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  < Back to Table Of Contents  < Back to Topic: Adventure, Discovery, Scenic & Interesting

article number 632
article date 01-31-2017
copyright 2017 by Author else SaltOfAmerica
Southern California Winter Hiking Part 2, Above the Clouds - Palomar Mountain, Doane Valley
by Stu Moment
   

EDITOR’S NOTE: All photos with the SaltOfAmerica.com logo (those larger images opened by clicking the button below the photo) may be reposted without further permissions. This policy is for promotional reasons.

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60 miles northwest of San Diego, next to Palomar Observatory, you’ll find Palomar Mountain State Park. It has a good four days of trail variet. Tag along while we walk Doane Valley trails with heavily wooded areas and a beautiful meadow with a great mountain view.

Coming from any direction on Interstate 15 you’ll have at least 15 miles of 2 lane roads to drive. Allow for extra driving time and enjoy them.

   

We will drive above these clouds.

   
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If you ride a motorcycle, you can enjoy twisting roads.

   
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The yellow sign on the right indicates a cow crossing. Hope they look both ways for motorcycles.

   
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Rising to the level of the clouds.

   
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Next, a view from above the level of the clouds.

   
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Doane Valley is just one of the areas of Palomar Mountain State Park. At Doane Valley there are a number of paths. We will take a path to the northwest . . . Weir Trail.

   
   

No bikes allowed . . . no dogs allowed?

   

Heading up the path we see one of many downed trees. There is a rise to the left and an nice sounding creek to the right.

   

The next tree trunk crosses the creek.

   

Many trees rise tall. Can’t get the whole picture with a normal camera view . . .

   

. . . so a vertical panoramic view follows.

   
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Can’t believe that woodpeckers can create such a perfect pattern.

   

As the path continues to rise, we get closer to the origin of the creek.

   

As we rise to the grassy areas the creek is still just wide enough to get your feet wet.

   

We use the board to cross the creek.

   

Never heard of a weir dam before this trip . . . here is the structure associated with it.

   
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Continuing northwest we find one of nature’s art forms.

   
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Still rising . . . well beyond the creek, the trees grow more sparse. The experience on this part of the path is excellent . . . pictures don’t do it justice.

   
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Here is the northwest end of the path. Meadows with nice mountain views follow.

   
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We now take the northern "French Valley Trail" back. Interesting tree? . . .

   
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. . . and an even more interesting tree trunk.

   
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In closing, Palomar Mountain State Park offers very pleasant winter hikes . . . and of course, on another day a visit to Palomar Observatory will give you celestial entertainment.

Before we close, here are some of the signs seen at the beginning of the hiking paths.

Did you know? "Palomar" means "pigeon roost" in Spanish. I didn’t.

   
   

And another "Did you know?" . . . Yes, I do know this one! I recreate with, what some people term, "turkeys" . . . they can be wild and the males are much showier.

   

Finally, a few things to avoid.

   
   
   
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