While Los Angeles is such a large metropolitan area, there is a good amount of nature nearby featuring trails that help people escape the city. I haven’t really explored too much, but there are three places that I have hiked that were interesting enough to mention. I realized that I haven’t actually gone hiking at all in a while, so hopefully I’ll get to do it again once the weather gets a little cooler. Anyway, here are three fun hikes in the LA area.
Located in Pasadena, this a pretty easy trail that leads to a waterfall in which can you can swim. There are both shady and non-shady portions to walk through and you do have to cross a river multiple times to get there, but that is part of the fun. I’ve gotten pretty lucky in rock-hopping without getting my shoes wet, but for some reason, I tend to always slip up right when the waterfall is in sight. The water itself is freezing, but after a while, you get used to it, and some people are brave enough to pass (or in my case, be dragged) through the waterfall. There are other waterfalls in the area as well, but they take a little extra work to get there and you just need to make sure you are careful since there are deaths reported about people who have accidentally fallen. Sometimes, there can be a lot of people at the waterfall, but both times I went, it wasn’t too bad. Unfortunately, people also tend to just dump their trash to the side of the trails which is incredibly frustrating. During a hike going back to our car, my friends and I decided that we would just take it upon ourselves to pick up as many pieces of trash we could find and it was ridiculous how full our bags were by the time we were done. It’s a really nice hike, so just keep it clean!
My friends and I actually came across this by accident while we were trying to find a hiking trail on San Vicente Mountain. It’s a relic of the Cold War era when threat of attack by the Soviet Union still existed and Nike missiles were kept here to shoot down Soviet aircrafts. Walking around is a little creepy, especially when nobody else is there. The radar tower is a nice place to climb up and see awesome views and message boards explain a lot of the history of the location. There is an entrance to a trail on one end of the site and we went down about two miles before realizing that we weren’t exactly sure where we would end up. Apparently, it leads down to Reseda Blvd, which is actually considered the starting point for some people. The hike itself follows a fire trail, so it is really important not to overexert yourself and to bring water since shade is somewhat hard to come by. If you are into military history, or history in general, then the Nike Missile Control Site is a really interesting place to explore before or after your hike.
This the main hiking path to reach the back of the Hollywood Sign and it’s a fire trail with the added inconvenience of horse manure, but it is still a big accomplishment to finally make your way to the top of the mountain and see how big those letters really are. There are also pretty stunning views of the city as well as interesting photo ops on the way up to enjoy. I think it took us about 45 minutes to an hour to get to the top, but we did take a few stops to rest on the way. To get to the start of the trail, you need to follow Beachwood Drive until you get to a dusty road in which you have the choice of attempting to find a spot in the lot or parking on the side and walking from there.
There you have it. Let me know if you know of any other noteworthy hikes since I really do want to go on more in the future. It’s just been way too long.