Category Archives: Trails

Put on those hiking boots, air up your tires, saddle up your horses

Put on those hiking boots, air up your tires, saddle up your horses

City to celebrate 26th annual San Marcos Trails Day

Lace up your hiking boots, air up your bike tires, saddle up your horses and join the City of San Marcos in celebrating the 26th annual San Marcos Trails Day on Saturday, March 4 from 9 am to 1 pm.

Hike participation is free and will begin at 9 am; hikers can start signing in at 8 am. Hikers, mountain bikers and walkers will meet at Lakeview Park/Discovery Lake, 650 Foxhall Drive. The staging area will feature free live music, food and giveaways. Equestrian riders will meet at the Ridgeline Trailhead, 102 San Elijo Road.

“Trails day is a celebration of the outdoors and in San Marcos we have something for everyone,” said Community Services Director Buck Martin. “With more than 63 miles of trail connecting to the entire region, San Marcos offers an extensive trail network for the community to discover.”

An easy two-mile hike will visit Discovery Lake and the Discovery Creek trails. A more challenging seven-mile hike will explore the trails that lead to Double Peak Park. Mountain biking enthusiasts are encouraged to bring bikes and enjoy the ride.

“Adventures are meant to be shared and this event is a great opportunity to meet new people in your community and share a fun experience on a local trail,” said Martin.

An adult must accompany all minors. Sturdy walking shoes are recommended; bring water, sunscreen and trail snacks. Dogs must be on a maximum six-foot leash at all times. The hike is subject to cancellation in the event of rain.

Event participants are encouraged to share hiking adventures on Instagram by using the hashtag #DiscoverSanMarcos and #HikeHappySM. The winner for best picture will be announced on Wednesday, April 19.

For more information on outdoor adventures or the city’s trails, please visit or call (760) 744-9000, ext. 3535.

Mountain lion sighting in San Elijo Hills


Mountain lion sighting at 4:30 a.m. crossing to the north at San Elijo Road. About half a mile east from the intersection of Double Peak Drive and San Elijo Road. Location and report from San Elijo Life reader.

Read more about Mountain Lions and Safety here:

San Elijo Hills Double Peak Challenge

DPC Logo_SEH_v2

Double Peak Challenge is a celebration of outdoor recreation like no other, where trail runners will experience unparalleled beauty from atop North County’s highest point.

Off-road racers will set out from San Elijo Hills Neighborhood Park and begin their 1,176 foot gain up to Double Peak’s summit at 1,558 feet above sea level, winding along beautiful hillside trails with amazing views.

Not up for the full 10K? No worries! Double Peak Challenge also offers a shorter 2-mile course as well as a Trail Tot for kids.
Race proceeds will benefit the San Marcos community through two important non-profit organizations: Friends of San Marcos Parks & Recreation and The San Marcos Promise.
The Friends of San Marcos Park & Recreation invests in events, programs, parks and facilities to enhance the quality of life in the City of San Marcos.
The San Marcos Promise provides students in the San Marcos Unified School District with a path to prosperity by providing scholarships and career guidance to inspire academic achievement and post-secondary educational opportunities.

Spring brings warm temps and scaly critters in San Marcos


The City of San Marcos – Shared this good advice about rattlesnake season-

As springtime brings warmer temperatures, more fury and scaly creatures have begun appearing in our yards and parks.

With all sorts of wildlife emerging in the spring, April and May mark the start of rattlesnake season in San Diego County. Recent reports have described increased snake sightings. As the reptiles come out of hibernation, it is not uncommon to spot them locally, though bites are rare. Most sightings are likely to happen between now and October.

“Snakes are most likely venturing out in search of food and to soak up the sun,” said San Marcos Park Ranger Ron Vinluan. “People think they’re going to chase you—that isn’t so. They don’t want anything to do with us.”

If you encounter one of the five varieties of rattlesnakes found in the county, give it space. Calmly back away from it, leave it alone and let it go on its way, Vinluan continued.

To avoid encounters with rattlesnakes, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife suggests these safety steps that can be taken to reduce the likelihood of startling a rattlesnake:

  • Never go barefoot or wear sandals when hiking. Wear sturdy hiking boots with loose-fitting long pants to protect feet and ankles.
  • Stay on paths and trails, avoiding tall grass, weeds and brush where snakes may hide.
  • Keep your dog on leash while hiking and be aware of what your dog is doing at all times.
  • Make sure you can see where you are reaching and that you can see ahead of you. Look for concealed snakes before picking up rocks, sticks or wood.
  • Be careful when stepping over doorsteps as snakes like to crawl along the edge of buildings where they are protected on one side.
  • Never hike alone. Always have someone with you who can assist in an emergency.
  • Teach children early to respect snakes and to leave them alone. Children are naturally curious and will pick up snakes.

If bitten or you feel a snake or other animal is dangerous, call 911 immediately. For more information about rattlesnakes in California, visit

For more information about San Marcos parks, trails and outdoor adventures, contact San Marcos Community Services at (760) 744-9000.

Announcements and upcoming events from The San Elijo Hills Community Association (HOA)

San Elijo Hills

Following is a list of important announcements and upcoming events from The San Elijo Hills Community Association (HOA:

Spring Fling/Pirate Party – (May 16th)

Shiver me timbers and batten down the hatches! San Elijo Hills is excited to invite all our mateys to come celebrate spring with us, pirate-style, on Saturday, May 16th at Hilltop Field of San Elijo Park from Noon – 3:00 p.m.

Activities include:
Pirate themed games, events & craft stations
Treasure hunt
Obstacle course & bounce houses
Carnival themed concessions including popcorn and cotton candy
And more fun surprises!

We hope to see you there!

If you have questions please feel free to contact Ted Tuleck at

Trails Cleanup Day Recap

Despite it being cold, gray, and windy, 70 volunteers joined us for the trail clean up day.  Volunteers collected 112 pounds of trash and 30 pounds of recyclables. We collected half the trash we did from the September event. We hope this is, in part, due to the awareness these events bring to our trails. Thank you all for your continued support in helping us promote these events. Keep an eye out for the next one!

Community Gardens

Spring has sprung here in San Elijo Hills! There are still a few spaces available in our Calistoga community garden for rent! Participating in the garden is a great way to work on your green thumb and witness the fruits of your labor as your seedlings begin to sprout! If you are interested in reserving one of the planters, please contact Ted Tuleck at The yearly lease fee is $50.00 (plus a $25.00 refundable key deposit) and the planter is yours until March 31, 2016.

Memorial Day Closure

The visitor’s center will be closed on Monday, May 25th as we observe Memorial Day. We will re-open regular hours Tuesday, May 26th, 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Most city and government buildings will be closed as well so please check ahead of time if you have business to conduct on that day. Have a safe and fun holiday!

Open House Sign Policy

The San Elijo Hills Community Association has a very specific sign policy in place regarding Open House signs in the community implemented to keep our community beautiful! The San Elijo Hills Community Association’s governing documents prohibit the display of any non-Association signs in the Common Area. The intent of the San Elijo Hills Open House Sign Policy is to (1) provide an acceptable means for homeowners to market homes for sale within the community; (2) reduce the number of open house signs used in the community; and (3) discourage the ‘alternative’ means of signage that have been used in the past (sign spinners, signs on cars, etc).

It is your responsibility as the homeowner to notify your agent of the policy prior to putting out their signage. If it does not follow the guidelines, it will be removed and disposed of. The Open House Policy can be found on our website for your convenience. Thank you for your anticipated cooperation.

Barking Dogs

Please be considerate of your neighbors in respect to barking and noisy dogs. Please do not leave your dogs unattended, outside for long periods of time.

Disturbing the peace is prohibited under San Marcos code 6.24.140. No person shall own or harbor an animal in such a manner that the peace or quiet of the public is unreasonably disturbed. The keeping or maintenance, or the permitting to be kept or maintained, on any premises owned, occupied or controlled by any person of any animal or fowl which, by any frequent or long continued noise, shall cause unreasonable annoyance or discomfort to any person of normal sensitivity in the vicinity, shall constitute a violation of this section; provided, however, that nothing contained herein shall be construed to apply to reasonable noises emanating from legally operated veterinary hospitals, humane societies, animal shelters, farm and/or agricultural facilities, or areas where keeping of animals or fowls are permitted. Any person who violates any provision of this Section is guilty of a misdemeanor.

The City of San Marcos contracts animal control services with the Escondido Humane Society. For questions, please call (760) 888-BARK between 10 am and 6 pm, seven days a week or visit

*This website – San Elijo Life is independent from the developer San Elijo Hills Development Company and the San Elijo Hills Community Association (HOA). The HOA updates are provided as a service to our readership. …Enjoy Life in The Hills.

San Marcos Trails Damaged In Cocos Fire Reopened | KPBS

Cocos Fire Burn Recovery

San Marcos Trails Damaged In Cocos Fire Reopened

The hills above San Marcos, showing the trails on the areas burned by last years’ Cocos fire, March 6 2015.

Over the weekend, San Marcos celebrated the reopening of eight miles of trails that were damaged during the Cocos fire last May.

Ron Vinluan, a San Marcos park ranger, said much of the damage to the trails in the hills between San Marcos and the community of San Elijo Hills was caused by bulldozers’ efforts to suppress the flames.

In the last few months, workers have laid down decomposed granite, replaced wooden fences burned by the fires and planted oak saplings where chaparral was destroyed. READ MORE via San Marcos Trails Damaged In Cocos Fire Reopened | KPBS.

*** The Ridgeline Trail portion of the repairs was performed by the San Elijo Hills Community Association (HOA) and CalFire, and the San Marcos Fire Department, saving the residents of San Elijo Hills Community Association over $100,000. The Ridgeline trail is maintained by The San Elijo Hills Community Association.