Hello everyone! This is a friendly reminder that any of these fun places we may visit, we are a guest at. Please treat both businesses and trails with the utmost respect. We here at Hidden San Diego follow the 'Leave no Trace' mantra, meaning whatever you bring with you comes back with you. If you see trash on a trail, please do your part to help remove it. Remember, we are not picking up trash from another person but instead cleaning up for Mother Nature. Happy adventures!

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Lake Ramona
Ramona, A 92065

Phone: (760) 788-2200
33.0242001, -116.9970989

Trailhead: Poway Lake

Hike: 5.9 miles out and back   Level: Moderately Strenuous

Dog-Friendly: Yes   Kid-Friendly: Yes


About Lake Ramona

Lake Ramona was built in the 1980’s as a storage facility to provide inexpensive water for local agricultural needs as well as an emergency storage in case a shortage should arise.

Access to this lake is rather difficult and great for endurance, therefore keeping the population of people low. I recommend this trip in fall, winter and spring as it gets HOT out here in summer.

There are no bathrooms or drinking fountains up there so please bring enough water for the hike back. It is almost 3 miles one way and much of it is climbing up hill. You must go through the Blue Sky Reserve in Poway to get to this lake, which is quite beautiful and forested with greenery and flowers in the spring.

The lake is open year-round from sunrise to sunset. They close the gates in the parking lot at sunset so plan your trip accordingly! Make sure to bring snacks too as this hike works up an appetite! There is no swimming allowed but you can fish. I have read that there are bass and catfish.

While you’re in the area, make sure to check out Tooth Rock nearby!

So that dam in the photo below is our destination. You must hike below into the canyon and then zigzag back up to reach it. 1-way is almost 3 miles:

You have to hike through Lake Poway & Blue Sky Reserve to get there:become a hidden san diego member

There are stunning views up there! Let us continue to climb though!

Finally! You actually get to walk through the dam to get to the lake!

We had to get back before the gates closed so we didn’t get to spend too much time at the lake. So heading back down!

So many colors!


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4 Reviews

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Overall Rating 0
Difficulty Finding 0

4 Reviews


  • Ozzy
    Rating Overall Rating Difficulty Finding

    Watch out for big snakes in the summer

    June 2, 2015

  • Ozzy w.
    Rating Overall Rating Difficulty Finding

    So just tried to get to the lake and the back road/trail that it wants you to take is locked and has a ton of sighs saying tow away and unauthorized vehicles will be cited and or towed so if anyone else knows a way to get to the lake let me know

    September 10, 2016

  • Renee
    Rating Overall Rating Difficulty Finding

    That black beetle is called a “diabolical ironclad” beetle (Nosoderma diabolicum)

    January 16, 2017

  • Anonymous
    Rating Overall Rating Difficulty Finding

    Are there catfish?

    July 24, 2019

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