Los Penasquitos Canyon Preserve, San Diego

4.3
#10 of 13 in Nature in San Diego
Los Peñasquitos Canyon Preserve is an urban park in San Diego, California. Stretching approximately 7mi, the park encompasses some 4000acre of both Peñasquitos and Lopez canyons, and is one of the largest urban parks in the United States. The preserve is jointly owned and administered by the City of San Diego and the County of San Diego.Los Peñasquitos is also home to the historic Rancho Santa Maria de Los Peñasquitos, an adobe home built in the early 1820s. Operated by the County of San Diego, the home has been restored and tours are available for the public.Natural historyMore than 500 plant species, more than 175 types of birds, and a great variety of reptiles, amphibians and mammals make up the rich bio-diversity of the park. Many of these species are rare or endangered.The geology of the Preserve area has been described in a geology book by John Northrup in conjunction with the University of California & published by Windsor Associates. Nearby is the Torrey Pines State Reserve, where one of only two extant stands of the endangered Torrey Pine is found.Further reading C.Michael Hogan (2008) Torrey Pine: Pinus torreyana, Globaltwitcher, ed. Nicklas Stromberg John Northrop. 1988. Geology of Los Peñasquitos Canyon, 40 pages
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Los Penasquitos Canyon Preserve Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
48 reviews
Google
4.6
TripAdvisor
  • Pensaquitos is a great flat hike that leads to a small waterfall. The trail is used for biking, horsebike riding, and hiking. It's an easy hike to do, but be aware of the weather conditions. On sunny ...  more »
  • I wrote about this canyon back in 2017 when I discovered the trail to the hidden water fall. That trail leads to a hidden gem. I notice others have written about "easy hike for beginners" or "dog frie...  more »
Google
  • Easy, pretty level. A couple different routes to take, so you can choose. Then when you get to the waterfall, you can jump around the rocks to see different tiny waterfalls.
  • Good hiking and walking paths. Only walked the cactus trail and saw the creek but there was tons more to explore, including a waterfall!
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