Hiking in Los Angeles: The City’s Best Trails

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Hiking in Los Angeles is a great way to get out of the city, see some nature, and get some exercise. While it may not be as green as other cities like San Francisco or Seattle, there’s plenty of hiking available in Los Angeles that will show you another side of the city.

Los Angeles has hundreds of miles of trails to explore, from urban trails that weave through neighborhoods to more remote trails that take you into nature. You can hike up mountains, explore canyons, or just walk along the beach—whatever your preference! You’ll be sure to find a trail that’s perfect for you when you check out this guide.

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Bronson Canyon

It may not be what you would expect from the entrance to the Batcave, but that tunnel has been used in a wide variety of films. Not for nothing is it called Bronson Cave—two generations of actors have brought the fictional hero to life in front of Bronson Canyon’s cave entrance.

The most famous moment in Bronson Canyon’s history was without a doubt when it was used to film the entrance to the Batcave from the 1960s Batman series. This spot is easily recognizable because it has quite literally been left in its natural state—there’s no sign or plaque designating it as a filming site, just a symmetrical rock formation that looks like a mouth.

If you look closely, you’ll notice that one rock protrudes beyond the rest, making it look like a giant fang poking out from between two rows of teeth. A creative mind could easily envision a giant bat swooping down from above to enter this cave and become Bruce Wayne, but don’t worry—no bats live here.

Bronson Canyon CA

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Runyon Canyon Loop

Though it is technically possible to do the full loop in one go, it is highly recommended to take a break at the top and then head back down. The hike gains elevation quickly, and going downhill can be just as hard on your knees as going uphill. If you’re planning on doing the whole loop, it is suggest starting early in the morning before it gets too hot, or late in the afternoon when it starts to cool down.

Even if you’re out of shape, this is a pretty easy hike that anyone can do. It’s less than 3 miles long, including a trip up and down the summit. There are lots of places on the trail where you can stop and take a break—whether you need to rest or just want to enjoy the view, there are lots of opportunities for that here. And if you’re looking for an excuse to get out of bed a little early and go for a morning stroll in Los Angeles, this is one great reason to do so.

Runyon Canyon Loop CA

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Wilacre Park

If you’re looking for a nice hike that will take you through three parks in the Hollywood Hills, the Betty B. Dearing Trail is your best bet. This trail takes you through Wilacre Park, Fryman Canyon Park and Coldwater Canyon Park—all three of which offer stunning views of the city below. The trail is approximately 2.5 miles long and should take about 2 hours to complete, though you could easily spend more time exploring the various trails at each park.

Located at the entrance to Wilacre Park on Fryman Road, this hike begins with a steep incline but quickly levels off as it passes under shady trees. After a quarter mile, you’ll come to Coldwater Canyon Park where you can see TreePeople, an environmental organization dedicated to urban forestry and helping communities around the world grow greener cities.

Take the cul-de-sac at Iredell Lane to get to the hidden trail within Fryman Canyon Park. The Rainforest Trail (yes, really) is just 0.2 miles long and ends at an overlook with a breathtaking view of Los Angeles—perfect for lunch or picnic lunch while you watch the city buzz below.

Wilacre Park CA

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Topanga State Park

The first two miles of the Topanga State Park hike are a tough climb with no switchbacks. The trail goes up the whole time, which would be fine if you had a reasonable elevation gain. But this climb has about 1,300 feet of elevation gain in just two miles, which is pretty steep. This means lots and lots of steep inclines and declines that will test your cardio endurance.

But as you reach the top of the ridge, you’ll be rewarded with time to take in the beauty of what you’ve earned, with views of the Pacific Ocean to your left and all the way over to Catalina Island on clear days. After you’ve gotten your fill of the sights, there are plenty of places to sit down and enjoy a picnic lunch or just relax on one of the benches that overlook Topanga Canyon.

Topanga State Park CA

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Solstice Canyon

If you’re looking for a place to go on a walk that is well-shaded, Solstice Canyon Trail is an ideal destination. The trail begins with a gentle incline, allowing you to work up a sweat on the way to the first switchback. From there, the trail follows the contours of the hills and gradually increases in elevation until it reaches its highest point at the top of the peak. The views of the Pacific Ocean from this spot are spectacular!

Solstice Canyon CA

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Abalone Cove

Abalone Cove Shoreline Park is one of those coastal gems that you just can’t help but fall in love with. It’s home to a 109-acre ecological preserve with important natural marine resources, tide pools, and two promontories: Portuguese Point and Inspiration Point.

It’s also an easy 30-minute hike from the parking lot to the beach, so you can get your nature fix without going too far out of your way or putting in too much effort! But if you’re looking for something more challenging, go for the Portuguese Point Loop—it’ll take about an hour, but it’ll be worth it when you make it back to the top with all kinds of new friends and memories.

Abalone Cove CA

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Eaton Canyon Trail

Welcome to Eaton Canyon! This 190-acre zoological, botanical, and geological nature preserve is open daily from sunrise to sunset. The trailhead is at the north end of the parking lot, and there are plenty of well-marked paths to choose from. If you’re looking for a shorter hike, head up to the junction marked waterfall. But if you’re feeling extra ambitious, keep hiking along one of the many other trails and see what you find!

Eaton Canyon Trail CA

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Takeaway

Hiking in the hills and canyons of Los Angeles is an activity that could easily be enjoyed on a regular basis. We’ve covered everything from Bronson Canyon to Topanga State Park, and each trail was uniquely beautiful in its own way. Whether you’re looking for a challenging hike or a leisure Sunday walk, Los Angeles has something for everyone.

Not only is it great exercise, but it’s also a chance to connect with nature and relax outside of your home. Plus, it’s free! What doesn’t get better than that? So grab some friends (or go solo!) and experience the many trails Los Angeles has to offer.  And if you need garage door repairs, look no further than Armour Garage Door & Gates! They have excellent customer service, reasonable prices, and all the knowledge needed to repair any garage door issue you may have. In need to repair your garage door? Contact Armour Garage Door & Gates!

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