Palomar Mountain: Doane Valley loop
||7 mile (loop) - 3 Hour, 45 minutes (loop). Easy/Moderate.
||4445 - 5320 feet
||All car, see below.
Turn right at the park sign onto the gated paved road.
Turn right downhill on the Chimney Flats Trail.
At the Upper Doane Valley Trail sign you can follow a trail to the left of the creek or the dirt road as we did to the right of the creek.
On the pavement along the school turn left at the parking lot.
Take the Doane Valley Trail and the Doane Valley Nature Trail.
There may be no sign at the end, but turn left (west) onto the Lower Doane Valley Trail.
At the next intersection, take the French Valley Trail to the right.
To shorten the hike, stay left on the Lower Doane Valley Trail.
You are now entering the largest stand of Pinus ponderosa, perhaps in San Diego County.
Take the Wier/Weir Trail south, keep going south until you meet the Baptist Trail, now head uphill out of the valley.
At the campground, find Scott's Cabin Trail, which leads back to the car.
Expect shade most of the way.
Warning: There may be small insects around, they didn't bite us, but they can be very annoying.
How to get here:
Follow East Grade Rd or South Grade Rd uphill. Do not follow the park signs.
Take S7 and stay on S7 at the intersection. Turn left just before the Palomar Mtn General Store.
Park on the asphalt just before the Palomar Mountain State Park sign.
This is just outside the State Park, so parking is free (2023).
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