Los Angeles 411: Topanga State Park, Los Angeles
For those craving a physical challenge while experiencing nature’s splendor this summer, Topanga State Park provides 36 miles of trails with cliff vistas and spectacular vantages of the Pacific Ocean as well as overlooks of dramatic canyons—all on Santa Monica Mountain terrain.
Situated on 900 acres, “the world’s largest wildland area within the boundaries of a major city”, Topanga State Park is an outdoor playground for hikers, mountain bikers and equestrians. The trails of Topanga State Park offer a varying degree of terrain difficulty accommodating both the casual hiker and the marathon trainer.
An attractive escape from the smog and the bustle, Topeka State Park is perfect for the day hiker as well as the weekend camper. Near to several camp areas are delightful evening dining spots, such as Froggy's Topanga Fish Market or Abuelita's Mexican Restaurant.
One of the highlights of the trail experience is Eagle Rock, one of the many boulder outcrops, which prominently stands over the terrain and provides breathtaking panoramic views. Full of sunshine and wildflowers, hikers should be aware of the lack of shade on the wide open grasslands and be sure to bring sunscreen, sunglasses and water.
According to the Topanga State Park web site, “from Pacific Coast Highway, travel north on Topanga Canyon Boulevard, pass the post office at the center of town, then turn right on Entrada Road. Keep to the left at every opportunity until you reach the park's main parking lot (about one mile). From the Ventura Freeway (101), exit at Topanga Canyon Boulevard, drive south over the crest of the mountains and proceed three miles to Entrada Road and turn left.” Happy trails!