Twin Peaks – Peak #39 – Hiking in the Heart of Poway

Twin Peaks from the trail

Twin Peaks from the trail

Elevation: 1,306′
Miles: ~2.4


I only had a couple of hours and I drive by this peak all the time. I’ve been wondering what it’s like at the top, so I squeezed this hike in.

I parked in a neighborhood and was greeting with a sign asking dog owners to clean up after their pets. Right under the sign was a fairly fresh pile. Ironic.

This is a pretty straightforward hike, but the trail to the summit could be pretty easy to miss. It has all the signs of a suburban hike with dog and horse droppings as well as its lion’s share of graffiti. Actually, this was the most graffiti I’ve seen on a trail before. The tagger covered almost every large rock in one particular area, which is pretty disappointing.

Trailhead to Twin Peaks in Poway

Trailhead to Twin Peaks in Poway

Chimney Rock Open Space Reserve Sign

Chimney Rock Open Space Reserve Sign

Starting the hike you pass a sign reading Chimney Rock Open Space Reserve. I did a search for the reserve online and found nothing about it and I don’t see it on any maps. I know the adjacent upscale neighborhood is called Chimney Rock and can only assume it was named after the subdivision.

I hiked along  a pretty wide dirt road that roughly followed the power lines. Once you start ascending the mountain, it turns into a wash-like trail that climbs steeply. That is when I started to see the graffiti.

Mustard along the Trail to Twin Peaks in Poway

Mustard along the Trail to Twin Peaks in Poway

The Red Earth of North San Diego on the way to Twin Peaks in Poway

The Red Earth of North San Diego on the way to Twin Peaks in Poway

Tagger Ugliness

Tagger Ugliness

I scrambled to the top and enjoyed the views of Poway and beyond. It was a pretty clear day and I could see many peaks that I have summited before. It wasn’t long before I had to start descending. This was one of those hikes where I couldn’t dilly-dally. I had things to do after lunch.

View from the top of Twin Peaks in Poway

View from the top of Twin Peaks in Poway

This is one of those great hikes that you can squeeze in if you are looking for a pretty decent view with some moderate elevation gain without too much distance.

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  1. says

    Nice summary and great views! That is sad about the tagging though. I really don’t understand why anyone would tag on a hiking trail!?! I feel fortunate that I haven’t run across that on the trails up in OC yet.

    The video overview is a nice touch, and conveys a lot of information in a short amount of time.

  2. says

    That graffiti is beautiful. You may see it as an act of vandalism but it is a outcry from the children of our little “utopia” also known as poway. Sure it is pretty tasteless to put in nature, but art is art. Listen to these messages from the people.

    Give Love,

    WOOLY :)

  3. says

    While I appreciate art likely more than most, I still see this as vandalism and a self-centered act of inconsideration. Paint on a canvas or at several walls throughout the county that are tagging approved. Don’t visit nature and deface it as an outcry. Poway is one of the most affluent and has one the the best school districts in the country.

    They are not messages from the people, they are acts of vandalism likely from the same people whose sense of ethics allows them to leave beer bottles and cans in the bushes.

    I hope they find another avenue for their outcry and angst.

  4. Ferdinand says

    I agree, art is art. I know this, because I’m an artist. But, vandalism is vandalism, also. And respect, is respect. Hikers should not have to go to these beautiful destinations and be bothered by “art” from youths with uncontrolled-hormone issues. Young people should expend their energy not just in creative stuff just to be creative, that’s pointless. creativity should also be constructive.

  5. Kim says

    I have lived in the neighborhood below the peak for the past 8 years…One day I will make it up the peaks :-).

  6. says

    Did this one last Saturday; nice and easy. Beautiful morning too, finally got to see some sun instead of fog. I didn’t see a whole lot of “art” though. I think a lot of it has been painted over.


  7. says

    Thanks for the posting on this hike. Made it up this morning in the heat, and guess what, there was dog poop at the trailhead. There was some graffiti on rocks but not too bad. The trail to the summit is not marked, so I’m sure I took the long way up and quick way down. Need to do this hike again when it is much cooler.

  8. AJ says

    Just completed this hike. There are several approaches to the trails that will take you to the top. Some of them are moderate to strenuous at certain points and more direct. Be careful about deadend side trails. With my 8yr daughter and starting out from Silverset Park, I took the longer trail around the west side of the peaks. Most of the graffiti has been covered over. Very light traffic, just only saw three other people on the trails.

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