The Best Difficult Hiking Trails in Los Angeles

Rocky Peak Park at sunset
Rocky Peak Park at sunset | Photo courtesy of Kevin Dinkel, Flickr

One of the best aspects of living in Los Angeles is its proximity to the great outdoors. The beach, mountains and desert are all within striking distance. Hiking is always an option, whether it’s the Santa Monica Mountains, Hollywood Hills or the mighty San Gabriel Mountains. Now that you’ve conquered easy hikes and stepped up to intermediate hikes, you’re ready to learn about nine of the best difficult hikes in L.A. County, which either span more than six miles or climb more than 1,000 feet of altitude. These hikes are sure to get your heart racing and may even require some recovery time (unless you frequent fire roads).

A few quick reminders:
1. Carry your cell phone with you in case of emergency. The signal can be limited in the mountains, but the phone is your best friend if you run into trouble.
2. Carry plenty of water because trails often offer little shade and it can get hot.
3. Wear sunscreen. Even if the sky starts overcast, sun often breaks through clouds.
4. Stay to the center of the trail to limit contact with plants like poison ivy and wildlife like rattlesnakes and tarantulas.

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Joshua Lurie

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