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Los Penasquitos Canyon Preserve


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Nestled between Mira Mesa and Rancho Penasquitos is a patch of wilderness filled with more than 500 species of native plants and 175 species of birds, as well as other wildlife. The area was home to native peoples for thousands of years before it became part of the first land grant in San Diego.

Today Los Penasquitos Canyon Preserve , co-managed by the City and County of San Diego, is comprised of two coastal canyons located less than fifteen minutes from downtown and offers more than six miles of hiking, biking and equestrian trails, underneath old-growth sycamores and California live oaks, beside a fresh water creek and across open grass lands. Click here for a map of the park.

A highlight midway along the trail is a waterfall tumbling over large boulders, the only waterfall of its kind in the San Diego city limits.

Don’t miss the Johnson-Taylor Adobe Ranch House, now a museum. On the weekends, take a tour of the original 1800s adobe ranch house and learn about the Rancho's early days.  Tours are usually conducted on  Saturdays at 11am and Sundays at 1pm.

I-15 Exit Scripps Poway Pkwy/Mercy Road
Follow Mercy Road to dead end. At the staging area, turn right on Black Mountain Road. Turn left at Canyonside Park Drive. Follow to dead end, past the ballfields to dirt road leading to parking lot.

San Diego Treasures Staff:
Videographer: Michael Gerdes
Sound: Roland Lizarondo
Editor: Ron Stein
Music Consultant: Byron La Due
Production Manager: Ena Newell
Producer/Writer/Host: Kathi Diamant 
Music Selection: From the soundtrack of “ The Magnificent Seven ” by Elmer Bernstein 

Watch San Diego Treasures on KPBS-TV. San Diego Treasures offers KPBS viewers a chance to discover one of San Diego’s natural or man-made spaces and places that make our county a special place to live. 

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