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San Onofre Trails

Pocket Mouse Hill, 3/26/08
Pocket Mouse Hill, 3/26/08

On the opposite side of Christianitos Road in the hills you will find a number of trails.  Stop by the booth at San Mateo Campground gate and ask for a copy of "San Mateo Trails at San Onofre State Beach, Backcountry map & information guide". 
 
Pocket Mouse Hill is one of the many trails.  From the hill top you have a good view in almost every direction.
 
Pocket Mouse Hill trailhead is in the back of the Trestles parking lot towards Carl's Jr.

Click any picture on this page for a larger view.

Pocket Mouse Hill Trailhead, 3-26-08
Pocket Mouse Hill trailhead at Trestles Parking Lot

Pocket Mouse Hill Trail, San Onofre State Beach
Pocket Mouse Hill

Take the trail to the left to climb to the hill top (pictures of this trail shown next row below).
 
The trail to the right goes back to Christianitos Road or you could take another smaller very steep path to the top of the hill.

Pocket Mouse Hill Trail, San Onofre State Beach
View from Pocket Mouse Hill, lower trail

View from the trail (turn to the right, shown in the previous picture).

Pocket Mouse Hill Trail, San Onofre State Beach
Another trail off Pocket Mouse, leads back to Trestles parking lot

 

Pocket Mouse Hill, San Onofre State Beach

In the picture above titled "Pocket mouse hill", trail to the left.  Going uphill the trail splits into two trails but both lead to the top of Pocket Mouse Hill.  This is the view looking back toward Trestles parking lot.

Pocket Mouse Hill, San Onofre State Beach

Ok, the sign says "Danger Shooting Area" -- I don't recall reading about this on the trail guide...  (I'm taking this picture while standing in fragments of "clay pigeons" so I'm taking "keep out" seriously). 
 
The trail turns to the right at this point up to the top of the hill.

Pocket Mouse Hill, San Onofre State Beach

Turning right continuing up the hill away from the shooting area quickly...

pkms3-29-08-11.jpg

Looking back the way I came, gives you an idea of the difficulty level of the trail.  The trail curves downhill to the left.

Pocket Mouse Hill, San Onofre State Beach

This hawk flew not far overhead a couple of times.  I am not a bird expert but I believe this is a red-tailed hawk.

The two rows below show the view from the top of Pocket Mouse Hill.  Starting with the view toward the inland direction, ending with the view towards San Clemente, one picture each turn.

Pocket Mouse Hill, San Onofre State Beach
Looking East towards the "shooting area" down the hill

Pocket Mouse Hill, San Onofre State Beach
View of San Mateo Campground from Pocket Mouse Hill

Pocket Mouse Hill, San Onofre State Beach
View of Trestles, the road below is Christianitos, the trail off the left of the road is Panhe Trail

Pocket Mouse Hill, San Onofre State Beach
View of San Clemente

San Onofre State Beach Trails

On the trail guide available at the San Mateo Campground main gate, through the hills on the opposite of Christianitos from the campground are two more main trails, Ancestors' Trail and Peaceful Valley Trail. 
 
Continue on Cristianitos Rd. past San Mateo Campground toward Camp Pendleton.  Along the way to the end of the public road at Camp Pendleton gate, on the left you will see three trail access points which may have closed gates.
 
I inquired at San Mateo Campground about the locked gates, they said if the gates are closed it is because the trail maintenance after the winter storms isn't complete yet. 
 
The first gate was opened, the next two were both closed.  I believe the last gate before Camp Pendleton is the trailhead to access Peaceful Valley and Ancestors' Trails. 

San Onofre State Beach Trails
Heading toward Camp Pendleton on Christianitos, 1st gate, opened, 3/29/08

San Onofre State Beach Trails
Heading toward Camp Pendleton on Christianitos, 2nd gate, closed 3/29/08

San Onofre State Beach Trails
Heading toward Camp Pendleton on Christianitos, 3rd gate, closed 3/29/08