Love Valley Trail features a short, but very scenic and pawtacular hike with wide vistas and panoramic views of the famous Lake Henshaw and the Palomar Mountains. The trail also features seasonal ponds, an oak-lined meadow, a stream, and an old rustic barn. All these features combined make this trail a pleasant stroll for hikers of all skill levels, and definitely a great place to escape for a walk with your pupper. Just make sure to keep your pooch leashed along this trail.
You can get to the trail by following the junction off Highway 76 and East Grade Road, then heading north on East Grade road for about three miles to the Love Valley Meadow trailhead on the left where you can park at the large dirt turnout.
From the parking lot, walk around the metal gate and head downhill on the fire road. One of the first pawsome views you will get is of the mountains and Lake Henshaw. Along the trail, you will cross a narrow stream about a quarter a mile into the trail. As you keep descending along the trail, you will come across a fork where you can decide to walk straight towards the old barn or turn south towards a small hillock dotted with trees. This hillock will provide even better views of the Lake.
Along the path, you will find plenty of wildflowers and a short section with overgrown ceanothus. These plants and any small animals along the trail should be protected, so be sure to always maintain control of your tail-wagger. It is also wise to carry some drinking water and clean up bags.
Most places along the trail are great for picnicking since at about 3,300 feet above sea level, the place is reasonably cool throughout the year. There are also several oak trees that provide shade if it gets too hot during summer. That said, the best time to visit the park is between November and June.
In short, the Love Valley Trail is purfect for the casual walker seeking to spend time with their pooch in an amazing place with majestic views of nature.
The old rustic barn along the trail can be a hazard since it is old and rusted. Avoid letting your pooch or children wander into this area to prevent any injury.