Hiking L.A.

Blogged: November 23, 2007

Hiking L.A., Most Literally

Hiking L.A. has been in summer hibernation mode, apparently. When I logged in to blogger to add this post, I was shocked to see that I haven't added a hike since June. June? Surely I've hiked since then (I have), so what's the deal?

Well, first check out my post about walking the entire length of Pico Boulevard on the Pico and the Man blog. I believe that counts as "hiking L.A." in the most literal sense possible. And you won't see this in the San Gabriels:

Mannequins have butts, too

There are a few other reasons I haven't been posting or hiking as much as I used to. First: I was busy finishing my book (which, despite Amazon.com's listings, will be authored by me, not "Chronicle Books LLC Staff" or whatever). Second: my usual hiking partner "BF" is no longer my BF, so I haven't been hiking as much. That's right, boys, I'm single now. I'll be accepting applications until further notice.

Take care, and I hope to have some new hikes (that don't involve 15.6 miles of concrete) posted soon!


Blogged: June 5, 2007

Josephine Peak

Hiked: February 19, 2007.

I know it's June and I'm just now getting around to posting a hike from February. I swear I have a good excuse. Or a couple of good excuses. Here are the highlights:
  1. I don't have a (full-time) desk job anymore. This means I don't have copious amounts of spare time to stare at a computer.
  2. I have other writing duties. A nice publisher is actually paying me to write something, so Hiking L.A. becomes a lesser priority.
  3. I've been knitting like a madwoman, and last time I checked you can't hike or type while knitting. Oh yes, and they're also paying me to knit.

• Length: 8 miles
• Elevation gain/loss: 1900'
• Location: San Gabriels
• Type of Hike: Out and back.

Satisfied? I know, I know. I'm a bad blogger. I hope you all will forgive me.

What's the first step to winning your forgiveness? Sucking up, of course!

This hike is dedicated to Casey at Modern Hiker who hiked this peak a while back. I would definitely check out his post to find out more information on this hike.

BF and I chose to do this hike because we wanted something quick but not too easy. As usual, it was getting late and we didn't want to get stuck hiking in the dark. Because it was closeby and the trail itself was a fire road, we figured we could get up and back before the sun went down.

It was a cool, brisk day, which is always refeshing in Southern California. As we started up the hill, I was moderately concerned about some swirling clouds nearby. Call me crazy, but I'm sensitive about getting caught on a mountain peak during a thunderstorm. Luckily, the clouds stayed South of us. Here's a view of Strawberry Peak with the clouds:

Strawberry Peak

To get up to the peak, the fire road steadily climbs up the South side of the mountain for the first few miles. For the last mile or so, you disappear behind the mountain and get an awesome view of the San Gabriels to the North. The only downside to this was that the North side of the mountain was quite cold. So cold it froze my energy bar. Oh well.

Here are a few views as you're heading up the mountain:

Downtown L.A.

See downtown L.A.?

At the top it was gorgeous:
View from Josephine Peak

And then it was time to head down because the sun was setting. Here's a panorama of the sunset

BF and I almost jogged down the mountain because it was such an easy trail. That and the light was fading. Thankfully, we only needed to use our flashlights for the last hundred yards or so.

More photos at on flickr.

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Blogged: May 9, 2007

Dante's View, R.I.P.

Griffith Park is burning. One of the early casualties was the popular hiking destination called "Dante's View." It is no more. Guess I won't be hiking that trail any time soon.

Here are some pics BF and I took tonight from the L.A. River. More can be found in my full flickr set.

A smouldering hillside:
Smouldering Hillside

Wide shot of the whole hillside:
Griffith Park Fire & L.A. River

Fire appearing to pour down the hillside:
Fire Pouring Down Hillside

Scorched earth:

A "fire tornado":
Big "Fire Tornado"

More hills on fire:
Entire Hill on Fire

Tree silhouetted by fire:
Tree Silhouetted by Fire

I'm really curious what all this will look like in the morning. It'll be a long time before Griffith Park returns to its former glory, that's for sure.