Sunday, August 20, 2006

Verdugo Mountain via Beaudry North Fire Road

To relax after the Mount Disappointment 50k while also preparing for my next race (the Run to the Top of Mount Baldy) I decided this morning to run up the Beaudry North Fire Road to Verdugo Mountain. It's not a long trail, but offers a good 1200 feet of climbing in almost 3 miles, for a round trip of nearly 6 miles: a healthy and relaxing way to begin one's Sunday.

Like many trails in Los Angeles, Verdugo Mountain doesn't look like much at its trailhead. Judging by this inauspicious-looking razor-wire fence, you'd never know a beautiful trail awaits you just up the road. The trailhead is hidden away in a Glendale neighborhood, near the Oakmont Country Club. (MapQuest "1300 Beaudry Boulevard" to get directions from your location.)

Climb around this ugly yellow metal gate, and you're good to go!






The trail begins fairly steeply, but levels off a bit as it continues up the hill. Essentially, it's a series of gradually-ascending inclines, totally runnable the whole way. It seems as though just as I'm getting winded from the climbing, the trail will level out a bit and give me a bit of relief. The surface is dirt fire-road, except for a bit of asphalt at the very top. (You'll know you're at the summit when you reach a series of ugly antennae, so thoughtfully erected by a few of our local radio stations.)

At the top, views of Montrose and Glendale spread out below you on one side, Los Angeles and Burbank on the other. Today's visibility wasn't great, but on a clear day even the skyscrapers of downtown Los Angeles show up crisply on the horizon, and I've heard you can sometimes see to the ocean! On one particularly magical run last February, I left the trailhead as rain was falling, and about a mile up, snowflakes covered the trail. Snow! In Los Angeles! It made my week! I didn't have a camera along for that run, so you'll just have to take my word for it. Or give it a try yourself sometime, on some future rainy day.

See you on the trail!
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3 Comments:

Anonymous nicki said...

I just went on this hike today with my husband. It was absolutely beautiful! Any idea how many miles it is?

9:57 PM  
Blogger Ashley said...

Hi Nicki,
It's a little under three miles from the gate to the summit where the radio towers are, for a bit under six miles round-trip.

You can go a whole lot farther than that if you want, though, by continuing straight on the fire road rather than turning left to go up to the radio towers. A full map of trails and fire roads is available here. Zoom in on the pdf file to the specific geographic area that interests you.

7:29 AM  
Anonymous nicki said...

Thank you so much! I had been looking online forever trying to find a map of the trails around here.

10:39 AM  

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