San Diego is surrounded by numerous hills on east and north. Good news is that many of them are accessible and contain good trails, for horse riding, mountain biking, trail running and for hiking.
These hills are typically few hundred meters high (vertically). Further away lies higher mountains, which offer more ascending and descending for longer trips, e.g. PCT.
Iron Mountain is a pretty popular place for day hikes on weekends. Its parking lot is full of cars at 8AM. One motivation to arrive early is heat, which may hit you on spring, summer and autumn time.
Have visited numerous hiking trails last year and usually one thing has been common in them; there's no water available in them.
On Iron Mountain, there's about 300 meters to climb vertically on 5 km's distance. Trails are in good condition. One cannot escape heat, there's no shadow any place near. So, either leave early, or pick up a cool day.
There's a nice gate welcoming you into to the trail from the parking lot. The next after the gate the trail went through a tree alley. At first the trail is is quite wide and dead straight, until it started to ascend more and more, having twists left and right.
Once you have climbed some time, you started to see to Ramona in east. Here the trail turned almost back to west and the final zig zag to the peak of Iron Mountain started.
Once on top, there's a pretty view in every direction. Had some snacks and enjoyed scenery.
Back down one had to share the one and only trail until at trails junction one could select alternative route back. Even further there's a loop which circled hidden within high bushes.
Managed to get some 10km on GPS.
In overall, a good place for a day hike. Next time I'll carry more water with me.
|A view towards south|