Santee Lakes To Sycamore Canyon

3.20 out of 5
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↑ 700 ft
↓ 700 ft
elevation (ft)

Out & Back
Trail Description
About this trail
This route appears to be primarily used as a connector between the city of Santee and the Sycamore Canyon/Goodan Ranch trails. With the inclusion of the many spurs, and the pleasant singletracks that were reportedly cut after the recent fires, it rivals the majority of SC/GR with the exception of Martha's Grove and the ridge trails.

Please note that there are many no-trespassing signs along the route. According to locals and the guidebook these are not to prevent access, but merely to keep you on the main trails. (*See warning below)

From the trailhead just west of the intersection of Mast and Medina, at the end of the sidewalk, head north paralleling Santee Lakes following the most heavily tracked trails. Just past the powerlines, cross a ravine (may or may not be wet) and continue northward, between the hill and the lakes. Shortly after the water treatment plant at the northernmost lake, the terraing begins to pick up some trees. Continue north either on the main trail (east fork) or the singletrack (west) Please note again the warning below - don't venture East of the lakes...
Continue north until you reach the gate to Sycamore Canyon/Goodan Ranch Total out and back distance to the gate along the main trail is ~11 miles (5.7 o-w)

*Warning - truck trails on the east side of Santee Lakes appear to be off limits. No entry/exit is available short of a vandalized fence, and signs are not friendly. Please avoid the east side of the lake without special permission.
added by XerienGnarly
Trail Features
Trail features
  • Lift Service
  • Drinking Water
  •   Night Riding
  • Pump Track
  • Restrooms
  • Winter Fat Biking
Directions to Trailhead
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Trail Q&A
Rider Questions
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Recommended Trails
Recommended Trails
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Hinesburg Town Forest
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Local Info & Nearby Trails
Trail Check-ins
Trail Check-ins
what's this?
Recent Trail Check-ins     (137 total check-ins)
  Scott V   1 week ago
  Jesus Colis   1 week ago
  Scott V   on Sep 7, 2019
  Jesus Colis   on Jul 10, 2019
  Scott V   on Jun 30, 2019
Photo & Video Gallery (3)
Trail Photos & Videos (3)
Reviews (5)

Granny Gear

October 16, 2016
AmyCave Granny Gear  
Review: Trail seems to be all dug up due to development. Hiked and biked a ways and it just didn't seem to end so we gave up.

Granny Gear

October 15, 2015
beddery Granny Gear  
Review: Fun trail, I was just wondering how you can recommend this trail to everyone seeing that it cuts into Federal property? There is a chance of citation and confiscation of bikes.

Granny Gear

April 11, 2015
scarshin Granny Gear  
Review: Rocks, rollers, climbs, hardpack and loose stuff. Has lots to offer. Consider bike bell for two way traffic in the middle section. Lucked out on my first head on.


July 28, 2011
Review: A fun trail linking Poway to Santee. Some fast and rolling sections with a few rocky parts. Good for night rides.

Similar Trail: Lake Hodges


June 10, 2011
JerryC Gramcounter  
Review: The trail description is accurate. This is an excellent suburban trail network and appears to be heavily used. We rode to the Martha loop, be careful on the descent as it can get technical. These trails can be a good technical challenge for beginners. There are also several sections of loose sands and rocks. The out route is a barely noticeable climb. Return was almost all big chain ring. There are a number spurs that all seem to run parallel. We did find a new trail that went wear through a revine but only followed it a mile or so.

Santee Lakes To Sycamore Canyon MTB Trail 3.20 out of 5 based on 5 ratings. 5 user reviews.
Trail Conditions
Trail Conditions          < / > embed