Bicycling through South Escondido


Bicyclists traveling between Escondido, California and the Rancho Bernardo area of San Diego must ride on the shoulders of Interstate 15 over Lake Hodges. There are no other reasonably direct routes. NOTE: On May 15, 2009, a new bicycle/pedestrian bridge over Lake Hodges just west of Interstate 15 will be opened and dedicated.

Heavy traffic in the interchange immediately north of Interstate 15 can make this a hard route to follow. The directions and map below will help you find your way while avoiding the worst traffic.

Schematic Map

Directions for Northbound Bicyclists

Enter northbound Interstate 15 from the south side of Pomerado Road, just east of Interstate 15. NOTE: After the new pedestrian/bicycle bridge opens on May 15, 2009, you can enter it from the north side of West Bernardo Dr. just west of Interstate 15. After you cross the bridge, keep right and ride under Interstate 15 to the south end of Sunset Dr. Follow Sunset Dr. north to Via Rancho Parkway.

Exit at Via Rancho Parkway.

At Via Rancho Parkway, there is a traffic light. You have three ways to go:

  1. THIS ROUTE IS CLOSED DURING CONSTRUCTION ON INTERSTATE 15. Turn left, go up to the next traffic light, and then turn left again into northbound Interstate 15. Take the first exit, which leads to Centre City Parkway.
  2. Turn right onto Via Rancho Parkway and follow it for somwhat less than 0.43 miles. Then turn left onto Beethoven Drive. You may ride on Beethoven Drive, or you may follow a separated bike path on the right side of Beethoven Drive. You probably won't be able to see it from the road, because it's elevated and concealed behind trees and shrubs. Just before the bridge over Interstate 15, turn right onto the path, cross a small bridge over a drainage ditch, and follow a paved path through an unimproved part of Kit Carson Park to a gate. Walk your bike around the gate to the south end of El Ku Ave. Follow El Ku Ave., which becomes Escondido Blvd. and runs parallel to Centre City Parkway. Switch to Centre City Parkway at the first opportunity.
  3. Ride through the North County Fair Shopping Center parking lot. Go shopping if you wish, then go out the back way to Beethoven Drive. Follow the bike path and El Ku Ave. as described above.

Centre City Parkway has bike lanes and runs through the center of Escondido.

Directions for Southbound Bicyclists

When traveling south on Centre City Parkway, watch the signs so you won't be forced into the tunnel under Interstate 15. This tunnel is technically open to bicyclists (although it is closed during the current construction work), but it has always been a bad way to go.

Do not follow the bike route detour signs. They will lead you along a very hilly route.

Turn left at Citracado Parkway and turn right onto Escondido Blvd., which runs parallel to Centre City Parkway and quite close to it. If you miss this turn, you will have one more chance, at an unmarked and uncontrolled intersection.

Follow Escondido Blvd., which becomes El Ku Ave., to its south end, where you will find a locked gate on the left side.

Walk your bike around the gate, and follow a paved path 0.20 miles.

At the end of the path, cross a small bridge and turn right again on another path, which will take you to Beethoven Drive.

NOTE: After the new pedestrian/bicycle bridge opens on May 15, 2009, you can follow an alternate route decribed below.

Continue on Beethoven Drive, which becomes Del Lago Blvd. when it crosses over Interstate 15.

At the end of Del Lago Blvd. continue straight ahead into the entrance to southbound Interstate 15.

Leave Interstate 15 at the first exit (West Bernardo Dr, Pomerado Rd). The exit emerges on the south side of West Bernardo Dr. Turn right to Pomerado Road or left to West Bernardo Drive.

After the new pedestrian/bicycle bridge opens on May 15, 2009, you can take an alternate route:

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E-mail comments, corrections and additions to the webmaster at pje@efgh.com.

April 29, 2009