San Diego: Iron Mountain via Ellie Lane

Loop 8.3 miles through coastal sage and eucalyptus to views of mountain-ringed beaches and the Pacific Ocean.
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Loop 8.3 miles through coastal sage and eucalyptus to views of mountain-ringed beaches and the Pacific Ocean.

Mapped by Rajeev Jain

Trail Facts

  • Distance: 10.9

Waypoints

IML001

Location: 32.987720489502, -116.97679901123

Head E on Ellie Lane Trail; start ascent into canyon

IML002

Location: 32.990161895752, -116.962097167969

Reach broad face of Table Rock and turn R toward neighboring canyon

IML003

Location: 32.9849815368652, -116.960998535156

Turn L and climb over second saddle; first views over the Ramona Valley and far-off mountains of Cleveland NF

IML004

Location: 32.9845809936523, -116.952499389648

Veer NE and then turn R, heading downhill

IML005

Location: 32.9834403991699, -116.950401306152

Continue downhill through dry streambed

IML006

Location: 32.9776725769043, -116.952941894531

Turn L onto Iron Mountain Summit Trail, more views E through pines

IML007

Location: 32.9759254455566, -116.952033996582

R @ Y, continue around E side of 2,696-ft. Iron Mountain

IML008

Location: 32.9738883972168, -116.952842712402

Path leads over false summit with big red rocks covered in black lichen

IML009

Location: 32.9734077453613, -116.955123901367

Climb rocky, sage-covered terrain

IML010

Location: 32.970703125, -116.955490112305

Cone of Iron Mtn. offers view E over shimmering Pacific; to S, see Barona Valley. Head back to WPT 6 and turn L

IML011

Location: 32.9772758483887, -116.959899902344

L @ 3-way; cross seasonal creek and descend into canyon. Watch for neon-pink Indian warrior plants, which bloom from January-June

IML012

Location: 32.9774703979492, -116.966499328613

Seasonally, watch for yucca blooms and fragrant wild sage returning after 2003 Cedar Fire; pass small pond in .3 mi.

IML013

Location: 32.9823875427246, -116.973976135254

Turn R and head N back to trailhead