Noble Canyon is, by far, one of our favorite trail runs so far! At first we were both warned and worried that it would be 7 miles up and 7 miles down. Our thoughts went straight to a steep and long-drawn incline. However, it ended up just being rolling hills with enough downhills to make up for the uphills, anddddd a lot of fun. The Noble Canyon Trail also links up with the Big Laguna Trail/PCT/Mount Garnet Peak (where we camped together earlier this year).
We accidentally hit a few wrong turns, and didn’t know exactly how far we were supposed to go. With a little help from Google Maps, we found our way back on the path. At one wrong turn we encountered these hunters, off the beaten path, hanging a dead carcass upside down. As the trail ended we realized we went the wrong direction. Our only choice was to run back past them. As we ran by their lifted truck playing eerily old music, I could only envision getting shot down, dragged back to their camp, and hung upside down. Kind of like a scary movie/True Detective, or some type of demented vision!!!
We enjoyed the diverse scenery, from alpine meadows to oak forests and dry desert. The trail was well-mainted and but rocky and super fun in some areas. Funny enough, the week after we ran here it rained enough and was cold enough for snow to form!
I think Elisa and I will both consider this as “the” run of the year. And we’ll definitely have to go back, and maybe experience it from the Upper Trailhead.
Entrance: Lower Noble Trailhead, Pine Valley, CA 91962. From San Diego, take I-8 east to the off ramp for Pine Valley. Exit the highway and turn left. Travel north for .3 miles to Old Highway 80. Turn left onto Old Highway 80 and travel about 1.2 miles to Pine Creek Road. Turn sharply right onto Pine Creek Road and travel 1.6 miles to the trailhead parking on the right.
Route: Follow the trail and try not to get lost!
Miles: ~14.5 miles out-and-back