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Hello everyone! This is a friendly reminder that any of these fun places we may visit, we are a guest at. Please treat both businesses and trails with the utmost respect. We here at Hidden San Diego follow the 'Leave no Trace' mantra, meaning whatever you bring with you comes back with you. If you see trash on a trail, please do your part to help remove it. Remember, we are not picking up trash from another person but instead cleaning up for Mother Nature. Happy adventures!

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Dog-Friendly: Yes    Kid-Friendly: Yes

Article & Research by Allison Garton:

Here at Hidden San Diego, we love to explore ruins and delve into the past of what once was, and we recently discovered something that raised everyone's curiosity.  After researching further, we did not find ruins... we found beginnings. Perched atop a hillside are the beginnings of what was to be an elaborate castle of sorts, constructed from rock that was quarried on-site.

When Bear Valley Dam was constructed and a lake filled to supply the area with water in 1895, the original homesteaders, the Kueblers, found themselves with prime lakeside real estate. They created a resort on the north side of a lake and named it Kuebler's Camp.

During the Great Depression, Earl Losch started working at the resort. In time, he not only purchased Kuebler's Camp, but married the Kuebler's daughter, Ava. Earl built ten adobe cabins that still stand today, an airport (no, seriously... there's an airport here) and a cafe. After nearly forty years of ownership, and harassment by local building inspectors, Earl sold the resort to John O'Flynn in 1977. Earl stayed on at the resort as local historian and spinner of tall tales.

Earl's greatest labor of love was never completed - his Castle Rock. On the 3-acre parcel overlooking a beautiful lake, Earl cleared a homesite and started building... from scratch.

The stone was quarried on-site to build retaining walls and steps, but construction was abruptly halted when Ava became suspicious of Earl's long absences and accused him of infidelity. Ava and Earl had no children, but there is one very strong statement of their love for each other still visible - his-and-her seats carved into boulders with a perfect view of the sunset over the lake.

Today, roughly 200 people live behind the resort. Out of respect for their privacy, we will not reveal the exact location of this spot.

There were two beautiful seats made out of boulders. Amazing!!

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9 Reviews

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9 Reviews

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  • Visitor 1
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    I was there today with a friend after hiking Lake Wolford. We asked the park ranger about this area, and the said the story was a castle was to be built, but was never finished. He didn’t say by who or why construction was stopped. I would also like to know more about this area. The overlook was absolutely beautiful !

    December 8, 2013

  • Anonymous
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    On the opposite shore of that lake there is a llama and ostrich farm (south side of the lake) plus you can always hit the gamblers loop after the lake (The road goes past Valley view, Harrahs, Pauma and Pala casinos before going back to I15. you can even go further to Palomar

    Lots of stuff to do in that area.

    i always stop in at Wohlford Cafe and buy a piece of pie and coffee to help out the poor lady who works there.

    December 8, 2013

  • Anonymous
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    You should checkout Stonewall peak in the Cuyamaca mountains, that’s a nice hike and view and its not that far away.

    December 8, 2013

  • Admin
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    Thank you guys! We’ve gotten some great info on it in the past 24 hrs. Will hopefully update it shortly. Thank you for all your help!

    December 9, 2013

  • Anonymous
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    how do you get there? looks cool, great views. I have driven by the little town below before.

    December 10, 2013

  • Phyllis
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    Fun to recognize this place. Used to go up there as a kid. I didn’t even know it had a name. Back in Escondido, another unusual place on the top of a tall hill/mountain of what used to be an avocado grove, and may still be, is a swing between two giant boulders. My friend and I hiked up there to have a ride, were spotted and asked to leave. Maybe you could check it out?

    August 1, 2014

  • Anonymous
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    I lived in the big red house that used to be on the other mountain next to the castle. Hiked up there every day …what a view !!

    May 5, 2016

  • kelly
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    How long of a hike to get to the lake views?

    September 25, 2017

  • Anonymous
    Rating Overall Rating Difficulty Finding

    Great spot found while walking at the lake, I noticed a pattern up in the hills across the road

    November 12, 2017

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