Category archive for dog-friendly

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Hike Canyon View Loop in Whitewater Preserve

The bright, wide slash of Whitewater Canyon is a place of many treasures – well, the more natural kind, at least. From towering fanglomerate cliffs to the (sometimes) rushing Whitewater River, from the sandy desert floor to lush riparian greenery, this is a place unlike any other in Southern California. In 1939, the canyon became home to the Whitewater Trout…

read » January 22, 2015
mentryville mountains

Hike Mentryville Park

There are many reasons why California is what it is today – but you can argue that more than anything, two natural resources were instrumental in building the region and even making the land United States territory: gold and oil. Those who bemoan Southern California’s lack of preserved history need look no further than present-day Santa Clarita. To its east…

read » January 14, 2015
ChaparrosaPeakView

Hike Chaparrosa Peak

Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead In our glittering world of megamalls and high-rises, the constant push for development has a profound impact on our relationship with the natural world. Unprotected wild lands continually recede in the shadow of towering…

read » January 13, 2015
El Cajon Mountain

Hike El Cajon Mountain

Get ready to take a week off from using the stair-master. This epic hike is one of the most challenging and strenuous in San Diego County, and its countless ups-and-downs will work your quads, calves, and glutes into meek submission. Unlike the gym, however, this trip over one of the most rugged and challenging landscapes in the county will grant…

read » January 6, 2015
Berlin Forest

Hike to Berlin Forest

Los Angeles, California and Berlin, Germany have been sister cities since 1967. To commemorate the 25th anniversary of that arrangement, the cities exchanged some local flora in 1990. Here in L.A., we got Griffith Park’s Berlin Forest – a small grove of pine trees above Griffith Observatory that may not feel much like a forest, but is still a lovely…

read » November 25, 2014
western canyon

Hike Western Canyon

If you like to hike up to the Griffith Observatory but are getting tired of the usual approaches and firebreaks, or if you’re just looking for a way to create a longer loop trail to destinations deeper in the park’s interior, then much-overlooked Western Canyon may be a nice addition to your Griffith Park experience. The trail at Western Canyon…

read » November 25, 2014
Guajome County Park

Guajome County Park

Guajome County Park is an oasis of marshes, creeks, ponds, and lakes tucked into bustling east Oceanside. The park offers several miles of trails, a campground, two day use areas with picnic tables and playground equipment, fishing, and hiking, all within 30 minutes of most of North County. While the rest of the county bakes during the summer, cool ocean…

read » November 25, 2014
glendale peak

Hike Glendale Peak

Glendale Peak is one of those hidden-in-plain-view gems: an easily reachable peak with stellar views that – for some reason – seems to go overlooked by most hikers who generally keep trudging past the short side-trail on their way to Mount Hollywood. But on a clear day, Griffith Park hikers can see sweeping vistas from the San Gabriels all the…

read » November 25, 2014
Sitton Peak

Hike Sitton Peak

One of the better kept secrets in Southern California hiking is the presence of a large Federal Wilderness tucked between Ortega Highway, the semi-rural town of Fallbrook, and sprawling Camp Pendleton Marine Base. This wilderness protects the nearly pristine San Mateo Canyon watershed, which offers numerous hiking and backpacking adventures. Much of the wilderness is difficult to access due to…

read » November 10, 2014
Bernardo Mountain

Hike Bernardo Mountain and Lake Hodges

Bernardo Mountain is a prominent and easily accessible peak towering over the tranquil waters of Lake Hodges. Both landmarks play a starring role in this moderate 7+ mile peak-bagging excursion, which also features good views over the eastern half of the county toward the Peninsular Ranges in addition to the Del Dios Gorge carved out by the San Dieguito River.…

read » October 28, 2014
guatay mountain

Hike Guatay Mountain

Weighing in at 4,875′, Guatay Mountain comes a few hairs and a stepstool short of being counted into the 5,000′ club like its nearby siblings in Cuyamaca Rancho State Park. Unlike these other nearby peaks, Guatay Mountain boasts one of the last remaining old growth populations of Tecate cypress, a now rare tree that was once far more common prior…

read » October 16, 2014
Kwaay Paay Peak

Hike Kwaay Paay, Mission Dam, and Kumeyaay Lake

This choose-your-own adventure hike through the north section of Mission Trails Regional Park visits a rare patch of native grasslands, a dam constructed by Spanish missionaries, a short but sharp peak ascent, and a lake occupying what was once a military base. Any one of these destinations can make a satisfying hike on its own, but taken together they form…

read » October 15, 2014
parker-lake

Hike Parker Lake

Parker Lake is one of the smaller lakes near the June Lake Loop, but while foliage-seeking tourists will flock to the easily accessible aspen groves of June, Gulf, Silver, and Grant Lakes, for a tiny bit more effort hikers can enjoy the absolutely stunning views at the end of the Parker Lake Trail. There is a handful of trails I…

read » October 9, 2014
Convict Lake

Hike Convict Lake

Tucked into a magnificent granite bowl in the shadow of towering Mt. Morrison, colorful Convict Lake is one of the finest fall color hikes in the area between Bishop and Mammoth Lakes. This easy and mostly flat 3.3 mile loop hike around the lake’s shore offers views of the spectacular Sherwin Range rising up to the Sierra Crest before plunging…

read » October 9, 2014
big pine creek

Hiking the North Fork of Big Pine Creek

If you want to glimpse fall color, but you are also looking for an epic adventure up glacially carved canyons, past cascading waterfalls, through dense thickets of aspen and pine, and into an alpine lake basin full of shimmering, aquamarine lakes fed directly by one of the largest glaciers in the Sierra Nevada Mountains, then the North Fork of Big…

read » October 7, 2014
McGee-Creek-Canyon

Hike McGee Creek Canyon

The Eastern Sierra is a supremely photogenic region of California no matter what time of year, but in early fall when the aspen change color it can be especially tough to beat. McGee Creek – between Mammoth Lakes and Bishop just to the southwest of Lake Crowley – is an absolute must-hike at peak color. It’s difficulty is very manageable…

read » October 7, 2014
sherwin-lakes

Hiking Sherwin Lakes

The Sherwin Lakes are a pair of subalpine lakes on the southern rim of the Long Valley Caldera, in which sits the town of Mammoth Lakes. These two small lakes also host several groves of aspens, which put on a vivid show of fall color from the middle of September to the middle of October. This moderate hike travels through…

read » October 6, 2014
griffith_observatory_firebreak

Hike the Firebreak Trail to Griffith Observatory

Griffith Observatory is one of the most popular attractions in Griffith Park and there is no shortage of ways to get to it. You can drive right up to it and brave the madhouse of free parking, take the Observatory Shuttle on the weekends, or travel on foot via a variety of trails or fire roads. There’s an approach for…

read » October 1, 2014
observatory_east

Hike the East Griffith Observatory Trail

There are probably dozens of ways to get to the excellent Griffith Park Observatory – one of the most popular attractions in Griffith Park. This route details just one of the well-traveled fire road routes that will take you to its beautifully restored doors. If you’re approaching the Observatory from below, there are two main trails most people take. Very…

read » October 1, 2014
griffith_observatory_west

Hike the West Griffith Observatory Trail

One of the most popular trails to one of the most popular attractions in Griffith Park, the West Observatory Trail shouldn’t be overlooked just because you’re not likely to find solitude on it – it’s a great way to get to some beautiful viewpoints and an excellent route for getting a little outdoor time – either as a quick jaunt…

read » October 1, 2014