LA Getaway: Arroyo Seco Gabrielino Trail

LA Getaway: Arroyo Seco Gabrielino Trail

Gregory Han
Feb 25, 2008

Now that the weather has finally cleared up, we can share one of our favourite daytime getaways. The Arroyo Seco Gabrielino National Recreation Trail is just a hop-skip-and-a-jump away from most Angelenos, and offers an opportunity to connect with nature without going all that far...


Just north of Pasadena near the Jet Propulsion Lab, meandering up to the beautiful confines of one of Southern California's most beautiful oak, sycamore and bay-filled trails, the Arroyo Seco once led up to Camp Oak Wilde, a rustic resort constructed in 1911, where hikers and horsemen stayed a night or two up on the way up to Mt. Wilson. During the 1920s, a road was constructed and automobilists traveled the Arroyo to Camp Oak Wilde, and you can still find some of the foundations of the long-lost vacation dwellings.

But what's still there for everyone to enjoy is a lush environment filled with wildflowers, towering oak trees, wild berries (which I once foolishly ate and escaped without consequence), and wild animals like hawks, salamanders, trout, and even mountain lions and bears. And if you hike far back enough, you'll be rewarded with a surprise I won't ruin. Directions below.

Directions to trailhead: From the Foothill Freeway (210) in Pasadena, take the Arroyo Boulevard/ Windsor Avenue exit. Head north on Arroyo, which almost immediately becomes Windsor, and travel 0.75 mile. Just before Windsor's intersection with Ventura Street, turn into the parking lot on your left. From the small lot you can look down into the bottom of the Arroyo Seco and see the Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

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