Cowles Mtn

 11 votes

5.2 Miles 8.4 Kilometers


50%

Singletrack

1,280' 390 m

Ascent

-1,286' -392 m

Descent

1,584' 483 m

High

373' 114 m

Low

9%

Avg Grade (5°)

24%

Max Grade (14°)

Unknown

Update

This is a tough, technical climb!

Doug Seybert Jr

Overview

Very technical singletrack up to the fire road, a very steep grade up near the top, then an awesome blast to the bottom.
Dogs: Leashed

Description

This is one of the toughest, most technical singletrack climbs in San Diego. There are a few harder, but not many. Lots of railroad ties, chunky rock gardens, and steep rutted switchbacks. The best I've ever done on the singletrack is one dab, but I'm sure there are many out there that can do better.

I park on Mesa Road next to Big Rock Park. From there, follow the road south about a half mile, past the gate, and take the right-hand turn down across the wooden bridge over the creek. From here, there's just one left-hand turn between the trailhead and the fire road.

Once you reach the top of the singletrack, the fun continues. Hang a right on the fire road and follow it to the top as it progressively gets steeper and steeper until it's about a 25-30% grade at the very top. It's not very technical, but it's a TOUGH climb!

Take in some beautiful views of Sand Deigo at the top, and then turn around and bomb back down it, watching for hikers of course. This is a very popular trail with them, so keep your eyes open and be polite.

On the way down, after remembering to hang a left back onto the singletrack, I usually take the left at the split in the singletrack and take the Big Rock trail down. That's what's shown in this ride. Another option is to take the right and ride down Mesa Trail, the same way you climbed up. The Big Rock trail is quite a bit chunkier, whereas the Mesa Trail has better flow. Both are fun, and I've even done some rides where I do both!

Contacts

Rate Featured Ride


   Clear

4.1 from 11 votes


Get On-Trail Navigation

Send to Phone
Your Check-Ins

Check-Ins

Jun 23, 2017
Ali Hummos
Way too hard 5mi — 3h 00m
Mar 27, 2017
Shaughn Reilly
Trail is in rough shape. I think it's alot more fun! 5.6mi
Feb 13, 2017
Jason Hull
Feb 8, 2017
Raul Farias
Super tough uphill technical climb. Beautiful 360 degree views of San Diego on top. Technical and dangerous downhill but super fun.
Jan 6, 2017
Troy Delcueto
Aug 14, 2016
Daryn Picklesimer
Feb 17, 2014
Jake M

Stewarded By


Trail Ratings

  4.1 from 11 votes

#598

Overall
  4.1 from 11 votes
5 Star
18%
4 Star
73%
3 Star
9%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%
Rankings

#95

in California

#598

Overall
212 Views Last Month
6,678 Since May 22, 2013
Extremely Difficult Extremely Difficult

0%
0%
0%
13%
25%
63%

Conditions



Getting forecast...

0 Comments

MTB Project is part of the REI Co-op family,
where a life outdoors is a life well lived.

Shop REI Mountain Bike

MTB Project is supported by

Support Your Local IMBA Chapter