Rocky Peak Park in Simi Valley was one of my first hikes outside of the Santa Monica Mountains, way back in 2012. On that day I started on Hummingbird Trail and never actually made it to the peak. I returned on this day, starting right off the 118 Freeway on Rocky Peak Trail, and this time made it to the summit. Overall, an enjoyable day. Read more
On this day I hiked in two areas separated by only a couple miles of road, but very different in character. Parma Park has a maze of trails running through what was once a goat ranch. All the trails are marked only by signs that read, “Trail”. Santa Barbara Botanic Garden has several miles of trails, very well marked, and is much more manicured, especially in the heart of the gardens near the entrance. Obviously, the latter is more crowded. I enjoyed both parks equally.
Call this one a beach/city hike. I explored two lagoons in Marina Del Rey and the Venice Canals and Beach Boardwalk in Venice. It’s a different feel when one hikes in an area with a high volume of people and their unpleasant by-products – noise, garbage, cigarette smoke, moving vehicles, etc. Humans can be cruel, thoughtless and even violent. There is an ever present sense of danger. On the other hand, walking on city streets filled with people also gives one a surge of energy. There’s so much happening, so much to see, so much input and creativity – from fantastic architecture to bizarre graffiti to joyful human interaction and fun. I had a great day today, but next week it’s back to the wilds.