19482-19826 W Bernardo Dr.
San Diego, CA 92127
Dog-Friendly: Yes Kid-Friendly: Yes
Hike: There are many trails on this land Level: Each hike varies in level of difficulty
Lake Hodges is known nationally for it’s largemouth bass population. This lake is one of the few ever to produce a 20 lb class largemouth without a trout stock at the lake. The lake record is 20 lbs 4 ozs. Popular lures for bass here include plastic worms (6-12 inches), pig-n-jigs, spinnerbaits, crankbaits and of course live bait, especially crawdads. Concentrate most of your early season bassin’ in the tules.
Hodges also provides great fishing for crappie, 2 pounders are not uncommon. The lake record crappie is 3 lbs 3 ozs. Big channel catfish are fairly common in the summer, with favorite baits being mackerel or chicken liver. The most productive areas of the lake for all species of fish are the Narrows and the area around the dam. Make sure to check out the waterfall while you’re out here!
We have found the old rock quarry which was used to construct the dam and nearby are the Popcorn and Gnome caves. Above in the hills you may be able to find the Spaceship House, which is part of a large artist community. So many lovely, hidden gems in this area!
Personal Experience: I grew up in this area & played softball for many, many years at the fields adjacent these trails. This area holds fond memories for me as I know it does for many of you too. There is a so-so waterfall off of one of the trails here so keep your eyes peeled!
This area made headlines after Chelsea King was found murdered here after a jog back in ’10. The community came together so beautifully during this time but sadly none of it was enough to bring her back alive. As tranquil as places like these are, please be smart (especially you females) and do not go alone. There are houses overlooking where Chelsea was abducted in broad daylight. All it took were mere seconds to pull her out of view. I don’t mean to be morbid, I just want everyone to be smart about their exploring.
This is a great area to enjoy the wildflowers in the springtime!
A small memorial for Chelsea King can be found out here:This memorial once sat where she was murdered but has since been washed away after rising waters during winter storms: