October 11, 2017
Incredibly beautiful area to ride located in California's peninsular ranges about an hour east of San Diego. From the high points there are grand vistas of the Anza-Borrego desert to the east and northeast, Mexico to the south, and San Diego and the Pacific Ocean to the west. The meadow seems vast and wide open; San Diego's very own big sky country.
Drove up here on a weekday in early Fall. Black oaks were just beginning to turn. The meadow still had water. Cattle were grazing near the big lake. Saw only a few hikers and a couple of mountain bikers. Felt like I had the whole place to myself. Connected to the Big Laguna Trail from Penny Pines (parking available at trailhead, but need to purchase Forest Service Adventure Pass for $5). Skirted west along the lake. At the south end of BLT took Chico Spur to Gatos Spur, a short flow trail/mtb playground with a few jumps and narrow logs to balanceon (both optional), and a few chunky sections. Continued north on BLT to Little Laguna Lake (dry) and the El Prado Campground. Used the El Prado Spur to cut back over to Laguna Meadow and reconnect with Penny Pines. Penny Pines is short but a blast to descend on back to the trailhead.