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Lawson Peak

San Diego Metro Area, California

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Lawson Peak

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  • The trail begins on the unmarked Carveacre Road.- Lawson Peak
  • The view begins to open up as the trail rapidly gains elevation.- Lawson Peak
  • The trail is quite rugged and has sections of loose gravel.- Lawson Peak
  • The granite-topped Lawson Peak in the distance.- Lawson Peak
  • Barrett Lake in the distance.- Lawson Peak
  • A closer view of Barrett Lake.- Lawson Peak
  • Gaskill Peak (right) may be reached from Lawson Peak (left), but it will add around 2 miles to the trip.- Lawson Peak
  • An interesting rock formation framing Barrett Lake.- Lawson Peak
  • The last section of the trail is hardly visible through the overgrown chaparral.- Lawson Peak
  • View to the northwest near the summit of Lawson Peak.- Lawson Peak
  • Unique rock formations mark the summit of Lawson Peak.- Lawson Peak
  • A bit of climbing is required to reach the cave and penultimate summit.- Lawson Peak
  • The cave near the summit of Lawson Peak.- Lawson Peak
  • View from a ledge which is accessible through the cave.- Lawson Peak
  • View to the west from the summit of Lawson Peak.- Lawson Peak
  • View to the south from the summit of Lawson Peak.- Lawson Peak
  • View of Wisecarver Trail from Lawson Peak.- Lawson Peak
  • View to the southeast from Lawson Peak.- Lawson Peak
  • View from the cave on the northwestern face of Lawson Peak.- Lawson Peak
  • View to the north from the summit of Lawson Peak.- Lawson Peak
Overview + Weather
Pros: 
Beautiful views. Bouldering. Cave access.
Cons: 
Extreme summer temperatures. Trail not marked well.
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Region:
San Diego Metro Area, CA
Congestion: 
Low
Pets allowed: 
No
Highest point: 
3,630.00 ft (1,106.42 m)
Year round: 
Yes
Parking Pass: 
National or state forest pass
Permit required: 
No
Preferable Season(s):
Winter, Spring, Fall
Total Distance: 
5.00 mi (8.05 km)
Total elevation gain: 
1,600.00 ft (487.68 m)
Trail type: 
There-and-back
Trailhead Elevation: 
2,180.00 ft (664.46 m)
Typically multi-day: 
No
Current Local Weather:
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Hike Description

Hike Description

Pro Contributor

Nestled in the southwestern corner of Cleveland National Forest, Lawson Peak is one of three immense granite-topped peaks that tower above the outskirts of San Diego. Although Lyons Peak is currently not legally accessible, Gaskill Peak may be reached from Lawson Peak by adding 2 extra miles to the trip.

The trail begins on the unmarked Carveacre Road, located at mile marker 13.0 on Lyons Valley Road. For the first 2 miles, the trail rapidly gains elevation while gorgeous views of the Pine Creek Wilderness begin to open up in the northeast and of Barrett Lake in the southeast. The last quarter mile requires some bouldering up the rugged northeastern face of the mountain. Though the trail is not well-marked, there are ample paths with adequate footholds. Just below the summit on the western face is a 20-foot vertical crevice that leads to a cave. Two ropes have been secured for support, and there are plenty of handholds and footholds; nevertheless climbers should exercise caution. The cave leads to a ledge with views to the east, and a nearby path reaches the uppermost boulders of Lawson Peak. The dramatic, wind-swept summit features 360-degree views of the surrounding mountains and Lawson Valley, and on a clear day views extend all the way to the Pacific Ocean.

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Location + Directions

Location + Directions

Nearby Camping + Lodging

(1 within a 30 mile radius)

Nearby Adventures

(32 within a 30 mile radius)

Adventure Community

Adventure Community

Who Wants To Do It
3 Members
Who's Done It
1 Members
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70 Adventures Explored
54 Adventures Published

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