Florida Canyon

With my wife and daughter away in Arkansas, I took advantage of that and decided to hike Florida Canyon in Balboa Park. This is all part of my effort to explore more of our urban hikes in San Diego. Somehow, I found parking near the Spanish Village on a Sunday. I grabbed my gear and headed to the pedestrian bridge near the fountain. I took a quick look around the Inez Grant Parker Memorial Rose Garden before heading through the Desert Garden and into the trail. The paved trail works its way down Florida Canyon and the road. I crossed over Florida Road and re-joined the trail.

I headed east until I reached a junction that took me up a draw toward the top of the mesa. The trail was moderately busy, walkers, runners, and mountain bikers were all out enjoying the nice spring day. Once on the mesa, I looped around until I reached the trail that would take me back down another draw to rejoin the trail that parallels the road. I then crossed Florida Drive and began hiking back up the switchbacks toward the start. Partway up, I spotted two hikers heading down with packs larger than one would need for this simple trail. I asked if they were training for something, and they replied they were off to Spain shortly to hike the Camino de Santiago. We chatted a bit about their upcoming adventure before parting ways. I reached the cactus garden and crossed back over Park Boulevard. Now, cars were circling for a parking spot. I tossed my gear in and headed home. There is another section of the canyon I plan to come back to and explore at a later date.

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, Central Coast, 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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