Wildhorse Trail

Area Status: Open

Wild Horse Trail

Trail Views

Elevation Gain



10.1 miles round trip

Pets Allowed



None unless using or parking at the campground

Hike/Ride Time

6 to 8 hours



Best Seasons



Dripping Springs Campground off HWY 79 or .5 miles further to Dripping Springs Trailhead

Ranger District

Palomar Ranger District - (760) 788-6130

This 10.1 mile trail located near Temecula off the I-15, beckons hikers deep into the Agua Tibia Wilderness through beautiful oak and sycamore-shaded canyons with lush chaparral which can be ablaze with color from late winter to early spring. The beginning of the trail is reached by hiking up Dripping Springs for .25 miles. The Wildhorse Trail then climbs through a pair of switchbacks and begins ascending along the south canyon wall of Arroyo Seco Creek, which is all but dry except for after a rainy season. Connecting trails provide varying distances for the adventurous hiker looking for greater length (via Palomar-Maggee and Cutca/Palomar Divide Road), and with 1750 elevation change, the most challenging incline comes within the first half mile. At its peak, hikers get scenic views of Vail Lake, Lake Skinner, and the Temecula Valley with rows of vineyards. This trail is best completed during the cooler months, particularly spring, when the rain fills creeks and streams with flowing water. It is recommended for moderately experienced hikers, and equestrian.

For a list of more trails to explore in your area, please see our Recreation Trail Guide

At a Glance

Fees: Forest Adventure Pass
Permit Info: Permit/Visitor Pass is required for overnight stays in the backcountry/wilderness.
Restrictions: Campfires are not permitted at any time.
Operated By: Forest Service

General Information

Directions: From the LA Basin take I-15 south to Highway 79 near Temecula. Take Hwy 79 south 11 miles to Dripping Springs. Turn right and park in Trailhead parking lot. From San Diego take I-15 north to Highway 79. Follow previous instructions. The trail is reached by walking south from the parking lot .5 mile through Dripping Springs Campground.


Day Hiking


Horse Riding

Recreation Areas

Recreation Activities


  Area/Length : 
10.1 miles

  Elevation : 
1750 - 3930