A trip to Palomar Mountain State Park


We had a wonderful morning of hiking at Palomar Mountain State Park.  There is one entrance to the park with a self-pay station.  We made a right to head toward the Doane Campground.  It is about a five-minute drive to the day use parking lot.  The lot has a clear view of the Palomar Outdoor Center.  Next to the lot, there are restrooms.  It is a very short walk to Doane Pond (above), which is very pretty.  

We wanted to hike the Weir Trail.  There is a sign for the trail head near the restrooms.  The marker says the hike is "12 miles".  It is actually 1.2 miles.  The trail head includes access to several other trails.  The hardest part of the trail is actually a steepish gully next to the road.  It is much easier to walk down the road you drive up on and locate the start of the trail on the right-hand side of the road, just before the road bridge over the large drainage culvert.  

The Weir Trail is very shaded and you are always within view of the Doane Creek.  There are a few places where you have to cross the creek, including walking across a 2X4 board that serves as a bridge.  It is fairly flat, broad and easy to follow trail.

We saw so many Steller's Jays.  These large raucous birds have vivid blue plumage with dark, crested heads.  We also saw a deer, squirrels and many other birds.  

Toward the end of the trail, there is a marker for the "historic site".  The trail is narrower and there were lots of gnats!

The State Park is a beautiful place to visit!  There are lots of short hikes that can be combined to make a long hike.  Our 3.4 round trip was perfect for us.  The trails are well marked and there are shady trails and trails that traverse open sunny meadows.  

                                                        Dense woods with some fall color
                                                        Steller's jay



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