hike completely worth it. People either run or walk up this hike. It's tough to run but you see people do it all the time. Wether you come first thing in the morning, midday, or evening this place is always packed with people. I would say that would be the only negative aspect about this hike...the amount of people.  I've come here during different times of the day but by far my favorite time to come is the evening to see the sunset. 

So if you happen to need the great outdoors, I would highly recommend going out for this hike. Trust me when I say this hike will make you appreciate all that you have. Life is a blessing so live each day to its fullest.

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  1. Getting outside in nature makes working out so much more refreshing, uplifting, energizing!

  2. We were in San Diego last September, and I wish I would have known where to go hiking and exploring more outdoors. Maybe next time! :)

    1. Let me know when you come back to visit next time! :)

  3. You run in such beautiful places!! Thanks for sharing with us, Daisy :)

    1. I feel really blessed to be here and get to run in all these great spots!