A “Sky High” Hike With Will Rogers! A Spectacular New Years Day “Good Luck” View!

Welcome To The Top Of The World!

My friend Vincent was so excited to be standing atop the Santa Monica Mountains overlooking the Pacific Ocean that he had to pose twice!

My wife Alex and I took our friends Vincent and Earl on a “good luck” New Years Day hike, in one of the most beautiful state parks that California has to offer!

We Are At The Will Rogers State Park!

The terrific website “hikespeak.com” has this gorgeous shot of the park’s polo field, with the Los Angeles and Century City skylines looming in the distance…we are in the west Los Angeles neighborhood of Pacific Palisades, where the legendary Will Rogers built his ranch!

The Entertainer lived with his wife Betty and their three children in a 31-room ranch house, which included 11 baths and seven fireplaces – and in fact the house is still there and open as a museum.

Just north of the house is a stable and corrals, where we found a few horses chilling out and enjoying the brisk New Years day…

This incredible 100+ acres ranch became a State Park in 1944 after the death of Mrs. Rogers, and the house was listed on the National Register for Historic Places in 1971…now, people drive through the entrance on Sunset Boulevard and go for extensive hikes – and so did we!

Happy And Lucky New Years!

Our “good luck” tradition has become a healthy, energetic hike to begin each new year, so for 2022 we took Vincent and Earl on a journey to find a great vantage point overlooking the Santa Monica mountains and Pacific Ocean.

There are many different hiking trails here at Will Rogers, but we had a destination in mind, so we began what turned out to be a 1,000 foot elevation hike…

The trail we hiked got steep and narrow at points – and yes, there are mountain lions and bobcats in the Santa Monica mountains, but they tend to keep away from people – although there have been random attacks in the past…

The entire trail is dirt and rock, carved into the side of the mountains. After more than a half hour hiking up, we rounded a corner and there was what we were hiking for:

Crossing The Observation Bridge!

About two miles up from the park entrance sits a small bridge, which provides an incredible view of the west side of Los Angles, Santa Monica and the Pacific Ocean:

Here’s a video that shows the view – from downtown LA to the entire west side of the LA basin – enjoy this look at the bridge and the views:

Once we got to the top, there was the obligatory panorama shot, the group photo and there was only one more shot to get – my favorite “upside down” selfie:

This was our “good luck” start to 2022 – and I hope that everyone has a healthy and happy 2022 – it was also my birthday on December 31, and my wife took me on a weeklong celebration of “all things” Los Angeles:

This is the view from the top of the iconic HOLLYWOOD sign – with Lake Hollywood to the right and the Pacific Ocean far off in the distance.

I will be sharing this hike soon, but you can see some of the fun my wife pulled off for my birthday by clicking on my story here:

More to come from this “L.A. Staycation”, which began once we got home from our Christmas trip to Cleveland, or as Alex called it:

You can see more of this wild wild ride by clicking on my story here:

Finally, if you want to see more of my favorite LA hikes, remember I took you on an adventure involving a rattlesnake!

We came across an angry “Rattler” in Beverly Hills!

Click here to see how wild this park can get:

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Leave me a comment and let me know your favorite hikes!

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Categories: Art, Exotic Travel, Hollywood, Los Angeles, Memoirs, nature, Real Estate, Sports, Travel, Travel Adventures, Travel Memoir

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15 replies

  1. Fantastic view! That’s a perfect way to start a new year based on your new year resolution👍👍👍

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Wow what views! Happy new year John and family 🙂 mind out for those rattlers!!!!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Happy new year to you as well! the crazy part about the rattlesnake was that the people were gathered around it and didn’t even warn us there was an angry snake staring back! I will be sharing our trek up behind the Hollywood sign which was really cool as well! Hooray for Hollywood!


  3. I envy the hike and your shot of the Hollywood sign. Good day for you all!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. John, I had no idea there was a Will Rogers State Park. When my mother (born and raised in Huntington, WV) was young, her best friend Ida Harvey’s father was good friends with Will, who would come and visit on occasion. Mother remembered his visits! I’m so glad to know his home is now a state park.

    I love your hikes and photos! I especially love your upside down selfies. Cheers to Vincent and Earl, and what a great ‘good luck’ New Year’s Day hike.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. 11 baths? I hope Mrs Rogers employed cleaning staff!
    Lovely hike and great photos, John.
    Best wishes, Pete.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. What a great way to start the year. Amazing views. Here’s to many more adventures in 2022.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Wow, what a great hike and terrific views!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I haven’t been to America’s but it’s neat and you wrote good. A nice day out. I liked the barrow trials leading up to the hiking point. Bobcats are a scare. And I’m not built for hiking so don’t have a favorite place haha. Xx
    Isa A. Blogger

    Liked by 1 person

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