04 November 2012

Wildwood Canyon Park

Burbank, Verdugo Mountains

Locate the trail head.

I headed down to hike with the geeks who planned on another attack up the steep trail that climbs from Harvard up to the communications site toward the top of the mountain. It is a short, steep, trail with a bit of a crowd in the morning until the heat gets to be a bit much. We start climbing when it is quite warm enough up the first of three trails that leave the road and head up, quickly catching a bit of view out over Burbank.

The golf course below and city beyond.
The trail quickly gains a view of the nearby golf course and city beyond.

glancing up the mountain
One of the other trails coming up to join the high route up ahead.

hawk showing the lazy way up
I looked down quite far to see a hawk that quickly climbed to far above just riding the thermals. That certainly is an easier way to gain elevation.

The trail rests a few times in its climb, and even loses a few feet at a couple points. Two other routes from the road join as I travel along it. At the last, there is a map, but it is zoomed in so far that it is not particularly useful even for the nearby trails that would make a very comfortable day's hike. The trail splits into a tight bunch of switchbacks along the ridge line and a single stretch out and back along the south face and we took the tight switchbacks. By this time, it is getting a bit on the hot side and the crowds have thinned dramatically. Sugar bushes provide welcome shade at two spots, but mostly it is just hot.

Verdugo Mountains
More trails along the top of the Verdugo Mountains, these leading to Stough Park.

the last almost at the top
The last of our group coming up to the top, although one is quite far back.

Los Angeles city center
A look down the Los Angeles River to the island of skyscrapers at the main city center.

We hang out for a while at the top taking it all in and chatting. Mostly chatting. After a while, we head back down. I managed to convince some of the group to try going down the first route, which takes us up a few feet past a picnic table and a small tree that doesn't really belong at that elevation but may provide shade for the table if someone keeps it watered. From there, the trail is wide as a road as it wiggles downward toward the pavement below.

first trail down from the high route
The trail down to the top of the road and the flat with a picnic table.

Once down in the canyon, it is much cooler with a nice breeze. There are trees, but there is paving. Much of the route offers opportunity for walking on dirt or grass instead of blacktop, so it isn't so bad. The road passes a few picnic areas as it goes. We get down to the bottom as the last of the rest of the group reached the bottom even though we went along the longer route. Finished with the hike, most headed off for a bit of lunch.

©2012 Valerie Norton
Posted 9 Nov 2012

No comments: