Orosco Ridge P500
Peak 1,952ft P300

Mon, Apr 18, 2022
Etymology
Story Photos / Slideshow Map GPX Profiles: 1 2

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I spent the morning with my wife and mother-in-law, helping with some estate planning efforts and other things. In the afternoon I had time for a few hikes that I found enjoyable. Both are located in the Cleveland National Forest about five miles north of Ramona.

Orosco Ridge

PB has a number of ascents listed for this one, almost all of them involve 10mi or more of hiking. I wasn't planning on doing this one, but was pleasantly surprised to find the Orosco Truck Trail off Pamo Rd open for business. I was able to drive the Jeep to within just over a mile of the summit on its north side. A heavy gate here blocks further vehicle access to the south. I walked the remaining portion of road before it turns west and makes a steep descent to Boden Canyon. A decent use trail can be found taking one all the way to the summit with no need for bushwhacking through the heavy chapparal that covers the mountains here. There are some boulders at the summit forming the highpoint with open views in most directions. A register left in 2020 was looking battered from exposure to water and mold. The most recent visitor had been the previous summer. I managed to do the roundtrip hiking portion in an hour and a quarter, giving me time to do the original summit in the area that I had planned.

Peak 1,952ft

This one is located less than two miles southeast of Orosco Ridge, across Santa Ysabel Creek. I drove back down the Forest Road to the creek and started from a locked gate found there, initially following the good dirt road. This one would be a bit more involved, about 2mi each way with over 1,000ft of gain. Michael Sullivan has a good description of this hike on PB. I followed his route on the way up. The faint use trail is impossible to spot from below, so you have to get onto the proper ridge before it will become easier to find. It's overgrown but still works, leading up and over Pt. 1,424ft where it meets the mountain bike trail described by Michael. One of the local residents has put some work into this, clearing brush, building jumps, etc. There are various rusty tools found in several caches, suggesting the work of more than one enterprising youngster (Dad might be wondering where his tools went). The trail continues all the way to the summit (and then places heading south). Granite boulders provide views in all directions. It took about 50min to make my way to the summit, about the same going down. Rather than go back over Pt. 1,424ft, I followed the bike track down to the creek. It's a longer route, but less brushy. It was close to 5p when I finished up and time to head back to Rancho Bernardo...

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