For a more curated experience check out trail guides from our partner publishers.
Best Hikes Near Los Angeles
by Allen Riedel and Monique Riedel (Falcon Guides)
Hike through the lovely shaded splendor of Franklin Canyon, the quieter and more peaceful alternative to Runyon Canyon. Franklin Canyon is one of the most popular filming parks in Los Angeles; movie and television buffs will undoubtedly recognize some of the more prominent spots.
Best Easy Day Hikes: West Los Angeles
by Bryn Fox Pitterle (Falcon Guides)
This short but tranquil hike passes by Heavenly Pond beforeskirting the perimeter of the nineacre Franklin Canyon Lake,and then crossing back to finish the hike along the shores ofthe lake under shady tree canopies.
Los Angeles County: A Day Hiker's Guide
by John McKinney (The Trailmaster)
Despite frequent invasions of Hollywood film crews, Franklin Canyon on most days offers hikers, bird-watchers and nature lovers a tranquil retreat. The canyon is protected by Franklin Canyon Ranch, a National Park Service preserve perched atop the hills above Beverly Hills. It’s appeared in your living room a hundred times, but you probably don’t know its name. The many faces of Franklin Canyon can be seen almost daily on television. Moviemakers have found the canyon to be a convincing substitute for a wide variety of locales ranging from High Sierra forest to jungle lagoon. “Bonanza,” “Andy of Mayberry,” and countless other television shows have used the canyon as a stage.
60 Hikes within 60 Miles: Los Angeles
by Laura Randall (Menasha Ridge Press)
Beginning at a bucolic 3-acre reservoir and duck pond, this well-graded path winds through patches of oak forest before a gradual ascent leads to scenic views of Santa Monica and the Pacific Ocean. You will see pockets of development along the way, but heavy woodland and chaparral-covered slopes make this hike seem deeper in the wilderness than it actually is. Looking for a way to distribute water brought from the Owens Valley to Southern California, William Mulholland and the Department of Water and Power created a reservoir and power system in Franklin Canyon in the early 1900s. Luckily for today’s hikers, this move helped prevent further development of the canyon, which today is surrounded by the densely populated neighborhoods of Coldwater Canyon and Beverly Hills.
Afoot & Afield Los Angeles County
by Jerry Schad (Wilderness Press)
The Franklin Canyon Ranch park site, a part of the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area, belongs to a complex of open-space units straddling the Santa Monica Mountains crest. The other units include Upper Franklin Canyon Reservoir, Coldwater Canyon Park, Wilacre Park, and the Fryman Canyon Natural Area.
50 Trail Runs in Southern California
by Stan Swartz, Jim Wolff & Samir Shahin (The Mountaineers Books)
Franklin Canyon is a wonderful treasure between Hollywood and Beverly Hills. This island of open space has lush trails with forests of eucalyptus, oak, and sycamore trees. There are ponds with ducks, small streams, wildflowers galore, and city views. There are restrooms, telephones, and water at the beginning and at the turnaround point. This run has it all—you will not believe you are in the middle of the city.
Day Hikes around Los Angeles
by Robert Stone (Day Hike Books)
Franklin Canyon Park is a 605-acre wildlife refuge and tranquil retreat just minutes from Beverly Hills. The pastoral open space of Upper Franklin Canyon centers around Franklin Canyon Lake, a beautiful 9-acre man-made lake which is part of the California migratory bird route. The famous opening sequence of the Andy Griffith Show was filmed on the trail near the lake. This hike circles the serene lake under sycamores and oaks. To the east of the lake is Heavenly Pond. Circling the pond is the Wodoc Nature Trail, a wheelchair-accessible path through a natural riparian habitat.
In the lower portion of Franklin Canyon Park, combinethese two diverse trails for a perfect mix of challenginguphills, sweeping views, and leisurely flats. Hike the loop injust under 2 miles or extend your hike by adding a side tripto a viewpoint for a 2.6-mile round trip.
Day Hiking Los Angeles
by Casey Schreiner (The Mountaineers Books)
Hike around a historic reservoir that’s served as the backdrop in countless movies and television shows, from The Andy Grifﬁth Show to Salute Your Shorts and Twin Peaks. This beautiful, shaded stroll above the heart of Beverly Hills sits near the geographic center of the city of Los Angeles—which just so happens to be part of the world’s largest urban national park.
A quick vacation from the city noise. This is filled with surprises including Koi Pond. Great hike for the family, easy and full of fun. The Park Center offers history of area and a great place to start (clean restrooms)
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