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Breaking In Your Hiking Boots In San Diego
Having grown up in San Diego, I am amazed at how packed and hectic it has become. Hiking for few hours gives you a chance to enjoy the area without the rat race element.

It is Friday afternoon and you are sitting in rush hour traffic on I-5 going north, I-8 going east or one of the other lovely commutes. You have time on your hands, so you start day dreaming. You start wondering if it was always this busy in San Diego? Perhaps it is even time to think of relocating? Easy my friend, a few hours in your hiking boots will renew your faith in our politically corrupt, expensive slice of paradise.

The first of the treks worth your time is the beach hike. It is relaxing, easy and will remind you why it is great to live in San Diego. You can start and stop just about anywhere. A personal favorite is to head north starting at the beach in front of restaurant row in Cardiff. Depending on how far you want to go, you can just cruise up past Swami's through Encinitas and up into relaxing Leucadia. The really great thing is you can just pop up off the beach and take in lunch on a patio whenever you feel like it.

If you are looking more for a hiker's hike, there are plenty to fit the bill. A trip up the San Diego River, particularly in spring, is candy for the eyes. No, I am not talking about the section of the river down in the city. Instead, we are looking at the area out by Ramona. This is a 10 mile hike that takes 10 hours or so. It begins at the Inaja Picnic Area or Ramona Oaks Road on the other end. The hike is 10 miles one way, so you either need to have two cars or turn around at some point. Regardless, you will see waterfalls, hike through canyons, groves of oaks, granite grottos and do some boulder hopping. You will have to exert yourself on this trail, so be warned.

To the east of Poway is one of the more popular hikes in San Diego - Mount Woodson Trail. There is a short version that goes up the mountain, but I am talking about the 4.5 mile version that goes beyond it. Regardless, the hike is picturesque, close to much of north country and a favorite of hikers that like to do a little rock climbing given the boulders on the mountain. The best place to start is at the southwest edge of parking and picnic area at Lake Poway. There is a trail head that will take you to a junction just beyond Warren Canyon. The trail starts here and is marked with a sign. If you can't find it, just ask as it is very well known. It can get brutally hot in the summer, so make sure you have water.

San Diego is a great place to live even thought it is crowded and expensive. Take a few hours to explore the beauty and you will be ready to handle the rush hour on Monday morning.
About the Author
Rick Chapo is with Nomad Journals - makers of travel journals to preserve your travel experiences.
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