Temescal Canyon Hike

9 Apr

This past Sunday, the hiking group hit the 4-mile Temescal Canyon Loop (or Temescal Gateway Park), which is now competing for my favorite trail with last week’s, Malibu Creek. For me, what makes a great hiking trail are shaded areas mixed with sunny, trees (lots of trees), beautiful views, a little bit of a challenge, and a sense of loneliness. I’m just not big on crowds, especially in the middle of nature’s beauty.

Temescal had all of these. Especially the views – from the top of Skull Rock, you could see from downtown Los Angeles to the beaches of Malibu and Santa Monica. This is a trail that just makes you realize that you love living in Southern California.

We took the loop trail “backwards” or counter-clockwise [here’s a PDF map]. Instead of heading up the switchbacks on the left, keep walking towards Stewart Hall, the building at the very end (pictured below), and begin the trail on its left-hand side.

Once you take a little side trip to Skull Rock, you’ll work your way back to the bottom with the ocean in front of you, then end with scents of sage. Plus, this is the easier way up, although no way up is easy in my opinion. I would definitely say this is a moderate to strenuous hike, depending on your fitness level. If you’re looking for even more of a workout, take the trail the “usual” route – clockwise – and start at the marked trailhead on the left. I suggest you begin before 11am to beat most of the crowd though.

And joggers? You should realize when a trail is not made for you. Some paths of Temescal are very slim and if you don’t want to slow down as I walk by, perhaps you should just stop and run in place, instead of crashing into me and my pack. Okay? Thanks.

Here’s Joseph, acting as our hiking guide and navigator.

This is one of the multicolored cabins or houses or… I don’t know what, that looked like it had a face as I walked by so I told it to smile.

This is part of a large grassy area, shaded by native sycamores. Probably a nice spot for a medium-sized wedding or reception.

Below is part of the side trip to Skull Rock. This is the area where joggers believe there’s enough room to zip past you, but there isn’t, so we wish they wouldn’t.

Joseph and Brendan on top of Skull Rock:

Justin and I stuck around in the back because we were about to die from walking up and up. Granted, he had a headache and I just had… small lungs? a weak heart? horrible fitness?

Jeanette and Vania taking in the views.

I had Joseph snap my photo for proof that I made it to the top of this rock that didn’t look at all like a skull. And wow, check out my freckles.


2 Responses to “Temescal Canyon Hike”

  1. Andy April 14, 2009 at 8:15 am #

    I really like the picture above the picture of you. It’s so bright and calm. I also checked out your website, love the pictures, and especially the music. Take Care


  1. Mishe Mokwa Trail to Sandstone Peak « Voir Venir Blog - April 29, 2009

    […] may just take the cake. I think. I’m really indecisive with these things. Malibu Creek and Temescal are tough […]

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