Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Hike In Eaton Canyon - Altadena, CA

Today, my dog Hiker and I joined our friend Linda for a hike in Eaton Canyon, which is located in Altadena, CA. We had never hiked this area before and we were looking forward to checking this canyon out.

The main trail is very well maintained and the first mile of the trail is a moderate hike. There are a few spots with slight inclines, but the trail is wide and very well marked. You first cross a dry creek bed, which I'm sure has water in it during the rainy months. A little farther into the trail, you will find a few oak groves too.

If you want to stay on the main trail, it starts to climb very steeply at the 1 mile mark and winds up the mountain. We decided to take the waterfall trail.

From this sign, it is 1/2 mile up to the 40 foot waterfall, and is a pretty vigorous hike up and down the hillside, climbing over boulders and you must cross the creek many times before you reach the waterfall.

Then...our first glimpse of the falls.

Our total hike was 3 miles and was very enjoyable. This hike is a good one and I recommend it to anyone who lives in the area. There is a Nature Center with exhibits and a gift shop. It's best to hike this canyon on a week-day as it becomes very crowded on week-ends.

Eaton Canyon Natural Area, supervised and maintained by the Los Angeles County Department of Parks and Recreation, is a 190-acre zoological, botanical, and geological wonderland situated at the base of the beautiful San Gabriel Mountains. With its hiking trails, wildlife, rocks and minerals, and plants, there is something for everyone to enjoy. It is also the gateway to Heninger Flats, Idle Hour Campground, and Mount Wilson. Visit the Nature Center, where you'll find information, displays, a gift shop, and offices. There is no admission to the park, which is open from sunrise to sunset daily. We ask only that you leave it the way you find it, and take nothing away but photos and pleasant memories.

Directions: Eaton Canyon Natural Area is located at 1750 North Altadena Drive, one block north of New York Drive in Pasadena, California. There is a sign on the east side of the street which clearly marks the entrance to the Park. From the 210 Freeway eastbound, exit at Sierra Madre Boulevard/Altadena Drive. Turn left (north) at the first light (Altadena Drive) and go 1.6 miles to the park entrance. From the 210 Freeway westbound, exit at San Gabriel Boulevard/San Marino. Turn right (north) at the second light (Altadena Drive) and go 1.5 miles to the park entrance.

Address: 1750 N. Altadena Drive, Pasadena
Phone: (626) 398-5420

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Hiking O'Melveny Park/Bee Canyon - Granada Hills, CA

My brother is visiting me this weekend, so he and I took my dog Hiker over to Granada Hills to a place known as O'Melveny Park/Bee Canyon. I had never hiked this area before so I was interested in this new adventure. This area is part of the Michael D. Antonovich Open Space and connects to the trails in East & Rice Canyons and Towsley Canyon on the Santa Clarita side of the mountains.

The hike starts off from the parking lot at the bottom of O'Melveny park. You can take either the dirt "nature trail" or the paved path that takes you through the middle of the park. We decided to take the nature trail.

This trail and the paved path meet up about 3/4 of a mile in, but then the trail narrows and heads up into the canyon.

We hiked a total of 2 miles this day. If you don't mind the steep climb, you can hike for many miles in this area.

O'Melveny Park is located above Granada Hills in the San Fernando Valley. The park surrounds the Bee Canyon watershed and abuts the Santa Susana mountain range below Oat Mountain. Hiking trails and fire roads invite exploration of this 672-acre park. Outside of Griffith Park, O'Melveny Park is the city's second largest park.

Directions: Take the 118/Ronald Reagan Freeway and exit Balboa Blvd. Turn north, driving 2 miles to Sesnon, turn left going west .6 mile, turn right at park entrance.