Thursday, December 3, 2015

Look to my left and I see the Hollywood sign

Running in Griffith Park

Party in the USA was on a loop through my mind as I ran up to the Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles over the Thanksgiving Break. This is my favorite run in the world. My sister and her family live about a mile from Griffith Park, so the run began on relatively flat city streets. I played a game of counting the priuses that I saw parked on these streets. Not surprisingly, the count was much higher than what we see on the east coast. 

The view from the base of the east trail.
Every morning that we were in LA, we woke up early and ran over to Griffith Park. There are two trails that go to the top, both about the same length and difficulty. At the trailhead, there is a wonderful little coffee shop/wagon that provided caffeine after each of these runs. I could go on about how good the coffee and pastries were, but just trust me - they were awesome. The west (left) trail presented a couple challenging switchbacks early on, but then flattens out briefly before meeting up with the east trail for the final climb to the observatory. The east (right) trail challenges a runner with non-stop elevation. Both surfaces are packed dirt, easy on the legs but not the dusty kind that gets kicked up into your lungs. 

View of LA from the observatory

The views from both trails (especially the west) were fantastic. Looking out, was the skyline of downtown LA, followed by the ocean out in the distance. Looking west, the Hollywood sign was right there. The elevation did not let up, providing a solid challenge for legs and lungs. There was even a water fountain at the top. Every time I visit LA, I will take advantage of this great run. There is nothing quite like it around here.
View of the mountains from the observatory

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