To the trailhead
At the intersection of Hollywood Boule vard and Western Avenue in Hxsollywood, drive 0.5 miles west on Hollywood Boulevard to Bronson Avenue. Turn right (north) and continue 1.5 miles on Bronson Avenue (which merges with Canyon Drive) past Bronson Park to the end of the road. Park in the lot on the left.
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From the parking lot, hike back along the park road 100 feet to the trailhead on the left (east) side of the road. The trail gently climbs a quarter mile to the caves backed by granite cliffs. From here you may walk through the caves and around the hill. Return along the same path.
Maps: U.S.G.S. Hollywood and Burbank Map and Guide of Griffith Park Hileman’s Recreational & Geological Map of Griffith Park
Brush Canyon is a beautiful yet lightly traveled trail from the southwest corner of Griffith Park. This hike begins from the north end of Canyon Drive and winds through a forest of large sycamore and oak trees in the canyon. The trail climbs into a drier chaparral and shrub terrain in the undeveloped mountainous interior of Griffith Park, leading up the southwest slope of Mount Bell. The 1,582-foot peak is located in the geographic center of Griffith Park. From the summit are fantastic views of secluded canyons, Hollywood, and the Los Angeles Basin. Mount Bell can also be accessed from the Mineral Wells Picnic Area (Hike 31) or from the park’s merry-go- round (Hike 29).
To the trailhead
At the intersection of Hollywood Boule vard and Western Avenue in Hollywood, drive 0.5 miles west on Hollywood Boulevard to Bronson Avenue. Turn right and continue 1.5 miles on Bronson Avenue (which merges with Canyon Drive) past Bronson Park to the end of the road. Park in the lot on the left.
From the parking lot, walk uphill on the road to the north. Pass the vehicle gate and continue on the unpaved fire road parallel to Brush Creek. The fire road follows along the perennial stream in a thicket of oak, manzanita, and sage. Pass the Pacific Electric Quarry and bend right (east), crossing over the creek to an expansive park and picnic area on the right at a quarter mile. After passing the park, climb out of the canyon, leaving the shade of the forest for the drought-resistant shrubs and a view of Mount Lee and the “HOLLYWOOD” sign. Continue up the canyon wall, with views of Mount Hollywood and Mount Bell, reaching the Mulholland Trail junction at one mile. To the left, the Mulholland Trail heads 1.5 miles west to the “HOLLYWOOD” sign on Mount Lee (Hike 37). Take the Mulholland Trail to the right 0.3 miles to Mount Hollywood Drive, a paved and gated road.
To continue up the final ascent to Mount Bell, take Mount Hollywood Drive 0.1 mile to the left. Pick up the dirt path on the right, and head up the slope. Stay to the right at a junction on a saddle and skirt the south flank of Mount Bell. To ascend the 1,582-foot summit, watch for a narrow path that scrambles through brush to the peak. Return by retracing your steps.
This hike offers an interesting view of the “Hollywood” sign from the back.
This hike up the Hollyridge Trail leads to the famous “HOLLYWOOD” sign on the south slope of Mount Lee in the far west end of Griffith Park. The historic Los Angeles landmark was originally built in the 1920s to read “HOLLYWOODLAND” to promote real estate development in Beachwood Canyon. In 1978, entertainment celebrities donated money to replace the original sign, which was worn from time, weather, and vandalism. The sign now measures 50 feet high by 450 feet long. It sits just below the Mount Lee summit.
The trail leads to close-up views of both the front and back of the sign, although the sign itself is fenced off from direct visitation to prevent vandalism. From the trail, the letters are immense. In addition, the panoramic views from atop Mount Lee are superb. The vistas extend far beyond the “HOLLYWOOD” letters to the Los Angeles basin and the San Fernando
To the trailhead
At the intersection of Franklin Avenue and Western Avenue in Hollywood, drive 0.7 miles west on Franklin Avenue to Beachwood Drive. Turn right (north) and continue 1.8 miles up Beachwood Drive to the signed trailhead parking area on the right at the end of the public road.
Head up the signed slope to a T-junction on a ridge overlooking Hollywood and Los Angeles. From the ridge is a picture-perfect view of the “HOLLYWOOD” sign. The right fork descends to the old trailhead access, which is now fenced off. Bear left and follow the ridge northeast, overlooking the Sunset Horse Ranch on the left and a view of the Griffith Park Observatory to the right. Continue 0.5 miles to an intersection with the unmarked Mulholland Trail. The right fork leads to Brush Canyon and Mount Bell (Hike 36).
Take a sharp left up the Mulholland Trail as it heads west. The winding fire road leads 0.3 miles to the paved and gated Mount Lee Drive. The left fork leads a short distance to an excellent frontal view of the sign. Go uphill to the right and steadily climb to the ridge. Head west along the north slope of Mount Lee, overlooking the San Fernando Valley. Pass below the telecommunication towers atop Mount Lee to a horseshoe left bend. Loop around the bend to the end of the road, perched above and 30 yards behind the “HOLLYWOOD” sign. A fence prohibits access to the sign (along with several warnings), but there is a view of the back of the towering letters and the skeletal support structure. The vistas extend across the Los Angeles basin to the south to the downtown skyline and beyond on clear days and to the San Fernando Valley to the north. Return along the same route.
This hike follows the perimeter of the Hollywood Reservoir on an asphalt service road that is closed to vehicles. The road, which is landscaped on both sides, is a rural retreat inside the city that is frequently used as a walking and jogging trail. The lake is fenced, preventing access to the shoreline. The tall foliage along the trail obscures full views of the reservoir except when crossing Mulholland Dam, but the dam crossing is magnificent. To the north is Mount Lee and the “Hollywood” sign overlooking the beautiful reservoir below. To the south is a view of Hollywood and the Los Angeles Basin.
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