Black Mountain Road

Cleveland National Forest, California

Distance7.0mi
Elevation Gain2,855ft
Trailhead Elevation1,645ft
Top3,510ft
Elevation Min/Max987/3510ft
Elevation Start/End1645/1645ft

Black Mountain Road

Black Mountain Road is a hiking, biking, and horse trail in San Diego County, California. It is within Cleveland National Forest. It is 7.0 miles long and begins at 1,645 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is 12.3 miles with a total elevation gain of 2,855 feet. This trail connects with the following: Upper Santa Ysabel Road.

Black Mountain Road Professional Reviews and Guides

"Spectacular 360-degree vista from the 4,051-foot summit of Black Mountain. The Forest service has temporarily locked a gate well below the summit due to “resource damage” by motor vehicles. You will need a National Forest Adventure Pass to park and hike to the summit."

"San Diego County’s “big” Black Mountain (not the smaller one looming above Rancho Penasquitos) rises gently to an elevation of 4051 feet outside Ramona. A fire lookout tower once stood on Black Mountain’s summit, taking full advantage of a panoramic—and certainly unique—vista furnished by the mountain’s strategic central location within the county. Hikers, bikers, runners, equestrians, and sometimes four-wheel drivers have public access to Black Mountain’s summit via a winding fire road up the southwest flank—though motorized vehicles never get closer than about 1 mile from the top."

Black Mountain Road Reviews

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5/28/2018
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9/17/2016
We did this trail today. It was a beautiful day and we saw two jeeps and the park ranger coming down when we were going up. Good news the top gate to the summit is OPEN! So we went all the way to the top. The trail is a friendly one, everything from easy to an optional moderate shortcut steep climb for which yo9u need a high approach and departure angle. I dont have that yet so my bumper would hit the rocks when approaching the little climb. Ill try it when i swap out my front bumper. Other than that the trail is well maintained. I have the gpx file but dont know why Trails.com hasnt fixed the upload issue still....
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11/9/2013
This is a fun, tight trail with great views and a few technical spots. I would say 4WD would be most definitely needed to get all the way to the top, especially if it's wet. If the gate is closed to the summit, there is a go around trail that has been pretty rutted out. I had to lock my rear up and use A-Trac in my FJ to get over the spine and back on the trail, and same thing coming back down. That was by far the most technical part of the trail. Everything else was easy...
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6/30/2013
A great, if technically easy trail. Great views from multiple locations, but the top is spectacular, with 360 degree views. The gate near the top is closed, but there's a well trodden bypass trail a few hundred feet before it.
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10/23/2010
After a rain, some mud puddles and a slippery slope indeed. 4wd needed to get up a few muddy hills, otherwise 2wd OK.
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8/14/2006
Nice enjoyable trail. Some moderate sections. Not too difficult. Great views all around. Gates are open all the way to the summit. No need to hike. Breathtaking 360 view from the summit.
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Black Mountain Road Photos

Trail Information

Cleveland National Forest
Nearby City
Cleveland National Forest
Parks
Dog-friendly
Accessibility
Cleveland National Forest, Palomar Ranger District
Palomar Ranger District
Local Contacts
Cleveland National Forest
USGS Mesa Grande
Local Maps

Activity Feed

Aug 2018