Lawson Peak

Peak Name: Lawson Peak
Distance: 4.75 miles (8.75 miles)
Date: December 31, 2017
Summit: 3,610 feet

The final summits for 2017 were the duo of Lawson and Gaskill peaks. Ted and I drove out past Jamul to the trailhead just off Lyons Valley Road.

The trail follows Carvacre Road for about 1.9 miles, gaining about 1,000 feet of elevation. The road is somewhat rutted, so you do have to watch your footing some. The peak is not initially visible, but will soon loom before you as the road works it way up.

As we drew closer to the peak, we passed a massive granite outcropping near the junction with Wisecraver road. Here is where the real effort begins to reach the summit. A nice trail begins the steep ascent through the brush and boulders until we reached the base of the real challenge of Lawson peak.

Circling around to the north-west side, we found the 20-foot high chute that we needed to climb. We carefully tested the rope and work our way up into the cave at the top.

We worked our way through the small cave to arrive near the summit.

From there, we scrambled to the top.

There we were rewarded sweeping views, Gaskill to the north, Lyons peak to the south.

I checked in with the family and my daughter was feeling under the weather, so I needed to head home. So, Gaskill was going to have to wait for another day. We carefully worked ourselves back down the chute and back to the main road. Soon we were back at the car, with time to shower and rest up before our New Years’ Eve celebrations.


I am an avid peak bagger, sometimes backpacker, and former sea-kayaker living in San Diego. In 2019, I became the third person to complete the San Diego 100 Peak Challenge. Not stopping with that accomplishment, I set my sights on the harder San Diego Sierra Club 100 Peak list, which I completed in 2021. In addition, I have conquered several Six-Pack of Peaks challenges (SoCal, San Diego, and Arizona-Winter). Beyond attempting the San Diego Sierra Club 100 Peak list a second time, I am looking forward to exploring new summits and new adventures across the southwest. 

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