Pets allowed
Not Allowed
Elevation Gain
250.00 ft (76.20 m)
Trail type
1.00 mi (1.61 km)
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

The Ho Chi Minh Trail is a relatively strenuous and rewarding half-mile hike in northern San Diego County. In the 1960s, the surfers who frequented this trail named it after the trail in Vietnam. This hike takes you through sandstone cliffs and along a small creek before it ends at a secluded beach. The trail itself is narrow and crumbling, and it is somewhat of an obstacle course. Toward the beginning of the trail there is a wooden plank that allows you to walk across a small ravine. The trail leads through a narrow slot canyon about halfway down, and footholds have been carved into the sandstone to help with the grade. Shortly afterward you'll find a rope to hold on to as you climb down a rocky slope. The trail ends at a quiet, sandy beach known as Black's Beach. It's a great place to relax and go bird watching at the ocean.

This area has a unique geological makeup comprised of alluvial cliffs and sandy beaches. The sandstone cliffs that follow the coastline are unstable and constantly changing due to wind and water erosion. Because of the precarious nature of sandstone, it's best not to do this hike after a storm.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)




Parking Pass

Not Required


Beautiful views. Trail ends at the beach.


Fairly strenuous. Trail is eroded in places.

Trailhead Elevation

250.00 ft (76.20 m)


Bird watching
Big vistas
Geologically significant


Nearby Lodging + Camping


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