El Capitan Preserve near Lakeside, Hellhole Canyon Preserve in Valley Center, Mt. Gower Preserve near Ramona and Wilderness Gardens in Pala are closed Aug. 1 through Aug. 31. In addition, Agua Caliente Regional Park and Vallecito County Park near Julian are closed all summer; they will reopen Labor Day weekend.
There are nearly 100 other County parks and preserves to explore during the month of August. Follow the switchbacks on the County’s newest trail; catch a coastal breeze while picnicking at Otay Valley Regional Park; go boating at Lake Morena County Park, or attend Wilderness Survival School at San Dieguito County Park.
If you do go out for a hike, be smart about it! Below are some safety tips hikers should consider before hitting the trails:
- Let someone know where you will be and when you plan to return.
- Hike with others, never alone.
- Leave your dog at home for difficult hikes. Even “easy” hikes may be too much for your dog when the air or ground are too hot.
- Take plenty of water to stay hydrated. Our ranger recommends one liter (about a quart) for every two to three miles.
- Wear sunscreen, a hat and sunglasses.
- Take breaks in shade, if possible.
- Take a fully charged mobile phone, map and/or GPS.
- Wear lightweight, light-colored, ventilated clothing.
- Bring along a warm jacket if you plan to stay out after dusk.
- Wear sturdy shoes with traction for slippery rocks.
- Follow all posted safety rules.
- Bring ample food, sunscreen to reapply, a flashlight, first aid kit, multi-purpose tool or knife and a whistle.
- Know your limitations; choose trails that match your level of physical fitness and areas where you are not going to get lost
For additional information on visiting County Parks, visit sdparks.org.