Fishing at Big Santa Anita Creek
Just 16 miles from downtown Los Angeles, Big Santa Anita Canyon is a great destination to get out and about. Many locals have maintained weekend cabins here for more than 100 years. While there are a few rentals available, the park closes at 10 p.m. year round, and an Adventure Pass must be bought and displayed to remain parked in the area. The park is easily accessed by Highway 210. Take the Santa Anita exit and drive until the road ends at the park. There is a historic pack station in the park that still sells food and sundries. Get your Adventure Pass at the Chantry Flats Ranger Station along with a map. Take First Water Trail to Santa Anita Creek and enjoy a relaxing day's fishing.
Chantry Flats Ranger Station
P.O. Box 217
Sierra Madre, CA 91025
Hiking in Griffith Park
A favorite destination for many local hikers, Griffith Park offers more than 50 miles of hiking trails, fire roads and bridle paths, as well as the iconic Griffith Park Observatory. One of the most popular trails goes from the Observatory parking lot to the peak of Mount Hollywood, the tallest peak in the park, where you can take in the entire L.A. Basin. This area was filmed extensively in television through the 1960s, and the southeast corner of the park is still home to the Batcave of the 1960s' Adam West Batman television show. Smoking is not permitted in the park, which is home to lots of local wildlife, including quail, coyotes, foxes, rattlesnakes and deer.
4730 Crystal Springs Drive
Los Angeles, CA 90027
Camping in Angeles National Forest
Red Box Ranger Station is easily accessible from the city, again using Highway 210 to escape to the east of the city. Exit to Highway 2 and follow it for 14 miles until you reach Red Box. Red Box functions as a trail head for several excellent hiking trails, but if you really want to get away from the city, head for the West Fork campground. Be sure to purchase your Adventure Pass parking permit as well as your campfire permit at the ranger station before heading off on the trail. This campsite is open year-round, although the ranger station may be difficult to access if there is snow. The trail to the campground goes through a canyon, giving you the sensation of being completely removed from the big city. The San Gabriel River is next to the campground, offering swimming and fishing in the warmer months and the campsite is an excellent home base for lots of pleasant day hikes, making it perfect for a long weekend out of doors.
Red Box Ranger Station at Angeles National Forest
701 N. Santa Anita Ave.
Arcadia, CA 91006