Torrey Pines State Reserve - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Torrey Pines State Reserve

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Climbing up the steps that took me to first ocean view point Climbing up the steps that took me to first ocean view point
Stopping to do some yoga while I hiked the beach trail. Stopping to do some yoga while I hiked the beach trail.
Following this Beach Trail sign took me straight to the water. Following this Beach Trail sign took me straight to the water.
Pretty view of the ocean from the first viewing point. Pretty view of the ocean from the first viewing point.

SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - Lush, green Torrey Pine trees unique to San Diego. Piercing blue waves that lick the sides of crisp, sandy cliffs. Piercing sunrays that warm your shoulders and face. These are all features of Torrey Pines State Reserve, a gorgeous place where visitors can enjoy scenic hikes and a refreshing swim. The reserve runs between Carmel Valley Road and the Glider Port at Torrey Pines Scenic Drive.

As a native San Diegan, I have been hiking Torrey Pines since I was a little girl. After doing the hike several times, I have become very familiar of what to bring and what to expect on the hike. The hike itself isn’t very difficult because it is only about three miles with a total elevation of 350 ft.

Before starting the hike, there are many things visitors should consider. During the summer it can get hot on the trails, so it is important to wear a lot of sunscreen and comfortable clothing that is light and airy. Running shoes are also great because they are comfortable and perfect on the hike itself. Bringing a water bottle is crucial to ensure hydration throughout the hike.

When starting the hike, it is essential to stay on the trails. Hiking on the designated paths prevents erosion, trampled plants, and frightened animals. It also keeps visitors safe from unstable, dangerous cliffs. Visitors should be sure to follow the parks rules and regulations because they were put in place to protect both the wildlife and the visitors themselves.

Some of these rules state that visitors must throw trash in designated trashcans, not smoke on the trails, and not take anything from the reserve itself such as rocks, pine cones, or flowers.

One of the hiking trails leads visitors down to the beach. This is my favorite trail because I can jump into the ocean after sweating my way around the reserve. It is also a gorgeous trail that leads visitors through a canyon that opens up to steps that lead to the sand. From there, visitors can follow the beach path to the parking lot or continue back up into the cliffs for more trails.

What to expect:

Hike level: easy

This is an extremely popular and well-known hike in San Diego, so there will be a lot of people on the trails. If you are someone that wants peace and quiet, you will not find that on this hike. What you will find though, are some of the prettiest views in San Diego.

It can also be difficult to find parking on crowded days. On days like this, the park will close to additional park goers to prevent overpopulation.

Before or after the hike itself, visitors should check out the Torrey Pines Lodge Museum located at the upper parking lot to see an amazing display of wildlife distinctive to San Diego.

I started the hike at 9:30 a.m. and didn't have any problems with the heat. It was overcast outside when I started the hike, and the sun didn't come out until I finished the hike around 10:30 a.m. The ocean breeze keeps the temperature at a nice, easy temp. 

Dogs and horses are not allowed. 

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