Monday, April 7, 2014

Hike 2014.014 -- Mt. Lee, Griffith Park, Los Angeles

Hiked Sunday, March 16. Hiked even before the previous one I posted, but still not the earliest of my year's hikes that I need to blog. But I figured I'd go with this one since I had little to say and relatively few pictures to go through. This was a weekend after work hike. Wasn't feeling all that energetic, and obviously I lost the light long before I finished. If I do this hike closer to the summer solstice, I could make it all the way to Burbank Peak and back, though probably would still be finishing in the dark.

Since this hike was taken even before we reached spring, the day light didn't last nearly that long. It did start in daylight, however, from the Griffith Observatory. From there, I headed up the Charlie Turner Trail (at the north end of the Observatory Lot). Snapped one shot from near the south end of the lot, then another from near the same spot, but zoomed further in.

Like the previous hike I posted, this was one of the first with my Tamron 70-300mm zoom, so I played around with it quite a bit. As noted in my previous post, this hike left me very impressed with my new zoom.

The top picture was taken with ISO 1600 but a shutter speed of just 1/8th of a second. It's zoomed in just a bit, to about 95mm, and the aperture is nearly wide open, at f/6.3. Nonetheless, the result is quite sharp, considering I am shooting without the aid of a tripod. I'm just standing, trying to stay steady, but without any complicating apparatus.

The shot shouldn't be possible, except that the lens' built-in image stabiliza-tion clearly works very well.

BTW, the thing that I like so much about the Charlie Turner trail is you get that nice view of the Observatory, with the downtown skyline as a backdrop. I've shot it many times, but I still think it's a pretty iconic view.

From the Charlie Turner Trail, I passed behind Mt. Hollywood, and took the set of "high" trails that dive behind, around, and in front of Mt. Bell and Mt. Chapel, and worked my way to the west, eventually joining the paved Mt. Lee Road then winds up behind the Hollywood Sign.

After spending a few moments there and helping a few tourists with pictures of themselves above Hollywood, I began the walk back to the Observatory. I never time this walk because I'm always stopping for so many pictures, but now I'm thinking it's a three hour hike roundtrip, with no stops, or typically a 3 1/2 hour hike. I usually figure the distance is about seven miles roundtrip, given the time it takes to walk. That probably makes it another 1.5 miles roundtrip if you add Burbank Peak.

Just rough estimates, anyway. It's a pretty long hike, though not necessarily difficult if the weather is not too hot, and/or if you have enough to drink in the summer.


  1. 70-300mm telephoto, fully extended. Exposed for the moon, so the slice of cityscape (of Glendale) is pretty dim. Most of the time, when you see a moon and cityscape, it's a double exposure or otherwise manipulated in post-production. I don't know how to do that. But, importantly, I don't *want* to do that, because it strikes me as cheating.

    Streaks of clouds along the horizon, which show up on the face of the moon, too.