Past Meetup

Western Backbone Trail via Mishe Mokwa Trailhead

This Meetup is past

9 people went

Location image of event venue


Cross-Posted with Weekday Trailblazers

A colleague from Amgen will be visiting from England, and has asked to do a hike on Saturday, February 20th. This is one with spectacular scenery, a reasonable length, and a bit (but not too steep) elevation. We'll do a "lollipop" on the Backbone Trail, on the south side of Yerba Buena (with spectacular views of the ocean, and a bit more shade), across the road from the Mishe Mokwa loop.

To get to the Mishe Mokwa trailhead from the 101 / Westlake Boulevard interchange, drive south on Westlake Boulevard 7 miles, and make a slight right onto Mulholland. In 4/10 miles, turn right onto Little Sycamore Canyon Road. In 3.9 miles (the road will change names to Yerba Buena along the way), you'll see the parking area straddling the road. The Mishe Mokwa trailhead is 30 minutes from the 101 / Westlake Boulevard interchange, even if you drive like a maniac. We'll set out at 9 a.m. sharp, so plan on arriving earlier than that :-)

Depending on the number of people hiking, we may want to marshal cars at a lot on Little Sycamore just off of Mulholland ( I will leave this up to you to arrange with your friends.

The hiking route is 6 miles, on the nose, with an elevation change of 1,450 feet, with the highest point in the middle of the hike. No part of the hike involves steep climbs, though there is a brief, somewhat steep, unavoidable descent.

In addition to the stunning views of the ocean and Channel Islands, we'll get some great views of the wilderness between Sandstone Peak and Serrano Canyon, Circle X, Boney Peak, etc. We'll also see the abandoned Triunfo Lookout (below), the AT&T microwave installation, and some spectacular architecture. Triunfo Lookout (abandoned tower structure)

Weather is forecast to be a high of 65, and sunny. Should be very nice! Nevertheless, bring plenty of water and a snack to eat at the Triunfo Lookout. There is a bit of poison oak on the Yellow Hill Trail spur, but we'll point it out so you can avoid it.

We'll join friends from Weekday Trailblazers after the hike for lunch. Exactly where will be discussed during the hike, but could be Canyon Grill (on Kanan near the trout ponds), or the usual places at 101 & Westlake Boulevard in Westlake Village.

Please Note: We may have too many hikers to be accommodated in the Mishe Mokwa trailhead parking area, as this is a popular spot for hiking on weekends (though we'll be doing the little-travelled southern route).

As one alternative, please consider car-pooling from your neighborhood with friends.

As another alternative, there is a large pull-off on Little Sycamore Canyon Road ( on the way to the Mishe Mokwa Trailhead; if you would stop there on your way, and park, or pick up any folks from the group who could share a ride with you, that would be fabulous.

The pull-off ( is 2/10 of a mile from the Mulholland-to-Little Sycamore Canyon Road turn, and is on the left-hand, or southern, side of the road. If you're watching your odometer, that's also 6/10 of a mile from the 23/Decker-to-Mulholland turn (from 23/Decker to the Little Sycamore Canyon Road turn-off is 4/10 of a mile).

(click on the image to see a larger version)

Again, please be prompt in arriving at the Mishe Mokwa Trailhead by 8:45. With a stop at the marshaling spot, you will need to have left the 101 / Westlake Village Boulevard interchange by 8:00 to get there on time.