Highland Valley Trail sits right across from an historic battle site called Mule Hill. More on that another day though. This area is lush and has both shaded and non-shaded areas along the hike. Most of the hike is alongside a road which may turn some people off, but the road is not too populated and didn't take away from the enjoyment or beauty of the area for us.
This is a lovely hike to do during sunset with views of Lake Hodges in the distance. We came across Native American evidence along the hike through grinding holes in a flat boulder. This area burned down in the 2003 Cedar Fire. I love how nature always rebuilds. The hike is easy with little elevation. We took this trip in early spring:
There was this fallen tree filled with the coolest-looking mushrooms: