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So, we were profusely sweating in the 100 degree weather. So, we were caked in dirt. So, we were very, very lost. However, as I looked out onto the city of Los Angeles and the 3.89 million habitants, I felt a sense of serendipity.

This week’s Secret of SoCal is the Mt. Hollywood Trail

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As my friends and I turned onto Los Feliz to drive up to the Griffith Observatory, we were beyond excited for the anticipated hike. Griffith Park is home to 53 miles of hiking trails. These interconnected trails curve around the mountains and lead to numerous scenic locations. The vast trails allow one to see all the way from the San Gabriel Mountains to the Pacific Ocean.

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We had our sights set on the Mt. Hollywood Trail, a winding path that leads to the top of the 1,625 foot Mt. Hollywood Peak, the second highest peak in Griffith Park. A huge disclaimer I have for everyone before embarking on this journey is that the Mt. Hollywood Trail does not take you to the iconic Hollywood sign…well it doesn’t take you there directly. We found a way…

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At the inception of the hike, there is a pleasant ascent along the narrow ridgeline that divides the Vermont Canyon. The path travels across the top of the Vermont Canyon Road tunnel and about a mile out reaches a four-way junction on the shoulder of Mt. Hollywood. Once my friends and I reached this point, we asked a passerby which way led to the Hollywood Sign. She laughed and told us we were on the wrong mountain.

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Confused as ever, we continued to ascend towards Dante’s View but took a slight detour. I was a bit confused (and by a bit confused I mean highly concerned) when I noticed we were descending for a while. Next thing I knew the path turned into rocks. You know what they say? When in the San Gabriel Mountains!

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We may or may not have done a bit of trailblazing in order to complete our mission of seeing the Hollywood Sign. However, two out of the four of us were Washintonians so in between discussing the Seahawks score, they led us through rocks and bushes. Eventually, we reconnected with the main trail! We rounded the last part of the hill to finally reach our destination, also known as the Hollywood Sign.

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Although there was a fence blocking us from the actual sign, I was equally in awe of the Hollywood Sign. When standing close, the size of the letters are unlike anything you’ve ever seen. I was slightly scared I’d drop my phone while trying to take a picture over the fence, but it was totally worth it.

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This week’s Secret of SoCal really made me appreciate where I live and the beauty that’s just around every corner in Southern California.

Be sure to check back next week for another Secret of SoCal.

And remember -Take Care of This Moment.

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