A short 20 minute drive over the Coronado Bridge will bring you to a hikers’ paradise, Mother Miguel Mountain, where you can find the path to what some call the “Rock House” on the peak with an American Flag and POW Flag blowing in the wind.
With an immediate challenging incline to its peak, you will get your heart rate going right from the start, and you will soon be rewarded with stunning views of Coronado, Sweetwater Reservoir, Otay Lakes and North County. Many folks hike straight up to the top and return the way they came to get a short but steep 2.5 mile roundtrip hike or bike (this is also a very popular mountain biking area).
But to really enjoy all the landscape has to offer, follow the entire hike for 5.6 miles around the peak and down to Sweetwater Reservoir. While you may be intimidated to venture on after a start that is essentially straight up the mountain, the path back is much less challenging and offers equally stunning views, making it well worth the extra miles.
Spring-time is the perfect time to enjoy the fragrant hike and beauty the wildflowers add to the landscape. Add to that the green rolling hills with tall grasses that are a product of the greater than average rainfall we had and you can once again feel like you’ve been transported out of San Diego to a far off land.
The trailhead for the hike begins at the edge of Mount San Miguel Park in Chula Vista. Dogs are allowed on the trail but must be leashed. As you make your way around the loop of the mountain to Sweetwater Reservoir overlook, you will find a covered picnic table where you can enjoy a snack or a packed lunch while you rest. When you head back to complete the loop you will find yourself on a path with tall flowers and plants that leads you to a creek you will cross and then back up over a dirt path that returns you to Mount San Miguel Park.
I recommend bringing lots of water for you and your dog if you bring one, as well as sunscreen and a hat now that we are enjoying more sunny weather. And don’t forget your camera as the views are beautiful and you will want to remember this hike.