Lake Miramar is an artificial reservoir located in San Diego, California. The trail circumferences the lake shore and offers approximately five miles of lake side views.
Lake Miramar Trail Hiking Guide
Nestled in the affluent community of Scripps Ranch, above Mira Mesa, and next to the large military base, MCAS Miramar lies a fairly large reservoir. The lake, which is man made, completed construction in 1960 and has been supplying San Diego with water ever since. Water coming from distances as far as the Colorado River and far reaches of Northern California via the California Aqueduct, help to keep the parched mouths of San Diegans well watered. When full the lake has a depth of of 114 feet and has a storage capacity of 6,682 feet. The year round water supply help to attract migratory and other coastal birds during the year.
Aside from Lake Miramar being vital to San Diego’s water supply, the area also offers up a variety of outdoor activities. The space includes approximately five miles of paved hiking trails. The paved trails attract many visitors as they are also dog and bike friendly. The lake itself can be used for boating or kayaking activities. Most of the views that Lake Miramar has to offer are of the surrounding Scripps Ranch neighborhood. The location of this lake is nestled in some of the first hills and valleys coming up off of San Diego’s mesas. at an elevation of roughly 700 feet. The lake of obstructing views on the lake’s western side make this a great place to watch a sunset. Views from the area look down on the sprawling San Diego metropolitan, Pacific Ocean, Coronado Islands, and down into coastal Baja California.
Lake Miramar Operating Hours
The lake is open daily from sunrise to sunset. Holiday closures include Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Day. Boats, kayaks, and bikes can be rented from a concession stand on site. From November to March the stand is open Thursday to Sunday from 6:00am to 5:00pm. From April to October rentals are available from Thursday to Sunday from 6:00am to 6:00pm. For more information on concession rentals call 858-527-1722 or by visiting the concession website. For general information about Lake Miramar, visit the City of San Diego website. All fishing or boating activities require a valid permit.
On A Personal Note:
Lake Miramar has very little elevation gain. The paved trails make this a great option for families, beginner hikers, or those where significant elevation gain is not a great option for hikes. The elevation of the lake is one of the high points coming off the mesa’s where the ocean breeze can keep the area cooler until the late summer months.
Do you have any updates to the hiking trail or want to share your hike/pictures? Please leave a comment below.
- Overall Difficulty: 35% 35%
- Overall Views: 55% 55%
Miramar Lake Trail Quick Facts:
- Elevation: 725 feet.
- Elevation Gain: 98 feet.
- Estimated Distance: 5 miles.
- Estimated Time: 1-3 hours.
**The track on my gps got restarted so the total distance isn’t accurate in this picture. The total trail is approximately five miles with very minimal elevation gain.**
Miramar Lake Trail Directions:
Lake Miramar Trial Pictures:
Who Lake Miramar Trail Is For:
Advanced Hikers: Although this is an easy trail for advanced hikers, there’s a certain level of enjoyment about walking around a lake shore. Advanced hikers who enjoy solitude may want to plan on getting there early to avoid crowds. If you need a quick outdoor near a body of water that’s not near a beach, this is a great option.
Expert Hikers: Same.
It’s always a good idea to be aware of what type of hiking level you’re at.
Best Time Of Year To Hike Lake Miramar:
Lake Miramar is generally great to hike year round. The proximity of this location to the coast keeps this area with favorable temperatures throughout the year. The one exception is during the hottest days of the summer. Being that the lake trail is pavement, there’s no shade along the trail. Heat can radiate from the sun and temperatures can be hotter than the surrounding air. During these conditions I recommend hiking Lake Miramar during the early morning hours before the heat, or not at all. It’s always a great idea to check the weather prior to doing any hiking.
Miramar Lake Trail Conditions:
There shouldn’t be any poison oak along the main road. I don’t want to say there is none because there is a possibility near the use trail along the lake trail. Also keep an eye out for rattlesnakes during the warmer months from spring to late fall.