Most of the land along Mulholland is made of vast open spaces like Topanga State Park and Malibu Creek State Park. But, there’s that strip of Mulholland people have heavily populated which straddles Sherman Oaks/Studio City on the valley side and Beverly Hills/West Hollywood/Hollywood on the city side. For example, Beverly Crest has 13 times the people per square mile than Unincorporated Santa Monica Mountains.
The people who live along populated Mulholland drive over the hill and back again. Back and forth, back and forth. In a video for Pacific Standard Time, Ice Cube weighs the good and the bad about Los Angeles, “The bad: the traffic. Each freeway has its own personality. The 405, bougie traffic. The 110, ha ha, that’s gangster traffic right there. There’s a difference, you gotta know where you at.” So, where are you at in canyon traffic? Who are those Angelinos?
But, the more relevant question is who are the Angelinos hiking in those canyons instead of driving over them?
Well, I’ll offer that my friends and I used to come here a lot in high school, partly because many of my friends lived down the block, but mostly because we needed oxygen to breath. I’ll bet the neighbors called us hooligans. We thought we’d found freedom.
There’s probably something interesting to say about the fact that Warren Beatty donated this 20-acre parcel of land in the 80’s, but I’m flooded with nostalgia and the strong belief that Los Angeles does offer refuges when we’re smart enough to brake for them.
For more information about Dixie Canyon, check here: http://www.lamountains.com/parks.asp?parkid=6
The trek to the Radio Towers from the Stough Canyon Nature Center delivers 360 views of Tujunga, the Valley, and Downtown. We were there on a cloudy day, but I could’ve sworn I even saw the ocean over the Santa Monica Mountains. I’d go back to double check, but my muscles are still sore. It’s a good thing there were chaise lounges set up along the trail for snacks and breaks.
A fire road off Stunt Road, about a mile south of Mulholland, leads you to the 2163 foot summit of Calabasas Peak. While there’s a 1000 foot elevation gain, it’s a fairly easy stroll. I’d highly recommended this on a clear day for far-reaching views of both the Valley and the Santa Monica Mountains.
Its close proximity to Hollywood has made this unusual rock formation quite popular in film and tv with appearances in MJ’s “Black or White” music video and in the Flinstones Movie, to name a couple. The formations are part of the San Andreas Fault and are historically important because of the several Indian sites that can be found across the 932 acre park. For more info check here: http://parks.lacounty.info/Parkinfo.asp?URL=cms1_033383.asp&Title=Vasquez