Just beyond the entrance to Palomar Mountain State Park lies the Silvercrest Picnic Area, a quaint spot to enjoy a picnic with the family or relax in some quiet solitude. It its also the start of the short but scenic Silvercrest Trail, traversing a ridge along the southern edge of Palomar. You can do this hike as is, or make a longer figure-8 by adding on the Boucher Hill Loop.
After less than a quarter of a mile, the trail leveled out and we had a generally easy stroll. Much of this area had burned in the 2007 Poomacha fire, leaving a number of charred and leafless trees behind.
We soon came to the end of the Silvercrest Trail where we met the main road. We crossed the street, and started down a paved road that would connect us to the Scott’s Cabin Trail (the sign says Authorized Vehicles Only but hikers are allowed – just not cars).
Take I-15 north to the Via Rancho Parkway exit. Turn right onto E Via Rancho Parkway, continue as it turns into Bear Valley Parkway. Turn right onto E Valley Parkway, continue as it turns into Valley Center Road. Turn right onto CA-76 East. After approximately 6 miles, make a slight left onto S Grade Rd/Palomar Mountain Rd. Turn left onto S Grade Road, then turn left again onto State Park Road. Follow the road to the Park entrance where you will stop and pay your entry fee. Just beyond the park entrance, find the Silvercrest Picnic Area on your left and park in the large parking lot. map
|Total Distance:||1.4 miles|
|Total Ascent:||275 feet|
|Dog Friendly?:||Dogs not allowed|
|Bike Friendly?:||Bikes not allowed|
|Facilities:||Restrooms and water in parking lot|
|Fees/Permits:||$10 day use fee per vehicle|