**Remember - Rain cancels all hikes**
Saturday, December 19, 2015 - Placerita Canyon with 3 Hike Length Options
Option 1 - Easy: We will start at the Nature Center and hike the Placerita Canyon trail to the Walker Ranch area. Then you can return back the same route to the Nature Center for a nice flat 5 miles roundtrip.
Visit the Nature center on the way out - see*NC* below.
Option 2 - Moderate (for Distance and some gain in the second part): We continue from the end of Placerita Canyon and explore the hills of the East Walker Ranch Open Space area. On the way back, after passing under Placerita Canyon Road, via a tunnel, you emerge on the North side of the road, near the trailhead for Golden Valley Open Space. From here, you can return to the Walker Ranch and then backtrack along the Placerita Canyon trail to the Nature center. You have clocked 9 miles roundtrip.
Option 3 - Moderate +++ (for more Distance and gain): First we hike Placerita Canyon and explore the hills of East Walker Ranch Open Space before arriving at Golden Valley trailhead.Following this, we show you the trails and hills of Golden Valley Open Space, overlooking Placerita canyon, returning the same way to add another 3 miles. Then we head back to Walker Ranch and follow the Placerita canyon trail back to the Nature center, for an impressive 12 miles roundtrip.
Some"Extra Credit", if you need it: Those still not satisfied with 12 miles can add some extra mileage and more gain. Ask your leader to point out another short trail in the hills of Golden Valley to add on by yourself. Return as in Option 3 above.
*NC* Why not visit the remodeled Nature Center while you are right there! After returning to the parking lot, if you have not been inside recently, be sure to check out the remodeled Placerita Nature Center. It has some excellent modern flora/fauna exhibits and many live local animal exhibits (e.g. rattlers, toads, raven, hawk and vulture)!
Directions to Placerita Canyon Nature Center trailhead from 5 Freeway: From the I-5 freeway heading North toward Castaic, merge on to the 14 Freeway (Palmdale / Lancaster). After 5.8 miles, take Exit#3 (Placerita Canyon Road). Turn right (East/ North) at the bottom of the ramp and go 1.5 miles on Placerita Canyon Road until you see a Placerita Nature center sign on the right. Turn right into the park and meet the group in the first lot on the right.
Meet at 7.45AM for a 8:00AM SHARP departure up the trail.
Dogs: OK, but must be on a leash at all times. Due to number of other people and dogs on this trail, they must be well behaved around other dogs and people with hiking poles.
Adventure Pass: Not required.
BRING: Hiking Poles if you have them, lunch/snacks, at least 2 -3L of water and some electrolytes, hat and sunscreen. If chilly, an extra layer is advisable in the morning. For safety reasons, wear hiking shoes/boots with good tread - No flip-flops or tennis shoes, please!