Guess who’s back, back again! Hiking guides’ back, tell a friend!! Psst: did you know that today is National Hiking Day? Get out there!!
This time, we headed about 80 miles east of our office and ended up at Lake Cuyamaca near Julian, CA! In need of some fresh air and fall foliage, we ventured out to Julian and completed our favorite hike to date!
The specific trail we planned on completing was the Marty Minshall trail to Stonewall Mine. However, we loved this area so much, we tacked on another trail along the way! The area surrounding these trails is simply stunning, and the change of scenery was so refreshing we decided to hike more than anticipated!
Location of Trailhead
The trailhead for both of the trails we completed, is located at the Stonewall Mine Cultural Preserve in Cuyamaca Rancho State Park. Parking for this trail is available on the side of State Highway 79 near the intersection with Milk Ranch Road. Like our previous hike, there is a fee to pay for this trail. Before lacing up the hiking boots, make sure you head on over to the Lake Cuyamaca Tackle Shop to pay the $10 fee for full trail access!
As always, we doused ourselves in SPF before journeying on! As it was a cooler fall day in Julian, our arms and legs were covered so we applied our Mineral SPF 30 Face Sunscreen Lotion on our face and neck! Pro tip: do NOT forget about protecting your hands!! We brought along our handy dandy Mineral SPF 50 Sport Sunscreen Stick for easy application on our hands! All SPF’d up and we were on our way!!
The Hike Itself
The Marty Minshall trail is a 3.5 mile loop which leads you to the shore of Lake Cuyamaca. With stunning views of the Cuyamaca Rancho State Park, we can see why this trail is so popular! The trail is well-loved by hikers, bikers, and even horseback riders, so make sure you remain on the dirt path and keep a lookout for bikers or riders.
The scenery of this hike is what made it our new favorite! As we hiked our way through the stunning yellow trees, we were led through a beautiful mountain meadow with fall colors galore!
As we meandered our way along the Marty Minshall Trail to the Stonewall Mine, we saw a trail marker for the Los Caballos Trail and decided to make a detour. The Los Caballos Trail connects the Marty Minshall Trail to the Cold Stream Trail and leads you to the Los Caballos Horse Camp. Surrounded by orange and yellow trees, this trail leads you through shaded pine forests for the most stunning views of the open meadows.
After our quick detour for some extra fall vibes, we were back on the trail towards Stonewall Mine and Lake Cuyamaca! Meandering our way across the open mountain meadow, the trail led us toward Lake Cuyamaca and an abandoned mining town! At one point along this trail, you will see signs posted reminding you to have paid the $10 fee for full trail access beyond said point. If you decide to forego this part of the trail, you can continue exploring the State Park, but will not have access to the lake/mine.
Another hike in the books and we are just getting started! We throughouly enjoyed our afternoon in Julian and encourage you to get out there and #gobareoutside with us! Remember to always leave the trail how you found it, and consider donating to the Cuyamaca Rancho State Park Interpretive Organization. If you tried this hike out, we would love to see! Tag us @barerepublic and #gobareoutside on Instagram!