Miramar Lake

10305-10331 Scripps Lake Dr.
San Diego, CA 92131

Phone: (619) 465-3474
32.911618, -117.101303

Hike: 4.9 loop    Level: Easy to Moderate

Dog-Friendly: Yes    Kid-Friendly: Yes


Hours: The gates are open from 5:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. during Daylight Savings Time and 5:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. when Daylight Savings Time is not in effect.

"Miramar Reservoir is owned, operated and maintained by the City of San Diego. Located in the Scripps Ranch community, the dam and reservoir were completed in 1960 as part of the second San Diego Aqueduct project. Water flowing south to the reservoir originates from both the Colorado River Aqueduct and the California Aqueduct.

Miramar LakeThe reservoir is adjacent to the City's Miramar Water Treatment Plant, which serves the northern part of the City. When full, the reservoir has 162 surface acres, a maximum water depth of 114 feet, and 4 shoreline miles. Miramar Reservoir has a water storage capacity of 6,682.4 acre feet. Water levels are monitored weekly.

This reservoir is very popular for bicycling, jogging, walking, rollerblading and picnicking. A paved service road encircles the reservoir, a distance of 4.92 miles. Vehicular traffic is permitted on this road Saturday through Tuesday only. There are 18 barbecues and 48 picnic tables located around the lake.

Patrons can bring their own gas barbecues for use in designated areas only. No ground fires or glass containers are allowed. Dogs must be kept on a leash at all times and at least 50 feet away from the water. Dogs are not allowed on any boats. Overnight camping is not allowed at Miramar Reservoir.

Concession: Please see What's New - Miramar for current days and hours of operation. They rent boats on a first come basis only, no reservations. There is bait available - shiners, crawdads, nightcrawlers, meal worms and wax worms. Patrons can use credit cards for boat rentals and other purchases, but permits are cash only.

Historical photo of the dam

Fishing: On days or times that the concession is closed patrons can purchase permits from the electronic pay station or the iron ranger box (envelope system). The reservoir has Florida-strain largemouth bass, bluegill, channel catfish, and sunfish. Minimum size limit for bass is 12 inches.

Fish limits are five bass, five catfish and 25 bluegill in aggregate, with no limit of other species. Anglers 16 years of age or older must have a California state fishing license. Fish catch information is updated weekly.

Water Craft: In addition to fishing from boats, patrons can use float tubes, waders, or simply fish from shore. Use of float tubes is restricted to within 150 feet or less from shore. Float tubers must wear chest waders and have a Coast Guard approved personal flotation device readily available at all times, and have 144 square inches of international orange visible at least 12 inches above the water line.

They must also possess a horn or whistle to warn approaching craft. Any float tube that uses oars or has a motor must purchase a private boat use permit."

Personal Experience: I have now hiked Miramar Lake twice and have really mixed feelings about it. I don't fish so I cannot speak on that. I think this is a great place to bring your dog or young family or to enjoy a nice meal. There are two trail options: one that is asphalt and the other that is dirt which walks you along the lake. We obviously took the dirt trail.

There are no astounding features and I feel bad calling this place a yawn but it kind of is. We found some freshwater snails and that was probably the highlight of our trip. This is a 5 mile hike so be warned. Although the lake doesn't seem that big, prepare to be walking for awhile. It's great for some brisk exercise or getting the kids out to innocently explore.

Make sure to check out Evan's Pond when you're here which has ties to E.W. Scripps and the Scripps Castle that was destroyed many years back!

Dragonfly eggs:


The dam:

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5 Reviews

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Overall Rating 0
Difficulty Finding 0

5 Reviews


  • Anonymous
    Rating Overall Rating Difficulty Finding

    ur crazy if you go to Miramar and not go for the Rainbow trout!

    Miramar Lake Fish Report

    by Lake Miramar Staff

    Lake was stocked with Trout on Thursday 1/23/14.

    Seems like the bass are getting used to the trout stocks and are coming out of hiding!

    The trout bite is definitely happening. The bass are biting throughout the lake. The City reports 19 bass and 14 Trout, caught by 18 anglers.

    Moe’s hole seems to be the hotspot still.

    Water Temp.: 57 degrees

    Bass: Excellent

    Bluegill: Good

    Catfish: Good

    Trout: Good

    Please contact the Marina at 858-527-1722 for more information

    January 31, 2014

  • Admin
    Rating Overall Rating Difficulty Finding

    Thank you for all the tips anon, like usual! 🙂

    February 15, 2014

  • Re: Anonymous
    Rating Overall Rating Difficulty Finding

    No, but thanks for automatically assuming so!

    November 20, 2015

  • Anonymous
    Rating Overall Rating Difficulty Finding

    Did you really remove the dragon fly eggs for a pic?

    November 20, 2015

  • Heather
    Rating Overall Rating Difficulty Finding

    The eggs you found belong to an invasive snail species, one popular name for them is Apple Snail. Those are the snail shells you found also, and they are not indigenous to the area. They are african in origin and were most likely released or “freed” by someone who grew weary of their aquarium and as a result there are literally thousands upon thousands of them now in the lake. Also, if you find the lower trail a bit boring and are interested in a decent workout, take the upper dirt trails and sprint each uphill. You’ll be too busy catching your breath to be bored.

    March 13, 2016

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Contact info

10305 Scripps Lake Dr, San Diego, CA 92131, USA

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