register help

San Luis Rey River Trail, CA

no permit
11 5 0
Guide 5 Triplogs  0 Topics
Rated  Favorite Wish List CA > San Diego
2 of 5 by 1
clicktap icons for details
Distance Round Trip 0 miles
Trailhead Elevation 43 feet
varies or not certain dogs are allowed
editedit > ops > dogs to adjust
Photos Viewed All Mine Following
4  2015-07-15 azbackpackr
7  2011-11-13 azbackpackr
Author HAZ_Hikebot
author avatar Guides 16,882
Routes 16,052
Photos 24
Trips 1 map ( 6 miles )
Age 22 Male Gender
Location TrailDEX, HAZ
Associated Areas
list map done
La Jolla Reservation
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
Expand Map
Reservation La Jolla
Preferred   Apr, Jan, Feb, Mar
Sun  5:34am - 5:53pm
1 Alternative
Flora Nearby

This is a paved trail from the beach at Oceanside inland along the San Luis Rey River and Highway 76. Its newest extension ends directly across Hwy 76 from Guajome Park. Its users include mountain bikers, road bikers, walkers, runners, dog walkers, stroller pushers, skate boarders, roller skaters, wheelchair riders, etc.
City of Oceanside information about the trail. [ view map ]

Check out the Triplogs.

Leave No Trace and +Add a Triplog after your hike to support this local community.

2018-07-14 HAZ_Hikebot
  • San Luis Rey River Trail
    guide related
    San Luis Rey River Trail
WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.

Most recent Triplog Reviews
San Luis Rey River Trail
rating optionrating optionrating optionrated 2rated 2
Just a quick bike ride inland from the beach and back again. Despite comfortable temperature the trail wasn't crowded on this day. It was a week day in July.

You can park for free a couple of places by the beach (see GPS route). One is in the two hour parking by the Nautical Bean coffee place (near the lighthouse). The other is through a tunnel under the 5, to a big parking lot. It's hard to find street parking near the trailhead in summer.

Always lock your bike in California. Lock it to your bike rack on your car, and if you leave it for 1 minute to go in and buy a soda, lock it. My ex lost his nice bike when running into the Oceanside Senior Center for two minutes a couple of years ago. It was gone, gone, gone when he came out.
San Luis Rey River Trail
rating optionrating optionrating optionrated 2rated 2
I'm not sure exactly how far I rode. There are numbers in the pavement that would indicate I rode about 18 miles, but I am not sure whether or not to believe them. I had ridden this before but not all the way to its end at N. Santa Fe Drive. This was because east of College Blvd. the trail cuts through a neighborhood. So, previously I always turned around there. This time I followed the signs through the neighborhood, and voila, came upon another section of the trail.

Recently I lost my bike computer (odometer.) :(

Parts of this bike path go through bad sections of town and there is a lot of graffiti, which the parks department tries to keep on top of but apparently it is a lost cause. There seemed to be fewer people on the east section of the trail.

I am not sure that the trail as listed in HAZ is the same trail I rode. The San Luis Rey River Trail belongs to the City of Oceanside, and is a paved bicycle path. The official literature says it is 7.2 miles long, but doesn't mention the miles for the new section on the east end. So, it's about 9 miles long.
San Luis Rey River Trail
rating optionrating optionrating optionrated 2rated 2
This is a paved bike path that starts almost at the ocean in Oceanside and goes up the San Luis Rey River along a levee. I don't think I rode the whole path, because when I got to a residential area, the path suddenly ended, but signs indicated it might start up again after you ride along a street for a short distance. That occurs about 8 miles ride from the ocean. The miles are marked on the path's pavement. (I used my odometer, but also recorded round trip mileage, riding from my son's house at Camp Pendleton.) I rode my mountain bike, but road bikes or roller blades are fine too. Or you can walk, but it would be deadly boring, at least for me. There were quite a few people out there enjoying it. Lots of roadies and runners.

A fire started about 5 minutes after I had passed a road crossing. I stopped for a break and was surprised to see black smoke billowing up. The road crossings have bypasses for the trail that go under the river bridges, so you don't have to cross traffic. Anyhow, this fire must have started quite suddenly right after I passed that area. I could see it back there, but didn't feel like riding back to see what it was.

Although this path has a lot of natural beauty, it is quite urban as well, and the further inland you go, the more graffiti there is. This area used to all be rural when I was a kid, but so much has changed in 40 years. I don't want to belabor that point, but it's always in the back of my mind. Once upon a time I tried to raft the San Luis Rey River during the spring runoff, but that was in another lifetime...with a good friend who is now long dead. We grounded on sandbars so frequently that we had to give up, hitching back to the car which we had parked way up by Pala somewhere. No casinos back then. No graffiti, either. No I-15.

The history of Spanish settlement of this area goes back to the 1700's. It's fascinating. You can visit the old Spanish mission:

Permit $$
no fees or permits reported

if incorrect tell us about it

Map Drive

To hike
Access 1 – Neptune Way
Street Parking
Information Kiosk
Access 1 is the western-most entrance and marks the official start of the trail at the 0.0 mile marker. It is within a few blocks of the Oceanside Transit Center where commuters can board the Coaster, Amtrak and Metrolink trains or North County Transit District buses, all of which can accommodate bicycles. This access will eventually link with the Coastal Rail Trail that will run in a north-south direction connecting to Carlsbad and further into San Diego.

Access 2 – Pacific Street
Access 3 – Benet Road
Information Kiosk
Access 3 lies just west of the Oceanside Municipal Airport. Access the Benet Road entrance off Highway 76. Head east on Highway 76 and turn left on Benet Road. There is no parking lot at this access point.

The Benet Road access is located at mile marker 2.4 on the trail.

Access 4 – Foussat Road
Parking Lot
Information Kiosk
Access 4 lies northeast of the Oceanside Municipal Airport and can be accessed off Highway 76. Head east on Highway 76, turn left on Foussat Road, and follow the road to the trail access parking lot.

Located at mile marker 3.2 on the trail.

Access 5 – Cypress Road
Access 6 – Douglas Drive
Information Kiosk
Picnic Tables
Trash Receptacles
Access 6 lies further north and inland at the 5.4 mile marker and may be reached by traveling east on Highway 76. Turn left on Douglas Drive and travel approximately 1 mile. The access and small parking lot is located on the left-hand side of Douglas Drive. Access to the parking lot is not available when traveling north. To safely access the lot and trail, travel to North River Road, turn around and head south. Turn right into the lot at the Douglas bridge overpass.

Access 7 – College Boulevard/Mance Buchanon Park
Parking Lot
Information Kiosk
Picnic Tables
Trash Receptacles
Restrooms at Park
Access 7 is the easternmost access point for the trail.

Access 7 is at Mance Buchanon Park which offers a larger parking lot, a staging area, restrooms, water fountains, shaded picnic tables, shaded grass areas and an additional pathway that loops the park. The College Boulevard access can be reached by traveling east on Highway 76 to Douglas Drive. Turn left on Douglas Drive and travel approximately 1.2 miles. Turn right on North River Road traveling east to College Boulevard. Turn right on College; the trail access is immediately following your right turn.

The College Blvd. access marks the 7.2 mile marker. From College to North Santa Fe Avenue there is an additional 1.8 miles = 9 miles total.

Access 8 – Andrew Jackson Drive
Bike lane detours onto surface street for ¼ mile.

Access 9 – Tyler Street
Bike lane detours onto surface street for ¼ mile.

Access 10 – North Santa Fe Avenue/Highway 76
Parking Lot
Information Kiosk
Trash Receptacles
Access 10 is the easternmost access point for the trail.
page created by HAZ_Hikebot on Mar 10 2010 12:26 am
1 TB Flash Drive... $40
help comment issue

end of page marker