29 September 2013

Hiking and Mountain Biking on Lake Hodges trails

September 2013

Lake Hodges lies on North County of San Diego. Actually, it's a reservoir, having a dam on south west side. Lake and its surroundings seem to offer good variety of outdoor activities, on water and on its trails near by.

Been spending time around Lake Hodges for hiking, running, birdwatching and recently mainly for mountain biking. There are continuous trails near the lake, first on its south, east and north side, then after the dam the trail continues as Del Dios Gorge Trail and even further as Santa Fe Trail (counter clock wise). San Dieguito River Park org provides good information about the trails.

Spring time the lake was full of wide variety of birds. Once summer came, majority of them were gone. However, I've seen on every visit Hummingbirds and Vultures as well as Snowy Egrets. Usually Roadrunners run on hills near Rancho Bernardo Community Park. Hoping more birds will return late Autumn back to the lake.  Rattlesnakes are a common view there, too.

About 50km (some 30 miles) loop around the Lake with a mountain bike is tough, though trails near the lake are quite flat, they become tougher after Santa Fe when the trail merges to Lusardi Creek Trail and especially to Lusardi Loop Trail. The loop around the lake one can gain total about 750m in vertical (about 2400 ft), basically all in a fairly short distance.




Paddling on Lake Hodges

A moment in shadow

Singletrack trails, my absolute favorite

More shade

Southern trails, Bernardo Mountain on back

A bridge provided by Arnold Schwarzenegger

Crossing a creek

Lake Hodges towards north

Towards south

Trail running

Speed walking

Snowy Egrets

A Hummingbird

'A name to be added' bird

Lots of bunnies

Once you learn it, it'll be easy

Speedy corner

Horse riding trails, too

Long waited shadow

Gliding beautifully


Plants are modest here, it's dry

A Roadrunner, live in action


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  2. There are plans to extend the trail so that it goes under the I-40 bridge across Illinois Bayou and tie into the trail at Orbit Lane, opening access to the public land along the Bayou on the north side of the Interstate. best hydration backpack