[Note: There are two starting points depending on your location, both going to same destination. The other one is in Tarzana. Please be sure to sign up for the correct version]
Time for another potluck! The Nike Missile base observation tower on San Vicente Mountain will provide a great location for a potluck sunset. We’ll also be treated to spectacular views of the Santa Monica Mountains, the San Fernando Valley, and the Los Angeles Basin to the ocean.
You will also take a glimpse into United States military history. Numerous self-guided interpretive displays explain how from 1956-1968, San Vicente Mountain was one of sixteen Los Angeles area Nike-Ajax supersonic anti-aircraft missile launch sites. Atop the radar tower we’ll also be treated to spectacular views of the Santa Monica Mountains, the Encino Reservoir, the San Fernando Valley, and the Los Angeles Basin to the ocean.
More history on our Facebook page
This 5-mile loop with 600 feet of net elevation gain makes for an excellent moderate hike along and around Mandeville Canyon and its ridges.
Doing this Sunday evening will provide time for last minute grocery shopping. There are picnic benches and facilities by the tower. No need to carry trash out.
Tarzana Trailhead Option – If you are coming from the San Fernando or Conejo Valleys you may want to check out our sister hike, The Tarzana Connection
This is a Potluck Event. Bring food/snacks and drink to share. Count on me to bring some white wine, strawberry daiquiris and table cloths. Please bring your own plates, cups, flatware, etc
Along the way we will experience in the following order:
Mandeville Canyon – a north-south notch in the Santa Monica Mountains
Westridge – we will climb a DWP service road out of the canyon to Westridge enjoying views of Canyonback Ridge and the San Gabriels to the east and the ocean behind us
San Vicente Mountain – Site of of the old Nike Missile base where we will enjoy our potluck atop an observation tower and picnic benches
Canyonback Ridge – here there is both a gradual fire road and a more adventurous single-track heading down the ridge. Guess which path we will take
Hollyhock Trail – There are nice views up and down the lush canyon as we descend 500 feet over 3/4 miles. A small sycamore grove at the bottom of this trail segues into the houses along Mandeville Canyon Road and back to the cars
Directions to Trailhead
From Sunset Boulevard, 2.3 miles west of the 405 freeway, head north on Mandeville Canyon Road. Drive 4.8 miles, and park on Mandeville Cyn as close to Garden Land Road as possible. The trailhead is at end of Garden Land.
There won’t be any parking left on Garden Land (its a very short residential street, as the map reveals) so don’t bother trying. Instead park on west (left) side of Mandeville as close to the corner as possible
There are neighborhood homes around the trailhead, please keep noise to a minimum…..until hike starts 😉
Trivia: Did you know Mandeville Canyon Rd is reputed to be the longest paved dead-end road in Los Angeles?
The Organizers and members of Hiking With Dean are not professional leaders, guides, or mountaineers. The function of the member or organizer is only to organize the trip. Each person who shows up for a trip/meetup (and their guest or guests) is responsible for his or her own safety. By attending a hike, or any other event organized by this group, you are acknowledging that you and any guests that you bring are aware of the risks, dangers and hazards associated with the activity and freely accept and fully assume all such risks, dangers and hazards, and further agree to release and discharge the Organizers, Members of the Hiking With Dean Meetup Group from and against any and all liability arising from your participation in the group activities per our ASSUMPTION OF RISK AND LIABILITY WAIVER and Section 6.2 of the Meetup.com Terms of Service.