WHERE: PACIFIC PALISADES--on Vereda de la Montura--off of Palisades Drive (reachable from Sunset Blvd.
WHEN: August 22, at 3 PM to 7 PM
LENGTH: 6.8 miles total, takes about 3 1/2 to 4 hours with half hour stop at the peak
DIFFICULTY: 4 out of 10
Here we will start at the condos of Palisades Highlands, cruise through the shady oak-filled canyon past the two caves on the hillside (one is an excellent improvised recording studio), up to the east Topanga fireroad. From there the trail gets wide open and we follow the ridge top to Eagle Rock (elevation: 1957'). There we will have views of the entire San Fernando Valley and the Angeles Forest, and probably the ocean and Catalina Island.
The hike length is 3.4 miles each way, and elevation gain is 1400 feet. Therefore, the total hike is 6.8 miles.
BRING: at least Two quarts of water, a hat, comfortable shoes.
DOGS: because this is a state park, no dogs are allowed. Rangers hand out $200 tickets here. (I don't know about cats on a leash, though)
CELL COVERAGE: sometimes works, so you will be able to receive faxes while hiking...
DIRECTIONS: From the 405 freeway, take the 10 freeway west. It becomes Pacific Coast Highway. Follow PCH north/west around 5 miles until you reach Sunset Blvd. Turn right (there is a Von's market there). A quarter mile up hill is Palisades Drive. Turn left and go 1 1/2 miles to the first left. That is Vereda de la Montura. This road soon ends at a gate. Park along Vereda anywhere between the gate and Palisades Drive. The trailhead sign saying "Topanga State Park" is on the north side of the road.
ALTERNATE DIRECTIONS: If traffic reports say PCH is jammed, take the 405 to Sunset, and take Sunset west all the way to Palisades Drive, which is 1/4 mile before Sunset hits the beach. Then turn right, going uphill on Palisades Drive to the Vereda de la Montura trailhead.