Hiking the South Clevenger Trail

Last Saturday, looking for a quick practice hike, we decided for the Clevenger trail off of Highway 78 on the way to Ramona. Here is a post with a lot more pictures than I took, so it may help. The trailhead is off the first main pullout off 78 heading east, a few miles after the San Diego Zoo Safari Park.

Clevenger Hike

The whole hike from trail head to peak is 2.3 miles and can be done in a little more than an hour. It was a hot day, and we started at about 10:00 am, with the sun beating down. For a moment there I wondered if it was wise. But we made it just fine. At the point where I have the red arrow in the map above, there is a surprise:

Clevenger Chairs

Somebody mounted two steel chairs, cemented on top of a large boulder, and built a wooden staircase in the back of the boulder to reach the chairs. The chairs rock gently, and all that is missing is a small refrigerator with a couple of cold ones, and it would truly be paradise. The view into the valley is spectacular, the breeze nice and refreshing. I could have rested there for a long time.

However, facing to the right, I saw this vista of the peak or endpoint of the Clevenger Canyon South hike:

Clevenger Point

So I hiked the 0.3 miles over to the nubby

Norbert on Top of Clevenger

From there, I and took a picture of the valley from which we started:

Clevenger View

The red arrow points to my car!

The Clevenger trail is a nice 3 or 4 hour excursion from Escondido, including driving up and back, and hiking. I’d recommend spring or fall, and not July 1. In July, be sure to bring a cooler with a couple of beers for the glorious chairs.

Leave a Reply