Tuesday, September 18, 2012
Hike 2012.065 -- Mineral Wells to Mt. Lee
This road turned out to be Griffith Park Road. I followed it for a winding mile and a half or so, going up, then down. Finally, as I neared what turned out to be Mineral Wells Road, there were some cars parked on the side of the road. A trail access was to the west of them, so I parked and began my hike. A large sign for Mineral Wells picnic area was right near my car.
Tom LaBonge map I have mentioned before.
It's a steep trail, gaining about 150 feet in maybe 1/8 of a mile. As I climbed, I could see Burbank and Glendale behind me. I also climbed above a golf course, and a driving range.
visited on a previous hike.
Ahead of me, in the late afternoon glare, I could see Mt. Lee and Cahuenga Peak.
The trail that heads along the ridge line to the southwest of Mt. Lee continues for about 2/5ths of a mile. There are a couple of places with substantial drop offs and scenic views to the south. In several spots, the Mulholland Trail is right below you. It's junction with the Hollyridge Trail also occurs far below your perch.
Just where the road makes a hairpin turn and makes the final run to the summit of Mt. Lee, there's a monument and a somewhat-hidden trail that goes to the west. That one heads on to Cahuenga Peak. From there, you could also continue at least to Burbank Peak. That was ground I also covered in a previous hike.
Hard to be certain on the mileage. If you add up all the segments and double it, you'd be at about 4 miles. My suspicion is the total mileage was probably between 4.5 and 5 miles roundtrip. Although going to Mt. Lee from Mineral Wells was probably one mile shorter each way than going from the Griffith Observatory, I think the degree of difficulty is considerably higher. That's a pretty long and strenuous climb from Mineral Wells up to the ridge line.
The main point of this hike was to scout possible locations to photograph the impending arrival of the space shuttle Endeavour in Los Angeles (Now scheduled for Friday--postponed a day because of weather). It is considered likely that a flyby of the Hollywood Sign will be part of the victory lap, and I am going to try to get some good pictures of the shuttle and the Observatory on Thursday (or later, if the arrival turns out to be delayed).