With the trail closed for Rock Mountain, Derek needed to find a replacement peak. After some discussion, Goat Peak in Poway was added to the Challenge. I had some unexpected free time this afternoon, so I decided to go hike it. I had limited research on this peak. I knew where the trailhead was, and a route, but not a lot more than that. The trail begins at the end of Quiet Valley Lane and follows Poway Creek for about 0.7 miles. I crossed the dry creek bed 5 times before leaving the canyon.
Now the trail changed its character from a gentle stroll to a real workout. Over the next ¼ of a mile, I gained over 400 feet of elevation. The path here is quite eroded and slippery and at times sports ruts down the middle, making footing a bit awkward. Finally, I reached a plateau and found a nice rock to sit on and grab a short breather. It offered a great view back down the canyon. Looking to the east, the actual peak finally came into view.
Soon the trail began working its way up a dry creek where I encountered a few dry waterfalls, some requiring mild scrambling to climb up. So much for doing this hike after some rains… Finally, I left the other creek and the last push to the summit. Throughout the hike, there were portions of the trail built up for mountain bikes, but it was clear they had not been used for some time.
To reach the summit, a little bit of scrambling was required. As I sat and let the breeze cool me off, Mt Woodson stood to the north, and Iron Mountain to the east. I found the register with no problem and added my name.
After soaking in the vistas, I carefully worked my way back down the rocks to the main trail. I knew descending was going to be slow, given the trail conditions, but I was in no hurry. While the trail was easy to follow, you are going to need long pants to avoid some of the overgrowth. Soon I had made it back down the dry creek and the other steep section. It was nice to get another peak crossed off the list, #71!
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.