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My Favorite Hiking Spots

I have come up with a few of my favorite hiking spots for  those of you looking to do some hiking this spring. I love hiking because in addition to being great exercise, it allows you to actually surround yourself with nature as opposed to just driving past it. Hiking is a great way to get the most out of your visit to a new area; what better way to fully take in an area than hiking?

The views at the top of a hike are usually as good as it gets. I am a little nervous about running into wildlife (too many bear attacks in recent years), however, that hasn’t stopped me from enjoying a nice hike. Here are my top hiking areas (so far) ranging from urban to national parks.

Runyon Canyon Park – Los Angeles, California

Views: City of Los Angeles, Griffith Observatory
Pros: gorgeous views of Los Angeles, good workout (a few steep hills), no dangerous wildlife, free parking, free yoga
Cons: crowded on weekends, not shaded (hot and sunny – bring sunglasses and sunblock!)

Runyon Canyon hike

Address: 2001 N Fuller Ave Los Angeles, CA 90046

Griffith Park – Los Angeles, California

Views: Hollywood Sign, Los Angeles
Pros: Great spot for taking photos of the Hollywood Sign, not as crowded as Runyon Canyon, free parking, no wildlife, difficult hike despite the short distance
Cons: hike is a bit too short, not shaded

Griffith Park hike

Address: 4730 Crystal Springs Dr  Los Angeles, CA 90027

White Mountains National Forest – New Hampshire

Views: mountains
Pros: great isolated hiking, heavily forested with beautiful pine trees, clean, the air just smells fresher
Cons: there is no one else around if you get lost, saw a few bear prints (yikes!), small fee for parking

White Mountains hike

Address: Greeley Ponds Trailhead (parking lot on Kancamagus Highway NH Rte. 112

Camden Hills State Park – Camden, Maine

Views: Mt. Battie, ocean and mountain
Pros: strenuous hike, plenty of different trails, breathtaking views of Mt. Battie, beautiful trees, no wildlife
Cons: small parking fee, walking downhill on the rocks can be challenging

Camden Hills hike

Address: 280 Belfast Rd, Camden, ME 04843

Emerald Bay State Park – South Lake Tahoe, California

Views: Lake Tahoe
Pros: beautiful views, pretty streams, Vikingsholm castle, beaches along the way to stop at
Cons: pay for parking, parking difficult to find, short trail

Emerald Bay hike

Address: Parking located at Hwy 89 at Emerald Bay State Park, South Lake Tahoe, CA

Crystal Cove State Park – Laguna Beach, CA

Views: coastline, mountains
Pros: gorgeous desert scenery, peaceful (no large crowds), great escape fro the city, intense workout (very steep hills), free parking, fabulous views, you can head over to the beach after your hike
Cons: there have been lion attacks, you need to watch out for snakes, may be too isolated for some

Crystal Cove hike

Address: 8471 N Coast Hwy  Laguna Beach, CA 92651 (free parking can be found along side streets or in shopping plaza)

Camelback Mountain – Phoenix, Arizona

Views: Phoenix, surrounding mountain landscapes, desert
Pros: Great views of the city, Tall Cactus plants to take your picture next do,  great workout!
Cons: You need to watch out for snakes!

Views from Camelback Mountain in Phoenix, AZ













Address: 5700 North Echo Canyon Parkway Phoenix, AZ 85018

Other great hiking areas: Rocky Mountain State Park (Colorado), Harriman State Park (Idaho)

Top places I want to hike: Arches National Park in Utah, Grand Canyon National Park in Arizona, and Glacier National Park in Montana.

In addition, check out this Discovery list of the 10 best hiking spots in the US.





    • mudrock
    • March 22, 2013  at  6:21 AM

    Runyun Canyon and Griffith park look pretty cool to me. It looks like you can get a good view of the Hollywood sign also. I heard stories about mountain lions and other animal attacks in that area. I’m sure all of these places are a great way to take in the view and get exercise.

    • dogbert784
    • March 21, 2013  at  5:44 PM

    Emerald Bay State Park looks brilliant. But I feel Griffith Park is much better for more solitary explorations.

    • soughtseven1035
    • March 10, 2013  at  8:43 PM

    Those look like some great spots. I visited Alaska last summer and they have some beautiful scenery there. I chose a couple smaller known parks and decided to hike. I went by myself but it was an amazing experience. I saw salmon breeding spots as well as bear poop and everything in between. I highly recommend people check out some spots in Alaska!

  1. Salt Lake City and Provo are very scenic areas so I would imagine the views hiking would be amazing! I haven’t had the chance to do many recreational type activities in the area…

    • omariferrari
    • March 8, 2013  at  7:05 PM

    When I was in college, I remember hiking up to the Y in Provo, UT. Utah is one of the most beautiful places on the planet, but that view of the entire valley when you’re up at the Y, up above Belmont condominiums is AMAZING!!! I don’t think I’d move back to Provo to live ever again, but it’s definitely a nice place to visit, especially if you like beauty and nice scenic places. Utah is the perfect place for anyone who loves outdoor activities. There are endless hiking trails that go up in the mountains, OR stay down on the low lands if you’re afraid of heights lol. Utah gets the stamp of approval from me for great hiking!

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