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December 16, 2020

Secret Swing - Urban Hiking La Jolla

There’s two very easy short hikes here.  First let’s see if I can find the ‘secret swings’ of La Jolla.  This location is not so secret, just enter “La Jolla Secret Swing” into the Google Maps search bar.

The street parking at the top was reserved for students.  Rather than risk a ticket or purchase a guest permit, I chose to park at the Birch Aquarium visitor lot.  The aquarium remains Covid-closed and I was the only car there.

It’s a short steep climb up to the swing.  

Today there were two swings.  

In the past there have been 6 or more, or even no swings!  It looks like these will stay, as where the previous swings hung is now populated with reforestation signs.  

The large two person swing has been here in some form for quite awhile. 

Do the search #lajollasecretswings, as suggested on the swing to see some of its previous versions.

But I like the current one best:
”It’s the world’s job to come at you in waves.  It’s your job to learn to surf”.

The views from the swing are spectacular.  This would be a great place to watch the sunset and capture a Green Flash.


The upper trail is a bit longer, but level.  It's parking that can be an issue.

A short drive below the swings and a couple left turns is the entrance to Pottery Canyon.

The Rodriguez brothers founded La Jolla Canyon Clay Products here using a wood fired kiln to make roofing tiles and adobe brick for over 40 years.

The remains of the old kiln is on private property and no other remnants of that time remain.

The San Diego Reader mentions a trail to the top of the canyon with views of La Jolla and the ocean, but I did not find it.  The San Diego parks map does not show this trail at all.

I took the short easy trail, 


 but it ends quickly in a fallen eucalyptus log jam.

The small canyon is surrounded by expensive homes and steep hillsides.

Or private property along the entrance.


La Jolla rejected San Diego’s offer to revitalize the park.  Guess it will remain an unmaintained open space.  That just might be a good thing :)




  1. Hmmm, never knew about the swings... cool!

    1. A destination to add to your next visit.

  2. Beautiful place. Neat they have words on the swings and even a neat proverb. I'm still learning to surf. 😀

    1. LOL - Me too, Doug! Bet a lot of people are learning to surf this year.

  3. love the views from those swings!

  4. Nice trail and appears secluded even though it is in the heart of a residential neighborhood.

    1. The trail thru Pottery Canyon is very short, without a enough diversity for a return visit.


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