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Topanga State Park
The world's largest in-city wildland, Topanga State Park is located in the Santa Monica Mountains, the range that divides greater Los Angeles in two parts, the San Fernando Valley and the L.A. Basin. The park offers 11,525 acres of varied terrain and 36 miles of trails through native chaparral, live oaks and grass lands. Popular with hikers, mountain bikers, geocachers, birders, plein air painters and perfect for horseback riding the park features large sandstone formations, sweeping views of the transverse mountain ranges and the Greater Los Angeles as well as ocean and island views. Numerous species of wild animals reside in the park.
Temescal Trail takes about seven hours to hike and runs from Reseda Blvd. in San Fernado Valley all the way to the Sunset Blvd. in Pacific Palisades on the coast.
Loop Trail is most popular, as it takes only two and a half hours to hike and goes past Eagle Springs and Eagle-Elephant Rock, a large sandstone cliff that looks like the back of an eagle from one side and a head of an elephant from the other.
You can walk to the top of Eagle-Elephant Rock where you may sit down and meditate, watch the fog roll in from the bay and the sun or moon rise and set.
Backbone Trail, aka Will Rogers Trail in Topanga State Park, starts at the South-East end of Topanga State Park at Will Rogers Park. It goes on all through Santa Monica Mountains to Point Mugu.
Mulholland Drive runs along the North boarder of the park as unpaved dirt road from Topanga Canyon Blvd. to Sepulveda Blvd. and 405 FWY. It is popular with hikers, horseback riders and mountain bikers because it offers sweeping valley views and is well graded.
East Topanga Fire Road takes you from Paseo Miramar in Pacific Palisades by Parker Mesa past Trippet Ranch Park Entrance to Loop Trail and Eagle-Elephant Rock in the middle of the park. It takes about four and a half hours to hike it one way.
Santa Ynez Trail takes you from E. Topanga Fire Road through an oak forest to a seasonal waterfall
Topanga Canyon Inn Bed and Breakfast is located within walking distance of one of the Topanga State Park's entries. Guests may enjoy views of the park and the sounds of nature from the bed and breakfast's living rooms, balconies and decks, as well as hike into the park for more. Eagle-Elephant Rock is only 30 minute hike from the inn. You may watch sunset from the top of this sandstone cliff and just have enough time to get back to the inn before dark. You may get on your mountain bike right from the Inn and head into the park where the trails range from challenging to easy. Topanga Creek Bicycles has excellent mountain bikes for rent and sale. They organize free Satuday group rides through the park. Los Angeles Horseback Riding will take you for rides in the park.